Yummy Pad Thai
Exotic Orchids. Seafood. Lemongrass. Chicken satay. Meat balls. Papayas and fresh coconuts. All on served on the streets in style. Affordable hi-fashion street stalls. Beautiful smiling girls. Great hospitality. Candy colored cabs and smiles all around. That is the "Land of smiles" for you and how could we not smile back? The build up for the trip to Bangkok was such that our very short stay out there was almost anti-climatic.
We did have an amazing show and a good time in between airports, taxi rides,  rehearsal, briefings and the Show.
With part of the Team Nagaland outside the Royal Palace
We all have lists of peeves. Mercy has been crying foul that she did not get to buy any footwear.
Kuvelü didn't get to eat enough 'chicken tails on sticks' on the street. Alüne didn't get to do much shopping. While Azi had to be content with a few souvenirs and not enough photographs to go through. Well, what can we say? Budget was tight. Exchange rates terrible. Very little time and our dear Manager could not be included on the trip for reasons best known to the Organizers :(
We couldn't even get our friends and partners to the show. Such was the madness.
Bangkok Night Shopping
But we did find time to ride the sky train; made numerous trips to the 7-eleven outlets for snacks and drank up dozens of fresh coconuts in between delicious bites of flavorful thai seafood dishes and many bowls of tom yum goong. We also hit the streets of Pratunam Market and bought some major lovelies but no 'heels' to show. Next up were Pat pong Night Market, MBK and the amazing stalls right next to our Hotel. A girl could go crazy and we did. We actually timed and set alarms on our phones inorder to ration our time for shopping, eating, getting ready, rehearsals, packing and cleaning up. Yes. It was that crazy.
Outside the Concert Venue
Then came the 'Showtime' baby!
We spent the whole morning and afternoon at soundcheck and finally waded through the scary traffic back to our hotel, tucked in a little lunch and it was time to get ready for the Show. Quick showers in turns (three girls in the same room and one bathroom) and dressing up time!
Green room moments.
After three calls from the lobby, we were finally all set to go in our heavy jewellery, delicate costume and trademark look: dark big eyes, rosy lips and big smiles. The boys beat us at getting ready on time? Almost. There were a few last minute rushing back to hotel rooms for lucky charms and stuff. (Just kidding!)
Enroute to Concert
The whole gang of Naga artists then piled into two really long vans and after a few tense moments of being almost late for our own show, we reached the venue and headed to the backstage area. The 23rd floor of the Centara Grand Hotel, Bangkok.
Opening acts as the guests settled in and then the show took off at around 7:00 pm with an introduction on Nagaland-Thailand friendship, how the idea of the Handshake Concert in Bangkok came about and promo vignettes on both Nagaland and Thailand. Speech by the two hands (Thailand's Minister of Commerce and Nagaland's Minister of Health & Family Welfare), hitting of the traditional Thai gong-drum and the show began.
Nagaland and Thailand join hands.
More vignettes on Nagaland, Hornbill Festival, Handshake Concerts of the past flashing in between musical acts. First on stage were the Zeliang Dancers who swayed gracefully followed by the storming footwork of the Sumi Warriors. And then it was our turn.
O Rhosi......Rhosi! Rhosi!
The evening's emcee announced us and we started off with a classical vocal piece "E Zhalilü", progressed to the tati accompanied "Tsakhatiyo" and emerging out of our traditional Shawl and Mekhela ensemble, we shook a leg to our "O Rhosi dance mix" in Keds Krome's beautiful customised new looks for us. Inspite of the spotlights on us, we saw a lot of appreciative smiles and claps which buoyed us on. Next on stage was the band "OFF" followed by "Avancer". Both bands pulling off smooth acts.
Avancer
OFF
The Nagaland segment of the show was rounded off by "Zowe Madrigal" who stormed the stage after Kenei Chale's soulful vocals enchanted ears following a stellar performance by Pt. Vishwa Mohan Bhatt and his crew.
Kenei Chale
Nise Meruno and Zowe Madrigal
Then it was time to relax and enjoy the rest of the show as the Thai segment led by the Thai Dance troupe took us to a whole new level of colours and choreography.
Next up was a surprise performance by the Music Task Force Advisor Dr. Nicky Kire and MTF boss Gugs Chishi and the house band with their rendition of "You're my best friend" supported by Team Nagaland.
Thai Singer Christina Aquilar
Behind the stage, we did a couple of interviews for the Thai TV Channels including Nation Channel and some quick bytes later, caught the last act of the evening, Thailand's Popstar "Christina Aquilar" who belted out a couple of her superhits to the frenzied delight of her fans who got a chance to get up close and personal as she put on a very energetic and exciting show supported by two lithe male dancers.
Photocall: Tetseo Sisters flanked by Zowe Madrigal
Post show press photo calls with the organizers, special guests and meeting with new fans was big fun. Then we all headed back to our hotel, fixed up our own dinners (Thank God for 7 Eleven outlets opening all night) and went to bed for a well deserved rest.
Bon Voyage....Hiyohey!
All too soon, it was the day after and we had to do an early check out, bags all packed we camped out in the Hotel Lobby, did a little last minute shopping nearby and it was time to head out to the Airport. Finding enough taxis for the 30 strong gang was chaotic. Somehow we all reunited at the airport and the next thing we knew, we were in Kolkatta stranded around midnight and after a sad, hungry, long, and uncomfy night's wait at last minute accommodations for the next morning's flight (we girls got rescued but the rest of the team weren't too lucky), we were finally touching home grounds. Finally at the Dimapur Airport, we bade our byes to our fellow musician friends and headed home, tired but excited and wiser from the entire experience. And totally anticipating the follow up feedback and Press reports for the Photographs, of course. (Which came a couple of weeks late, but lovely shots all the same. Thank you!)
For more pictures, click here. And some more here. Hiyohey!

Content copyright © Tetseo Sisters 2011- 2012. All rights reserved. Do not use any images/content without  permission. All photographs by Tetseos except where indicated. Concert Photography by Azo Khamo.


4 comments:

Gainingam Phaomei says:
at: 21 August 2012 at 14:29 said...

Neat write-ups! It really was a roller coaster ride I would say. Love the remarks "We all have lists of peeves...", "Then came the 'Showtime' baby!..." :-)
Glad that an Event like this happened. Proud of our 'Tetseo Sisters' and the entire team. Job well done!
Thank you for sharing this! "Hiyohey!"

Tetseo Sisters says:
at: 22 August 2012 at 07:33 said...

Thank you Gainingam :)

We had a great time though it wasn't perfect.
But that's life. Thank you for taking the time to share your views with us too. Do visit again.

Hiyohey!

Anonymous
at: 9 September 2012 at 01:57 said...

One great show you put up. Your outfits are really awesome and your voices too. Waiting for your fusion album. Hope it is coming out soon. Hiyohey!

Tetseo Sisters says:
at: 25 September 2012 at 20:05 said...

Hello there,

Thank you for the compliments.
We are working on it. But it is taking a lot of time.
we will make sure it is worth the wait :) Hiyohey.