Ismail Darbar (born 1 June 1964) is an Indian composer and violinist, a popular name in Indian Film Industry: Bollywood. He was a contestant on Bigg Boss 3 in 2009.


Ismail Darbar is from Surat, Gujarat. He worked for several years as a session violinist for leading music directors Laxmikant Pyarelal, Kalyanji Anandji, Bappi Lahiri, Rajesh Roshan, Anand-Milind, Nadeem-Shravan, Jatin-Lalit and A. R. Rahman.[1] Finally he got the break after so many years with Sanjay Leela Bhansali's film Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam. Earlier Darbar had played violin for Jatin-Lalit in the movie Khamoshi: The Musical.[2] Later on his music in Bhansali's Devdas was acclaimed.[3][4] He did not work with Bhansali after Devdas due to personal differences.[5] After Devdas, Darbar did a few more movies but was unable to get much success.[citation needed] In 2005, he composed for seven out of 12 tracks for Subhash Ghai's Kisna: The Warrior Poet after A. R. Rahman had left the project mid-way to complete an international assignment.[6] However Ghai would later say, "The music [of the film] has turned out so well that you can't distinguish an Ismail song from a Rahman one".[7]

He was one of the four judges on Zee TV's Indian musical program Sa Re Ga Ma Pa Challenge 2005. The other judges were Jatin-Lalit, Aadesh Shrivastava and Himesh Reshammiya. He was one of the four judges on Sa Re Ga Ma Pa Challenge 2005[8] and Sa Re Ga Ma Pa Challenge 2007. He was also one of the three judges for Amul Star Voice of India 2 and Bharat Ki Shaan: Singing Star – Season 2 on DD National.[citation needed].

In 2007, Ismail Darbar also came up with a music album called Rasiya Saajan directed by S Ramachandran. Ismail Darbar also appeared Bigg Boss (Season 3) on Colors TV.[9]

He entered in state level politics by joining BJP Gujarat in 2011.



As music director

Year Film Title Notes
1999 Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam WonNational Film Award for Best Music Direction
WonFilmfare RD Burman Award for New Music Talent
Nominated – Filmfare Award for Best Music Director
2000 Tera Jadoo Chal Gayaa
2002 Deewangee
2002 Devdas WonScreen Award for Best Music Director
Nominated – Filmfare Award for Best Music Director
2002 Desh Devi
2002 Shakti: The Power
2003 Baaz: A Bird in Danger
2003 Vishnu Telugu film
2005 Kisna: The Warrior Poet Co-composed with A. R. Rahman
2006 Husn
2006 Debojit
2007 Rasiya Saajan Private album
2008 Mehbooba
2009 The Unforgettable
2013 Mahabharat Star Plus
2013 Kaanchi Co-composed with Salim-Sulaiman
2014 Ssimran
2014 Ek Tho Chance (unreleased)
2014 Gurudakshina
2016 Santheyalli Nintha Kabira Kannada film


Darbar became the subject of controversy when he accused A. R. Rahman of having bought the Academy Awards he won for the film Slumdog Millionaire (2008).[10] Rahman denied the allegations by Darbar, but decided not to file a lawsuit against him.[11] On 2 February 2015, Darbar, his son Zayed and their associates were arrested for physically assaulting an assistant director Prashamit Chaudhury employed by him earlier. Ismail refused to pay his due salaries and instead settled score by assaulting his former employee. [12] [13]

See also


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