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First Published: Thu, Jul 31 2008. 10 13 PM IST

Remixed: Piau by Sandip M. Pisalkar, presented by Gallery Art Konsult.
Remixed: Piau by Sandip M. Pisalkar, presented by Gallery Art Konsult.
Updated: Thu, Jul 31 2008. 10 13 PM IST
DELHI
Art
Triviality of our Everyday Existence
From 1 August
South Korea may be the land of kimchi, cosmetic surgery and karaoke. But, at least according to Gigi Scaria’s new photography exhibition, the capital of that country is also cellphone-addicted, highly photogenic and sometimes strangely similar to our own city. The body of work on view at Palette came from a five-month residency that Scaria held at the National Art Studio in Seoul, South Korea, from November. In this show, which consists of two series of photographs and a video, Scaria proves he is as capable with a camera in his hands as he is with his brushes, pencils and pens.
Monday-Saturday, 11am-7pm. Palette Art Gallery, 14, Golf Links (41743034).
Class of 2008
1-6 August
Remixed: Piau by Sandip M. Pisalkar, presented by Gallery Art Konsult.
Gallery Art Konsult presents this group exhibition by nine young artists from MS University of Baroda. The artists are Boshudhara Mukherjee, Sandip M. Pisalkar, Bhrigu Kr Sharma, Parvin Khambal, Shreyas Karle, Jyotirmoy De, Swetha B.V., Bhavin Mistry and Hardik Kansara. Their works include experimental efforts in mixed media—from acrylic sheet and wood to sand, coloured beads, rubber doormats and mirrors. Pisalkar, who is interested in “remixing” the old to make it relevant to the present, has an interesting work called ‘Piau’—a functional minibar in the shape of a water dispenser. Another one of his works is Kansara’s rubber doormat, inset with round mirrors that create an optical illusion of looking into an alternate world at your feet. His comb with a face on the teeth is another funky piece. Other artists experiment with illusions, perspectives and colours on canvas.
Monday-Saturday, 11am-7pm. Travancore Palace, Kasturba Gandhi Marg (23382067).
Music
Lalit Arpan 2008
2-3 August
Asavari is back with this year’s edition of the festival that promotes young talent in the field of Indian performing arts. The organization was established by Shovana Narayan in 1979 and the festival, now in its sixth year, also aims to inculcate an interest in audiences for Indian classical art forms. This year witnesses haveli ‘sangeet’ (Tarun Krishna Das, 3 August), shehnai (Sanjiv and Ashwini Shankar, 2 August) and tabla concerts (2-3 August) as well as dance performances.
7pm. Stein auditorium, Habitat World, India Habitat Centre, Lodhi Road (24682222).
Artistes Unlimited
5 August
Delhi’s own choir, AU, has consistently set higher standards both for original as well as socially responsible music. Expect a lively set.
7pm. Habitat World, India Habitat Centre, Lodhi Road (24682222).
Theatre
Aik Machine Kabadi Ki
3 August
Director, Dinesh Ahlawat; writer, S.N. Nautiyal; cast, Lucky Kataria, Supriya, Kashish Khan, Kamaal Mirza, Dinesh Ahlawat, Saurabh Vaish, Ajay, Manish Srivastava, Monika Misra, Gaurav Ratra, Nishant, Deepak and Baby Kanishka.
After buying an apparently useless machine from a university professor, Kallan Kabadi sits down to repair it. Things start going haywire when Husna, his old and grey-haired wife, accidentally enters the machine and becomes young and beautiful. Kallan’s daughter’s fiancé falls in love with his mother-in-law to-be and to make matters worse, greedy moneylender Lala Ram Bharosey insists that Kallan use the machine to make him young and his wife pretty like Kareena Kapoor.
7pm. Shri Ram Centre for Performing Arts, 4, Safdar Hashmi Marg (23714307). Tickets, Rs100-300, available at the venue.
Film
Battle of Algiers
5 August
Gillo Pontecorvo’s stirring anatomy of an urban uprising—the violent nationalist revolt in Algiers in 1956 and 1957—feels strikingly relevant today. It shows the real consequences of defying popular will with institutional aggression and military force, and of course there are those chilling scenes in which Algerian women dressed as Europeans plant four bombs in busy public spaces. The film arose directly out of the liberation movement it depicts: Post-independence in 1962, former rebel Saadi Yacef was released from jail, and with the support of the new government, he invited the Italian film-maker to dramatize his memoirs. The results are so fine—so modern—that I can’t think of a better film born of a political struggle.
