Of late, I have been visiting several Delhi events and concerts for two reasons;
One, to refresh me after a week of self-imposed misery.
Two, because it helps me again connect with all of you with my writings.
Attending these weekend Delhi concerts and events pushes me to write about them. These are my content engines.
Lok Gatha Utsav
Last week, I had the good fortune of visiting this festival at the Indira Gandhi National Centre of Arts lawns. This place gives immense joy to all those who want to explore Indian art, dance, music and other aspects of culture. This is a one-stop shop for all the art and music lovers who do not want go to every nook and cranny of the country to explore its culture and lifestyle.
This festival, Lok Gatha Utsav, brought together several folk artists at the IGNCA.
Look at what I saw at this festival.
Shweta is just 18 and is already making waves in the country. She is the only woman in India who sings Alha, the popular ballad of Central India.
Alha is a folk song about the martial exploits of two brothers who lived more than 900 years back. A few years back, I had written about this folk song.
Have a look at this video and I am sure you will be impressed.
This young girl was accompanied by her Guru as well.
The Band from Bombay
Sometimes, Delhi events and concerts throw up surprises.
Have a look at this group from the Bombay area. Its performance was about Shivaji, the King of Bombay area in the 17th century.
Look at the expressions of the lead singer!
The lead singer dresses after the King while his teammates wear the clothes of soldiers.
I took a video of this energetic song. Watch it here.
The dancers from Braj
Now, let us have a look at these dancers from the Braj area.
They are enacting a dance sequence representing Lord Krishna and the Gopies.
This is not an ordinary dance. Krishna represents the God almighty and the Gopies are us mortals.
A few months ago, I had written about this dance in this article > http://www.ahauntedtravel.com/hauntingly-beautiful-india-maharaas-the-celestial-dance-of-lord-krishna/
Colours of Rajasthan
This post on Delhi events and concerts would be incomplete without pictures from Rajasthan
Have a look at this family.
Many folk singers from Rajasthan and other states now showcase their talents in government-sponsored events like this one.
If they are lucky, then they are invited to perform at private events of the rich and powerful. The leader of this group has given me his card. In case you are interested in contacting them, please e-mail me.
The warriors of Odisha
I find these folk dances to be a rich source of history.
Take for instance these dancers from Odisha who told me that their martial dance is about the Paika rebellion against the British!
These ‘dancers’ belong to the martial classes of Odisha. Look at their stern faces.
The Paika rebellion was the First War of Independence against the British. To know more about this milestone in Indian history, read this article> http://www.thehindu.com/todays-paper/tp-national/paika-bidroha-to-be-named-as-1st-war-of-independence/article19909264.ece
Delhi events and concerts- more pictures
Just yesterday, I went to the Jashn-e-Rekhta festival in Delhi.
The crowd comprising young boys and girls was swaying to the beats of this Sufi Rock Band.
If you are in Delhi while reading this post, then you should rush to the Major Dhyan Chand Stadium near the India Gate. This festival ends today.
Jashn-e-Rekhta is a combination of three Arabic words- Festival, Of, Urdu.
So this festival celebrates the Urdu language.
Urdu is rapidly falling into disuse. Many young people cannot read this language in its original script which is Arabic.
Urdu as a spoken language is very popular among Muslims but even this community cannot understand Arabic.
In a way, Jashn-e-Rekhta is trying to revive the interest of common people in this language.
I was encouraged to attend this festival by my friend, Aradhna Somani. Her brother, Sanjiv Saraf, is the main driver behind this festival.
This was the fourth edition of the festival and I was very thrilled to see several film artists and others come to the venue.
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