South Asian Bands Festival
The enthusiastic response to the first edition of the South Asian Bands Festival in 2007 prompted the organizers to put together another one. Presented by the Indian Council for Cultural Relations in association with the ministry of external affairs and Seher, this year’s line-up includes 14 bands, of which six will be from outside India. Some of the Indian acts include Them Clones, Swarathma, Shaa’ir + Func, Parikrama, Skinny Alley and Vishal-Shekhar. While Miles and Robin and the New Revolution represent Bangladesh and Nepal, respectively, representation from Pakistan is conspicuous by its absence.
Purana Qila. For enquiries, call 41628600 or visit www.sehernow.in
The group from Aleppo in Syria will present Sufi trance music. Their version of the music is quite different from the style we are accustomed to in India. The Syrian version relies on West Asian instruments and the vocalizing is modelled on Arab classical music. Another eye-catching feature is the presence of dervishes. Not to be missed.
The event is part of the first international festival of sacred arts to be held in the country.
Contact The Attic, 36, Regal Building, first floor (23746050) for details or visit www.sacredartsfestivaldelhi. org
8pm. Siri Fort auditoria Complex, Khel Gaon Marg. Tickets, Rs500, Rs250 and Rs100 (students only).
Mauruangi of Mizoram
Mauruangi is a sweet little girl who is tormented by her wicked stepmother and stepsister after her own mother drowns. Her mother, who first transforms into a fish and then a tree, tries to help her, but the wicked stepmother destroys her each time. Against all odds, Mauruangi eventually wins the love of the lord of the plains, Vai Lalpa.
6.30pm. Akshara Theatre, 11B, Baba Kharag Singh Marg (9313009524). Tickets, Rs100, available at the venue.
Measure 4 Measure
Directed by Jarka Heller. Writer: William Shakespeare; adapted by Jarka Heller. Cast: David Ault, Helen Cashin, Emily Murphy, Robert Wilson, Kate Parker-Frost.
Heller is the founder and director of an Udaipur-based troupe of British actors, Out of Cocoon Theatre Company, which hopes to keep interest in Shakespeare’s works alive in India. Heller chose to adapt ‘Measure for Measure’ because it is one of Shakespeare’s lesser-known plays. “Usually, it’s the same crop of plays that are staged time and time again with little or no dramatic changes as nobody wants to meddle with the bard’s words,” she says.
Heller adds that she has made changes to the original text, however. “I have cut out a lot of the text and shortened some scenes. I have made it simpler, but the play still retains the flavour of Shakespeare.” Heller’s version also has fewer characters, and some actors play multiple roles.
7.30pm. Habitat World, India Habitat Centre, Lodhi Road (24682222). Tickets, Rs100-500, available at the Habitat programme desk.
Extended Teenage Era (contemporary)
When Samir Akika began to choreograph his latest dance theatre piece ‘Extended Teenage Era’ (ETE) in 2007, the French-Algerian performer asked his seven dancers to recollect key moments from their favourite TV shows. Thus, in ETE, dancers quote the TV show ‘Friends’, play games, doodle and build objects out of cardboard. Akika’s work follows the Bausch dance theatre model but in ETE, in addition to contemporary dance, viewers will see the free and fun movements that characterize hip hop.
Keeping in mind the free-for-all philosophy that many young people share, Akika wants the audience to record the performance and even upload it on YouTube.
7.30pm. Kamani auditorium, 1, Copernicus Marg (23388084).
Bengaluru Mandi—Hidden Hues of Bangalore Markets
Until 22 February
“The mandis (marketplaces) of Bangalore are like threads that bind today’s modernity and way of life with that of the yesteryears’ charm,” says a note on ‘Bengaluru Mandis’, the first coffee-table book published by the Bangalore Photography Club. The club was started in late 2004 by a bunch of enthusiasts who met on an online group; it now has over 3,700 members, and the show at the Goethe-Institut this fortnight is a selection of pictures from the book.