The tone is mournful, the approach journalistic and the aesthetic direct as Pontecorvo reconstructs events on a grand scale on location in Algiers while never losing the intimacy of an Algerian woman quietly crying or a French couple walking past a checkpoint with the words, “It’s nothing we need to worry about.” Superb and unrivalled. Screening in collaboration with UTV World Movies. Directed by Gillo Pontecorvo. 2 hours, 15 minutes.
7pm. Epicentre Apparel House, sector 44, Gurgaon (95124-2715000).
Dance
Rachna Yadav (Kathak)
7 August
Rachna Yadav, a disciple of Aditi Mangaldas, will present Samvait, an interpretation of the five elements on behalf of the Drishtikon Foundation.
7pm. Habitat World, India Habitat Centre, Lodhi Road (24682222).
MUMBAI
Music
DJ Ma Faiza
1 August
Pune’s DJ Ma Faiza returns to Mumbai for a trance-fuelled night. Expect psychedelic tunes, progressive house and organic global beats when she takes over the console. The DJ has taken her brand of trance to some of the biggest festivals around the world, including the Boom Festival in Portugal. Besides DJing, Ma Faiza produces music, is the artists and repertoire head for her Masti music label and also actively contributes to music publications around the world.
10.30pm. Blue Frog, Mathuradas Mills Compound, Tulsi Pipe Road, Lower Parel. Tickets, Rs300 (40332300).
Advaita
6-7 August
There’s something incredibly twee about Delhi fusion rock band Advaita. Maybe it has something to do with their Sanskrit name, which means “non-duality”, or it might be the total earnestness with which they purport to make “spiritual music”. Or maybe, it’s metaphysical musings—such as ‘Sometimes I don’t know why I feel this way/Am I just a state of mind?’—heard on songs such as ‘Hamsadhwani’. It’s a good thing then, that the octet makes some of the most original music to come out of the capital in years.
Comprising 20-somethings, guitarist Abhisek Mathur, keyboard player Anindo Bose, drummer Aman Singh Rathore, sarangi player Suhail Yusuf Khan, tabla player Mohit Lal, bassist Gaurav Chintamani and singers Chayan Adhikari and Ujwal Nagar, who provide the English and Hindustani vocals, respectively, Advaita plays an ingenious mix of rock, Indian classical and electronic music.
10.30pm. Blue Frog, Mathuradas Mills Compound, Tulsi Pipe Road, Lower Parel. Tickets, Rs300 (40332300).
Art
Metamorphosis II
From 1 August
Jehangir Jani inaugurates Lower Parel’s newest gallery with charcoal drawings and sculptures.
Monday-Saturday, 11am-7pm. New Mahalaxmi Silk Mills, Mathuradas Mills Compound, Tulsi Pipe Road, Lower Parel.
Books
A Blue Hand
2 August
Deborah Baker speaks about her new book, ‘A Blue Hand—The Beats in India’, which follows Allen Ginsberg and his companions as they travel from the ashrams in the Himalayan foothills to Delhi is opium dens and the burning pyres of Varanasi. Adil Jussawalla, Prabod Parikh and Jerry Pinto will participate in the discussion. Baul musician Babukishan Baul will perform. Cocktails will follow.
7pm. Jnanapravaha, Queen’s Mansion, third floor, next to Cathedral Middle School, AK Nayak Marg, Fort (22072974/22072975).
Around town
The World As One
5 August
A lot has happened in Germany since the Berlin Wall came down in 1989. In the ensuing years, the reunified nation learnt to live with a single educational system, ties with neighbouring Poland have improved and many argue that social and living conditions have worsened. Glimpses of Germany’s journey will be on view in Mumbai at ‘The World as One’, a photo exhibition at the Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Vastu Sangrahalaya, through August.
Organized by Germany’s Institute of Foreign Relations and Max Mueller Bhavan, the exhibition forms a representative sample of 1990s’ professional documentary photography. Nineteen German photographers exhibit their independently researched creations and themes cover the effects of German unification, the withdrawal of the Russian army from Germany and the pace of economic and social change.
Tuesday-Sunday, 10.30am-6pm. Coomaraswamy Hall, Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Vastu Sangrahalaya, Mahatma Gandhi Road, Colaba (22844484).
Theatre
Gidhade
6 August
Written by Vijay Tendulkar, ‘Gidhade’ (The Vultures) is a dark, disturbing Marathi play about a family edging towards bankruptcy. Brothers Ramya and Umya and their sister Manik will go to any length to secure a share of their father’s diminishing fortune. In their greedy quest for survival, they indulge in capricious, violent acts. Trapped within this bleak landscape are Rajaninath, their exiled brother, and Rama, Ramya’s wife, the only two characters able to resist the vulture-like behaviour.
7.30pm. Nehru Centre auditorium, Worli (24964680). Tickets available at the venue from 4 August.
