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Rahman's mentor Ilayaraja with Gulzar

Even while the Guru team of A.R. Rahman and Gulzar is being feted in the US for their “Jai Ho" track in Slumdog Millionaire the poet par excellence has gone to the Guru of Guru's composer for his next cinematic collaboration.

Gulzar Saab is working with Rahman's mentor Ilayaraja for the first time in 25 years. Says Gulzar saab, "The last time Ilayaraja and I came together was for Balu Mahendra's Sadma. Now we're working together in another film after so many years."

The film is directed by Ajay Verma, who is grandson of the legendary inventor of calendar-art Raja Ravi Verma. "It's interesting that Ajay Verma has made a film at just about the same time when a film on the life of Raja Ravi Verma by Ketan Mehta is ready for release," says Gulzar.

Gulzar saab is not too fond of the title though. "The film is at the moment called SRK. Hopefully it will change. What the film most certainly changes is the idiom of expression for film music. I feel Shaad Ali's Jhoom Barabar Jhoom and Anurag Kashyap's No Smoking gave me a chance to experiment with words in a way that film music generally doesn't. Now I feel the same way about my poetry in SRK."

About working with Ilayaraja again after 25 years, Gulzar Saab says, "His aptitude and skills for creating the perfect harmony have not altered at all. Ilayaraja is one of his kind. I wish he was heard more often in Hindi cinema."

Gulzar Saab would be pleased to learn Ilayaraja is also scoring music for Balki's Pa which features Amitabh Bachchan, Abhishek and Vidya Balan.

Says Balki, "He did the music for my Cheeni Kum, and now Pa. For me there can be no cinema without Ilayaraja."

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