For this project, members of the club spent time in markets across the city, such as the city market, Russell market and in Madiwala and Jayanagar to capture the colours, faces, expressions and moods in these bazaars.
9am-6.30pm. Goethe-Institut/Max Mueller Bhavan, 716, CMH Road, Indira Nagar 1st Stage (25205308).
Masks of God & Goddess
‘The Masks of God’ series of paintings by Prakash G. Nayak had “its genesis in the tantra-mantra rituals and practices of the early settlers in Uttara Kannada (a district of Karnataka)”, says a note from the artist, while the series ‘Goddess’ was created from his “impressions of (the) folk culture of coastal Karnataka”. Nayak, who studied art at Dharwad University, is currently based in Bangalore. He received an award from the Karnataka Lalitkala Academy in 2004.
11am-7pm. Gallerie Pablo, JRV Court, 18, Edward Road, off Queens Road (9880872875).
Samskruthi Dance Festival
Sathyanarayana Raju started this festival in 1998 with the intention of providing a privately-organized performance platform for dancers ignored by the state government. The festival begins on Friday with Soundarya Srivatsa performing Bharatanatyam in the traditional ‘margam’ style at 6.15pm and Madhu Natraj performing a traditional repertoire of Kathak at 7.15pm. On Saturday, audiences will get to watch another Bharatanatyam performance, this time by Padmini Upadhya, at 6pm, followed by Kathak by the Nadam Ensemble at 6.45pm, and Bharatanatyam by Abhijnaa, a trio comprising Prathibha Ramaswamy, Aranya Narain and Nivedita Sharma, at 7.30pm. The festival concludes on Sunday with Bharatanatyam by Radhika Rangamanujam at 6pm, followed by Kathak by Hari and Chetna at 7.15pm.
ADA Rangamandira, 109, JC Road (22219388).
The popular vocalist is a student of T.N. Seshagopalan, and has been performing since he was 10. He will be accompanied by Delhi Sundararajan on violin, Trichy Sankaran on ‘mridangam’ and B.S. Purushotham on ‘kanjira’.
6pm. Purandara Bhavana, 8th E Main, behind Indiranagar Club, HAL 2nd Stage (25215525). Entry for non-members, Rs50.
21 February-10 March
Photographer Shahid Datawala doesn’t entirely believe that life in a metropolis is an uncomplicated “old versus new” narrative. What he does believe in is preserving images of edifices and constructions that are entirely neglected, in extreme states of ruin, destined to be razed or in abandoned stages of incompletion.
10am-6pm, Monday-Saturday. Tasveer, Sua House, 26/1, Kasturba Cross Road (22128358).
Narendra Yadav deals with social conditioning in ‘Pavlov’s Dog’. His installations are clean, often shiny and all smoothly finished. Though the installations have complicated titles and technicalities, Yadav wants viewers to cringe at parts of an accident-damaged car, recoil at the sight of a startlingly realistic foetus bobbing in a metallic sphere, be surprised at things popping out of an open book and feel the sympathetic pain that comes from seeing a needle go through a hand.
11am-7pm, Tuesday-Sunday. Warehouse at 3rd Pasta, 6/7 3rd Pasta Lane, Colaba (22023056).
Hamlet–The Clown Prince
A company of clowns runs amok with the script in Rajat Kapoor’s irreverent adaptation of Shakespeare’s ‘Hamlet’. Short of ideas, the clowns decide to present the famous Shakespearean tragedy with a comic twist. There’s no room for suspense as they reveal, right at the beginning, the fate of the main characters: “Hamlet dies, Ophelia dies, Gertrude dies, Claudius dies.” What follows is a hilarious re-enactment of the series of events leading to the massacre and a simultaneous depiction of the lives of the clowns.
6pm and 9pm, 21-22 February. Prithvi Theatre, Juhu Church Road, Vile Parle (W) (26149546). Call venue for ticket prices.