BANGALORE
Art
Three Degrees of Separation
1 August
The Olive Art Initiative presents a group show of three young artists from Delhi—Rahul Chaudhury, Bara Babu Mahto and Manoj Kumar Paswan. The show, ‘Three Degrees of Separation’ will focus on the notion of the hidden desire of each person to express himself. Chaudhury has studied Indian and European art at the National Museum, illustration and graphics at the Shankar Academy of Art and has been part of a technical workshop in theatre at the National School of Drama, apart from studying painting at Triveni Kala Sangam between 1995 and 2001. ‘Burning Desire’ is the name of the series that he’s been working on for the last four years. The show at Olive will showcase the piece ‘Shadows and Sound’ from the ‘Burning Desire’ series. Mahto will display a selection of paintings of semi-abstract landscapes and others on rituals and traditions in Indian villages.
Although Mahto is a specialist in sculpture, he’s chosen to bring together his paintings for this show. His works are “neither realistic nor abstract” and can thus only be termed “semi-abstract”, explained a note from the gallery. Mahto’s works will focus on human memories that manifest themselves in a person’s life. Paswan is from Madhubani (Bihar), and also studied at Jamia Millia Islamia. He is currently working on a series titled ‘Empty Desire’. Paswan’s inspirations, he said, are in “nature and the society; creating a sub-text between them, as a kind of bridge between the two empty desires”. His style is experimental, in oil, acrylic, pen and ink and charcoal, and his works are basically based on the migration of people from rural to urban India.
Noon-11pm. Olive Beach, 16, Wood Street, Ashok Nagar (9844024869).
Recreations
1-7 August
Neduchelian, a performance artist, will present his recreated masterpieces at the Karnataka Chitrakala Parishath. Neduchelian, or “Cheli”, was awarded the title of “Kalai Gnayiru” from Thiruvalluvar Elakiya Mandram, Chennai, in 1999 and is also the founder of Artyflys, a group art movement.
7am-8pm. Sunday, 7am-noon. Art Complex, Kumara Krupa Road (22261816).
Music
The Chronic Blues
1 August
Peter Isaac and his merry band of bluesmen and woman perform an acoustic set at Le Rock in the sixth concert of the ‘Fuel Unplugged’ series. The band is known to pull audience members to the stage to play or sing along with them. So, if you play an instrument, bring it along; you could well end up on stage with them.
7.30pm. Le Rock, No. 3, Rest House Road, off Brigade Road. Tickets, Rs150 (41231001).
Around town
Great outdoors conference
2 August
Join an indoor conference on the outdoors. Aimed at stakeholders in tourism, adventure sports, corporate training and human resources, ‘The Great Outdoors of the South’ is a chance to suss out prospects of public-private partnership in adventure tourism in Karnataka. Learn about the potential for adventure tourism in Tamil Nadu or eco-tourism initiatives in Kerala. Also, find out exactly what employees get on corporate outbound activities.
9.30am. Goldfinch Hotel, 32/3, Crescent Road, High Grounds, Race Course Road. Tickets, Rs500. To register, call Susheela Nair on 9448363336.
Talk on energy
5 August
The former senior energy adviser to the US government, Griffin M. Thompson, speaks on the reliability and affordability of energy services required for a developing economy with emphasis on the risks and impact of over-dependence on oil, global climate change and other environmental liabilities.
6pm. Bangalore International Centre, Teri Complex, 4th Main, 2nd Cross, Domlur, 2nd Stage (25359680).
Theatre
Love Letters
3 August
Director, Rahul da Cunha; writer, A.R. Gurney; cast, Shernaz Patel, Rajit Kapur. Duration, 1 hour, 10 minutes.
Based on A.R. Gurney’s witty and poignant script, the play is a bittersweet journey that maps 50 years of the relationship between childhood friends Melissa Gardner (Shernaz Patel) and Andrew Makepeace (Rajit Kapur)—two people who are meant for each other, but kept apart both by circumstances and egos. The play is narrated through letters that are read out aloud, with the fine chemistry between the two conjuring both a frank friendship as well as a simmering sexual awareness.
7.30pm. Rangashankara 36/2, 8th Cross, JP Nagar, 2nd Phase. Tickets, Rs200 (9886998550).
The Dumb Waiter
2 August
Director, Harish Seshadri; writer, Harold Pinter; cast, Shashank Purushotham, Sanjeev Nair.
