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J P Pereira

Edward Estibeiro, from Utorda is one of the wellknown singers of the Konkani stage. Besides being a good singer, his acting and mimicry is praise worthy too, for he has been performing on the stage for some time now. “I never took part in any cultural activity in school or college, but wrote a skit when I was in the eleventh standard as a boarder at the Fr Agnelo Boarding School, Pilar”, mentions Edward, but goes on to say… “the love to perform came later.”

After completing his graduation, along with his brother Constancio, a talented comedian who has acted in many professional tiatrs, they formed a small group along with friends. The group performed a variety of entertainment programmes especially during the Christmas and the Carnival season, like skits, monologues, dance, mono-acting, mimicry, playing musical instruments and singing.

His father, late Antonio Pascoal Estibeiro known as Epa De Paroda was a khell tiatrist. He had written and staged many khell tiatrs and non-stop shows here in Goa, Mumbai, besides presenting the first non-stop show in Kuwait.  During his vacation in Goa, both the sons used to be asked to join the rehearsals. It was this platform that Edwad made use of to get onto the Konkani stage, in his dad’s non-stop show titled ‘Khoxtt Ani Sontos’.

Here, he was spotted by the late Inacio De Canacona, who asked him to join his troupe and thus began his specialty of the ‘solo-duet’. Edward disguises himself as a woman when he has to render songs with interactive lyrics, in both male and female voices which is his trademark, even today.

In 1993, Edward left for Kuwait for better prospects. And despite his busy schedule, he enrolled as a member of the United Friends Club in Kuwait. “I was pushed to take part in the cultural activities, such as one act play competitions and musical shows organised by the club, as well as other cultural activities such as Goa Day organised by other clubs and associations like Goan Welfare Society and Kuwait Konkani Kendr”, he recounts.

In these programmes he would mimic various singers including the melody king, late Alfred Rose, and other like Rita Rose, Jacinto Vaz, M Boyer, Anthony San, Nephie Rod, Young Chico, Lorna, Jose Rod and others. This went on for a brief period until the idea of composing his songs came to him.

Recalling an incident that happened while travelling for a show in Goa he tells us that ace trumpeter Theo Alvares asked him why he does not carry a baton on the stage like the late Alfred Rose, which explains how closely he can replicate the voice of the melody king. But Edward says humbly, “No one can take the place of Alfred Rose”.

In Kuwait, he first sang in Laurent Pereira’s tiatr, ‘Tuje Upkar’. Since then he has sung in numerous musical shows and tiatrs held in Kuwait, written by the Goan writers working there. He has also acted in many tiatr, staged by leading tiatrists from Goa, like ‘Gonvddo’ written by Nazy Rod,  ‘Sir’ by Comedian Agostinho and the great hit, ‘Mahanand Munis vo Soitan’ by Tony Dias.

He also performed in ‘Ani – Anik Zayem’, a Broadway style musical show by Comedian Philip and Shahu’s musical show in Qatar. He sang a trio in three different voices and performed ventriloquism in John D’Silva’s tiatr ‘Ghutt’, with a dummy of a parrot. His own tiatrs have been staged in a few villages.

Besides tiatr, Edward has performed in radio plays for All India Radio as well as on Goa Doordarshan. He has composed lyrics for 9 songs for an audio album on Padre Pio, produced by the Capuchin Fathers. At present he is working on his first audio album, titled ‘Goa Amcam Zai’, which will feature some of the best singers from the Konkani stage and others too, which will be released in April 2019. Edward has also composed lyrics and has arranged music for many other singers too.

Edward attributes success to his wife Celina who he says has always been very encouraging and supportive. With talents running in his family lineage, his son Keane who plays the keyboards backed an entire musical show at the age of 13, besides playing for the choir at at the Church in Utorda. His daughter Sydelle has started singing in tiatr and recently bagged the title ‘Nightingale of Goa 2018’ (teens category) organised by Pliar Music Academy. “God has been good to me.  He has bestowed me with many talents and a loving family,” says Edward, on a parting note.

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