Koi Sunta Hai
Documentary film-maker Shabnam Virmani has made three documentaries for the Kabir Project, which was initiated in 2003 by the Srishti School of Art, Design and Technology in Bangalore to understand the legacy and relevance of the 15th century mystic poet Kabir. One of these, ‘Koi Sunta Hai: Journeys with Kumar and Kabir’, will be screened in Mumbai this fortnight. Virmani’s film looks at the work of renowned classical music singer Kumar Gandharva and weaves his music with folk traditions that celebrate Kabir. The documentary will reveal how a serious bout of tuberculosis led to a fruitful engagement with Kabir.
7pm. Prithvi House, opposite Prithvi Theatre, first floor, Janki Kutir, Juhu Church Road, Juhu (26149546).
The Dover Lane Festival in Kolkata is one of the most well-attended outdoor classical music events in the country. In order to encourage young talent, a competition is held every year for musicians under the age of 25. Sitar player Sahana Banerjee was only 17 when she won the first prize at the festival in 1990. Now based in Mumbai, Banerjee has lived in France, Germany and Switzerland over the past decade. Her time in those countries enabled her to participate in fusion projects with Italian flautist Mashimo Marchelli and French pianist Shani Diluka. However, her concert will only comprise raga music.
5.30pm. Shivaji Park Nagrik Sangha, Shivaji Park, opposite Vanita Samaj, Veer Savarkar Road Dadar (W).
An Evening with Bei Dao
Chinese poet Bei Dao has been banished from his homeland since the Tiananmen Square massacres of 1989, living proof that words can indeed be more powerful than weapons. Bei Dao’s poem ‘Huida’ (The Answer) was, in the words of one commentator, the ‘Blowing in the Wind’ of the democracy movement and appeared on wall posters everywhere. The poet was away in Berlin when the demonstrations broke out and was not allowed to return home. Dao will read some of his poems in Mumbai this week; a conversation with fiction writer Sharmistha Mohanty will follow.
6.30pm. Jnanapravaha, Queens Mansion, third floor, AK Nayak Marg, Fort (22072974/2975).
What happens when two yoga teachers, one of whom is also a professional clown, decide to improvise? Circus yoga, but naturally. Yoli Maya Yeh, who completed her own circus yoga teacher-training course in Chicago in 2006, teaches the fundamentals of flying partner yoga in her workshops every Sunday. She also teaches traditional Hatha yoga, and holds prenatal and post-natal classes.
998, 1st Main, 1st Block, Koramangala, Bangalore. Call 9980456679 for details
Mango Tree in Mumbai, which supports farming communities across India, has launched a membership scheme called The Hive. Subscribers will receive a new variety of honey every month. Their collection of single-flora honeys includes Wild Forest honey from the Narmada valley, Litchi honey from the ‘litchi’ orchards of Bihar and Sweet Clover honey from the Chambal area of Madhya Pradesh. Pay Rs1,200 to subscribe to The Hive.
Call (0)9833154478 or visit honeyetc.blogspot.com or www.utmt.in
Two places can now be served up in a Martini glass: Manhattan and Dharavi. The Manhattan—strong, sweet, sometimes fruity—was most recently adored by the girls of ‘Sex and the City’ and previously preferred dry by Frank Sinatra. The Dharavi, on the other hand, is briny, murky and not dry. It was certainly not invented in the neighbourhood it is named after. The drink is Soul Fry Casa’s name for its dirty Martini, made dirtier (with muddled olives). Rs200.
At Soul Fry Casa, 111, Karimji Building, MG Road, Mumbai (66720743)
Ar first glance, it seems like Sharada Dwivedi and Rahul Mehrotra’s ‘Bombay Deco’ (Eminence Design; Rs3,000) has more pages than the city has Art Deco buildings. Surely a handful of cinema halls, offices and curvilinear balconies built in Colaba, Churchgate and Marine Drive between 1930 and 1947 can’t fill 312 glossy pages? They don’t. ‘Bombay Deco’ stretches beyond the usual, covering print advertisements, mini-mansions on Nepean Sea Road and Malabar Hill, and middle-class buildings in Dadar’s Hindu and Parsi colonies, plus several instances that blend local and Western styles.--Rachel Lopez