‘The Dumb Waiter’ (another one-act offering from Pinter) sees two assassins, Ben and Gus, waiting in a basement kitchen of a restaurant, ready for an assignment. Ben, the seasoned professional and senior partner on the team, calmly bides his time reading the newspaper while Gus is distinctly edgy about what is to ensue. But the wait for their victim is punctuated repeatedly by the arrival of a “dumb waiter” (an elevator used to transport food to the first floor) mysteriously carrying down food orders that get increasingly exotic as the play progresses. The uncertainty of the wait, the nature of their grim task, the conflicting personalities of the hit men and the ludicrousness of receiving orders in an unused kitchen all combine to spark off a story of intrigue and irony with a numbing climax.
Shows at 3pm, 5pm, 8pm. Alliance Francaise, 108, Thimmaiah Road, Vasanth Nagar. Tickets, Rs150.
RECOMMENDED
DELHI
Music
Vishnu Digambar Sangeet Samaroh
1-3 August
Vinaychandra Maudgalya instated the Vishnu Digambar Jayanti Sangeet Samaroh six decades ago in memory of V.D. Paluskar, who had established the Gandharva Mahavidyalaya in Lahore in 1901. Paluskar also played a huge role in bringing classical music out of the private realm of the darbar and ensuring that classical musicians enjoy a certain degree of respect. No musician charges their professional fee for this festival—perhaps the oldest festival in the capital—and virtually every stalwart worth his/her salt has performed here. The school’s original policy of teaching Carnatic music to promote a healthy respect between both traditions is kept alive and this year’s representative from the Carnatic tradition is flautist Shashank Subramanyam. Other performers for this year’s edition include Kedia Bandhu, Pandit Ulhas Kashalkar, Manjusha Patil, Pandit Shivkumar Sharma, Pandit Anindo Chatterjee, Anubrata Chatterjee, Pandit Debu Chaudhuri and Pandit Jasraj.
Morning, 10am onwards; evening, 6.30pm onwards. Kamani Auditorium, 1, Copernicus Marg, Mandi House (23388084). For passes and enquiries, call Gandharva Mahavidyalaya (23233791 or 23238784).
MUMBAI
Film
Caramel
From 1 August
Take sugar, water and lemon juice, mix it, and you’ve got Beirut’s favourite depilatory product, a sticky goo which removes feminine hair, though not without a certain struggle. Such is the eponymous Caramel in actor-writer-director Nadine Labaki’s delightful first feature, an ensemble drama that explores the secret world of a Lebanese beauty parlour where the women struggle to make the best of a society which so often limits their options.
Labaki herself plays the 30-something daughter from a Christian family who should be off their hands by now—except that she’s having a secret affair with a married man. Her Muslim co-workers, meanwhile, have problems of their own, including a bride desperate to hide the fact that she’s not quite as virginal as her in-laws would like to believe and a tomboyish type whose only apparent outlet for her sexual longings is delivering creamy scalp massage to an obviously colluding female client.
In surroundings of faded would-be glamour, Lebanon’s bloody recent history and religious tensions barely get much of a look-in, since the film prioritizes personal intrigues played out by a largely non-professional cast (the mad old ladies next door are a particular treasure) which brings an impeccable authenticity to the proceedings. Labaki’s direction favours an affectionate amble: her screenplay throws up few genuine surprises, yet this is, frankly, a lovely film. Insisting on the bittersweet buzz of tiny female victories in the fraught milieu she describes as “my Beirut”, it’s lovingly shaped and deeply felt, a happy, sad charmer which deserves a wide audience.
Across cinemas.
BANGALORE
Dance
Adhyaya
1 August
Nritarutya, a contemporary dance trust, began Adhyaya six years ago as a means of providing a platform to original and innovative work. Nritarutya funds the event entirely, therefore allowing dancers to perform before varied audiences. This year, they have brought down performers of three different dance forms. Kathak exponent Anuj Mishra will perform a Kathak ‘paramparaghat’ (traditional recital), featuring a Ram ‘vandana’ (a devotional piece), ‘teen taal’ (16 beats), a ‘bhava’ (expression) piece based on the Geetopadesha, ‘taal druth’—a fast-paced dance piece that is done to the ‘bols’ of Lucknow gharana, and finally, 103 ‘chakars’.
The second artist, Maja Drobac, a contemporary dancer from Croatia who has trained in Bharatanatyam as well as contemporary dance and movement, explores the power of dreams through the native Indian shamanic tradition of dream-catching in a piece on the themes “if a dream could escape the dream-catcher” and “what sort of dream it would be”.
The third and fourth artists are Rajamally and Haritha, Bharatanatyam dancers from the Kalakshetra Foundation, Chennai.
6.30pm. Seva Sadan, 14th Cross, West Park Road, opposite MLA College, Malleswaram (23347830).
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First Published: Thu, Jul 31 2008. 10 13 PM IST
More Topics: Music | Art | Film | Theatre | V.D. Paluskar |