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Mississauga, Oct. 30, 2005 : After about a four-month-long of high-profile publicity and a long wait, the dream became reality in the form of "Wilfy Nite Canada - 2005" at at the Living Art Center of Square Mega Mall of Mississauga on Sunday, October 30. The event got recorded in the history as the first-ever Mangalorean musical nite by a Konkani artist in the American continent. Wilfy, popularly known as "Konkan Kogul" (nightingale of Konkani) and his wife Meena, the "Konkan Maina" along with the star singers: Vishwas, Sandria & Prem, enthralled the crowd with their popular old and new musical numbers.
The show became a reality only because of the courage and risk taken by Max Mendes, a Taccode-born community man, who was well supported by eight families in Canada and thousands of well-wishers from Canada, America and the world over. There were more than 700 who were on their toes with excitement and enthusiasm to hear for the first time ever Wilfy - Meena's popular numbers.
Skilfully led by Michelle Fernandes, a group of children - Trisha Pinto, Dickson D'Cunha, Alistar & Janice D'Souza, Crystal & Lillian Lobo, Shaina & Rayner Mendes, Vernon & Warren Monteiro commenced the program with the singing of the national anthem of Canada, O Canada. This was followed by a short introduction of Wilfy by one of the Co-sponsor of this program, Flavian Pinto.
Then came the legend with his mini troupe to start the evening with an invocation song, 'Namo Namo' which gave a perfect start to the show. The prayer song was led by Wilfy and was supported by Meena, Vishwas Rebimbus, Sandria Rodrigues and Prem Lobo.
'Salaam Salaam' by Wilfy, Meena, Prem, Vishwas and Sandria, 'I love you' by Vishwas and 'Jeevan' by Meena were the first few songs of the first session. All the songs were simply superb and the entire crowd was enjoying the electrifying music, combined with meaningful lyrics.
Wilfy brought back the sweet memories of our past history back in India by presentation of his most popular number - "Mog Thuzo Kithlo Ashelom". This was part of famous Konkani film - "Mog ani Maipas" At the conclusion of this number, Mr. Alva introduced the Hero of this movie, Mr. Oswald Sequeira to the audience. In his simple message, Mr. Sequeira stated that it is unbelievable to have this honor showered upon him by the organizers. He stated that this is a dream come true. Oswald Sequeira was honoured with a sandalwood garland by Wilfy himself.
4 comedy skits provided hilarious laughter to the audience as the performers; Oswald & Lydia Sequeira, Herbert Lobo and Flavian Pinto, in their costumes went through their routine and had the audience eating out of their hands. The audience felt for a moment that they were in Mangalore, to witness a Mangalorean Police man dress, and a typical Mangaloren costumes worn by the group and funny actors and actresses.
Other numbers that hit the show were 'Vande Mataram' by Prem, Vishwas, Sandria, Malita D'Mello, 'Kuxi Zata' by Prem, 'Ful Fula' by Vishwas and Sandria, 'Yeyago Yeyare' by Meena, Prem, Merlin, Sandria and Sheela, as well as dancers who performed during the rendition of these songs were Diana and Frederick D'Mello, Prescy and Leo D'Cunha, Cynthia and Ronald Mathias, Lydia Monteiro, Leon and Lydwin Lobo, Aaron Pinto, Juliet and Jerome D'Souza. There was also a rare Tulu hit which enthralled the audience 'Madime Daieg Aayena' by Prem Kumar.
At this juncture Mr. Herbert Lobo introduced the honorary guest of the Program, Member of Parliament of Ontario, Honorable, Mr. Bob Delaney, MPP. On behalf of the province of Ontario, Mr. Delaney congratulated Wilfy's mesmerizing contributions to Konkani music and released his 37th CD. On behalf of the Governor of Ontario, Mr. Delaney congratulated the people of the greatest democracy on the earth that is India. He thanked Indian community for their greatest contributions to Canadian culture, economy and scientific growth.
This cultural website was hosted during this great event. This will serve as a platform for future ethnic shows and events.
An amazing accomplishment at the event was the debut of Wilfy's new song, Oh Canada, on the beauty and sights of Canada, the generosity and love displayed by the Canadians and the warm hospitality provided to him and his troupe. To the roll of drums, the clinking of "dhandiyas", Canadian youth performed an exuberant and animated dance to the beat of Batkarancha Shetani. With their colourful costumes and sparkling jewellery the boys and girls, novices at dancing, gave their best performance.
Dashing dance performance by local artistes was another prime attraction of the show. The team included dancers like Craig D'Souza, Cedric and Michelle D'Souza, Anita Castelino, Ravi Fernandes, Shalom and Simona Rasquinha and Rayner Mendes. All dances were choreographed by Krystal and Amanda Pereira, and Merlin Rodrigues, Diana and Karina D'Mello.
Community and Leadership Award was presented to Wilfy and Meena to a huge, thundering applause from the crowd. This was one of the most memorable moments for Wilfy, as on behalf of 'Toastmasters' Max Rasquinha flew into Canada from Houston, USA exclusively to attend this show and present the award. Artistes, sponsors and well wishers were also felicitated during the show for their tremendous contribution to this successful show.
Austin Prabhu from USA was the guest of honour. In his address to the gathering, he hailed the achievements of Wilfy Rebimbus, and praised Max Mendes and his team for taking such a brave step. In appreciation of his contributions and support, he was awarded the Manpathr and shawl by Herbert Lobo.
Local talented compere Donald Alva compered the event with his charismatic skill and style. Joswin Pinto, guitarist and music director of the show was well supported by local musicians Oliver Sequeira, E N Sequiera and Darryl D'Souza.
Other songs of the evening were 'Vorsam Zaalim Sotra', 'Poixe', 'Kitem Zai Moga Xivai', 'Yore Mojea Moga, 'Bhattkaranchea Xetanim' and 'Mhoji Mai'.
To thundering applause, the Baila, a fitting conclusion to an exhilarating evening of reminiscence, emotion, love and enchantment concluded the show of the century. Canadian teenagers put their heart and soul into the dance for Baila. The vivacious youngsters were Carol Lobo, Leandra Pinto, Karina & Michele D'Mello, Saskia D'Sa and Michelle D'Souza. The choreographer was Carol Lobo.
All the sponsors of this great concert were recognized individually after every song with unique mementoes.
In his Vote of Thanks, Maxim Mendes recognized the support of the sponsors who contributed tremendously toward the event and ensured its success. He offered his deepest appreciation to Walter Nandalike of Daijiworld for his involvement and motivation in ensuring widespread publicity for WilfyNite Canada 2005. Mendes made special mention of the numerous volunteers who generously offered assistance, time and energies in creating history.
After this historic event, if the Mangaloreans in Canada will remember Wilfy Rebimbus and his troupe for their mesmerizing performances, never shall they forget the name of Max Mendes and his associates for putting in their whole-hearted efforts to turn this into a very successful event. The Konkani community in Canada will remain grateful to him for his marvellous contribution.
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