Singer Bela Shende performs at Ek Mutthi Asmaan; Exclusive Interview with Swar Aalap Digital

by: Anisha Nandan |

Brought up in a family with a musical background, Bela Shende found her Gurus at home. She is one of the most talented and versatile Indian playback singers, who has fascinated audiences across the globe with her uniquely melodious voice. She has to her credit several songs in Bollywood as well as songs in many regional languages. With her songs like Apsara AaliDur DurRoj Wate, and many more she has won a million hearts.

Bela Shende shares her views with Swar Aalap Digital on various topics and a major event “Ek Mutthi Asmaan”, in which she was one of the performers.

How does having a musical background affect one’s upbringing?

Having a musical background is surely a blessing in disguise and I’m fortunate that music has been passed down to me through generations. My grandmother Smt. Kusum Shende was a Kirana Gharana artist, a renowned classical singer and a Marathi plays (Musical Drama) stage actress. I have followed in her footsteps since my childhood. My grandfather, a cardiothoracic surgeon, was also inclined toward music. His Hindi accent and pronunciations were magnificent. I have learnt to speak Hindi and Urdu with a better and proper pronunciation from him. He even taught me to recite good poems. My father and my grandmother are my gurus, who have taught me semi-classical Ghazals, Bhav Geet and the nuances of film music.

Music runs in my blood and I consider myself extremely lucky for this musical lineage. My elder sister, Sawani Shende is a renowned classical singer of today’s generation, whereas I am into film music. Coming back home after a show, we critically analyse our performances and how we can improvise them, which is truly an eye-opener for an artist.


You have won the National Award twice, but what proved to be the turning point in your career?
Receiving a National Award is indeed a great honour for an artist. Whenever I record songs in any language, I give it my 100 per cent because I think every song and every film is destined. It is in the artist’s hands to render the song at its best under the guidance of the music director. I never think about awards but I believe, one must just work diligently and it’s a feather in the cap if one receives awards or appreciation for it. I received National Award for Ahirani Flim. The National Award announcement elated me greatly. I, on my part, dedicate this Award to my family, my Gurus, my Music directors and my parents.

There have been many turning points in my career. Sometimes the Awards that I receive and at other times, get appreciation from stalwarts like Javed Akhtar for my breathless song and appreciation from Lata Mangeshkar in a show. These make me work harder to be worthy of my mettle.

What responsibilities come while taking the legacy of music ahead?
I have been in the industry for 23 long years and this made me realize responsibility increases as experience increases. You have to be honest, focused and consistent in your work and always keep learning. Delivering good music to the audience is the foremost responsibility of every singer.

You are a judge on a reality show and you also have your live show. So, what’s the major difference between a reality show and a stage show performance?
Well, there is a huge difference between a reality show and a live performance just as there is between recording a song and performing it live. In the studio, you are surrounded by a few people in a closed room where you sing as per the instructions of the music director but when you perform live, you sing for the audience. That’s a stage where the audience reacts to you and vice versa. The experience you get while recording a song in a studio and performing it live on a stage is very different and the rendition also changes accordingly.

BELA SHENDE 2-2Today’s reality shows are a lot different from what they used to be in the past. When I sit as a judge in a reality show, I often observe that participants’ rendition of their performance has also changed. The Golden Era of Music in Reality shows has long gone. It was an era when only music was prioritised. I believe one must give their foremost priority to only music if he or she wants to pursue this as their profession –  Money, Fame and appearance on stage will follow you eventually.

After lockdown, a major event, Ek Mutthi Asmaan was organized and you were one of the performers; can you share your perspective on this?
Truly honoured and glad that I was a part of Ek Mutthi Asmaan. I am obliged to Sameer Kolhi Ji and Dinesh Ghate Ji. This show was conducted by Uttam Singh Ji and it turned out really well. We all are fans of Madan Mohan Ji and I have been listening to and singing his songs since my childhood. He is one of my favourites and his songs are timeless. I always say that retro music, evergreen songs, old rhythms, and old films are not old. It is the age of the audience that increases; songs never age. I’m extremely delighted that I was a part of this concert. We all enjoyed it with the live audience after a very long time as the interaction between the artists and the audience during the live show was amazing and it was undoubtedly a grand celebration of Madan Ji’s music.

Share this post

Comments (7)

  • पंकज जैन सरस, भोपाल Reply

    बेला जी की मखमली, जादुई आवाज
    उन्हे है ज्ञान क्या हैं सुर, ताल और साज

    राष्ट्रीय पुरस्कार विजेता है यह नही था पता
    एक मुट्ठी आसमान में बिखेरी सावन की घटा

    11 May 2022 at 8:51 pm
  • Mamta shah Reply

    Swar Aalap is an only organization, which has given recognition to many stalwart musicians & singers who had lost their entity. He has done a huge service to the music industry by giving platform to known & unknown artists.

    I wish them great success in all their endeavors.
    Hope they grow huge & beyond. ..

    11 May 2022 at 9:05 pm
    • Anuprita Rane Reply

      Bela Shende a great singer with a melodious voice , her passion towards music and consistency with hard work made her to reach this height ??
      Dineshji’s contribution always admirable ??

      11 May 2022 at 11:35 pm
  • Aniket Shah Reply

    Bella has a magic and sweet voice. I really enjoyed her singing. I was expecting her to sing duet with jawed aliji. but every music was excellent and arranged very nicely by uttam singji.

    11 May 2022 at 9:09 pm
  • Ashok Jagtap. Reply

    Bela is a very good singer and known all over India. She is a gifted singer.
    I could not attend,”Ek mutthi Aasman”. but got reports from musicians that it was a great success.Congratuletion to all of you.

    12 May 2022 at 10:43 am
  • J.p.gala Reply

    She is melodious voice ….

    12 May 2022 at 1:39 pm
  • Trupti kothari Reply

    Bela Shende sings very soulfully …it touches our heart directly ….it’s pleasure to listen to her

    21 May 2022 at 2:41 am

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *