Amar Kanwar: Selected Work 1997-2006
A carefully selected retrospective of the past 10 years of Delhi film-maker Amar Kanwar’s work. Don’t miss Kanwar’s Trilogy, which explores India from three unique perspectives. Kanwar’s approach to film-making is more artistic than documentary. In the critically-acclaimed first part of the trilogy, A Season Outside, Kanwar narrates his impression of the Wagah border. “At first I saw colours…sometimes the colours of the mind tend to fly out.” In his portrait series, The Face, Kanwar tackles Burmese dictator Than Shwe, commenting on the capriciousness of public imagination and appealing for remembrance through the image. Apeejay Media Gallery, Apeejay TechnoPark, B II 40,41,42, Mohan Co-operative Industrial Estate, Mathura Road (2989-3765). Daily, 7pm-10pm.
In India, the real contours of the conflict in Kashmir are invariably buried under the facile depiction of an Innocent Population, trapped between the Terrorist’s Gun and the Army’s Boot. But after 18 years of a bloody armed struggle, after more than 60,000 dead civilians dead (and almost 7,000 enforced disappearances), what does “azadi” mean in Kashmir? There are no easy answers, but film-maker Sanjay Kak looks at the many meanings of freedom—in the Martyr’s Graveyard, in the government psychiatric hospital, among Bhand folk performers and in the tense undercurrents of an Army Sadbhavana camp. India Habitat Centre, Lodhi Road (2468-2222). 7pm.
Out and About
Mar 15-April 15
Visit the Great Wall of China and walk across London’s Tower Bridge all in one day. The Global Village is coming to India for the first time. If you’re looking to shop, talk and eat international without stepping onto a plane, then it might be a good idea to hop into a car and drive off to this month-long festival. Shopping is one of the major attractions of the festival; the emphasis is on inviting international participants to give consumers a range of products. Other highlights include adventure sports like paintball, an global standard amusement park and lots of international cuisine. Noida Toll Bridge. Fee: adults Rs60, children Rs30. Parking available. Daily, 2pm-10pm.
Critically acclaimed for her deep, bhava-laden approach, Carnatic vocalist “Bombay” Jayashri Ramnath is counted today amongst a handful of musicians deeply committed to the uplift of the classical performing arts in India and around the world. She performs this week as part of the SPIC-MACAY Fest 2007. Ramnath has trained under some of the most accomplished names: Vidwan Sri Tiruvangaadu Jayaraman, TR Balamani, Vidwan Sri Mahalingam Pillai and violin legend Padma Shri Lalgudi G Jayaraman. FREE Indian Institute of Technology, Hauz Khas, 6pm.
MIDIval PunditZ Live with Friends
This ethno-electronic duo plays live with friends. Gaurav Raina and Tapan Raj fuse sounds of Indian classical and folk music with electronic beats and loops producing a mix of soundscapes and pulsing rhythms with gentle Indian-influenced electronica. The PunditZ host a Cyber Mehfil, bringing the audience closer to the music through visuals and music to complete an immersive experience. Laidbackwaters, Qutab Hotel, Shaheed Jeet Singh Marg (2652-1234), 9pm.
An old woman relives her life through recordings she’s made at different times of her life, remaking her memories as she edits and reworks the tapes. Amitesh Grover’s interactive multimedia performance in English, Hindi and Assamese, inspired by Samuel Beckett’s famous play Krapp’s Last Tape, looks at how memory influences identity. British Council, 17 Kasturba Gandhi Marg (2371-1401). Contact for invitations, 6:30pm.
Moteram Ka Satyagrah
Directed by Arvind Gaur, this musical satire delves into the complex relationship between religion and politics. The town of Banaras is readying itself to receive a new viceroy as per directions given by the magistrate. Pandit Moteram Shastri, the eponymous protagonist, decides to go on hunger strike to prevent the townsfolk from declaring a hartal. But does he succeed in keeping his hunger under control? Shri Ram Centre for the Performing Arts, 4 Safdar Hashmi Memorial Marg, Mandi House (2371-4307). Tickets Rs50-100, 6:30pm.
Until Mar 31
What Damien Hirst did with a dead shark in formaldehyde (an ode to having worked in a mortuary), Gupta has done with dabbas (Gupta’s continued ode to his small-town upbringing) and a sushi belt in “The Silk Route”. A smaller version has been constructed for Start.Stop. Three days before the opening of Start.Stop, Subodh Gupta spent hours in Lohar Chawl looking for tiffin cans made of brass and copper. “I didn’t find the dabbas, but I found other things,” he said. These “other things” will soon take on a life of their own. Once Gupta is done with them, they will not be objects as banal as a spoon or a pot. For instance, the utensil that so perplexed gallery workers at Bodhi, had been sublimated into a gaping creation vaguely reminiscent of a vagina. 28 K Dubash Marg, near Rhythm House, Kala Ghoda, Colaba (6610-0124), 11am-7pm.
Catch antiquated martial arts at the breezy amphitheatre on Carter Road. One of the six philosophies mentioned in the ancient Hindu text of Atharvaveda, Dhanur Vidya is a martial art form which features free hand fights (bahu vidya), weapon combat which includes staff, swords, ropes and body combat (mool vidya). Jagdish Bramta and his students will perform this highly stylized skill to music. FREE Carter Road Amphitheatre, Carter Road Promenade, opposite Café Coffee Day, Bandra (W), 7pm.
The Pursuit of Happyness
Releasing Mar 9
Will Smith does a sensitive turn in Gabriele Muccino’s The Pursuit of Happyness. Smith’s Chris Gardner is a salesman fallen on hard times whose wife leaves him and their five-year-old son (Jaden Smith, Will Smith’s real-life son). Father and son weather unemployment, homelessness and a spell in jail till Gardner’s non-paying internship at a stock-broking firm turns their fortunes. All major theatres.
Releasing Mar 9
Beyoncé Knowles, Anika Noni Rose and Jennifer Hudson play film analogues of The Supremes. The ambitious singers are working hard at becoming pop stars when they’re chosen as back-up leads for the Eddie Murphy’s legendary singer James “Thunder” Early. On the way to the top, the girls deal with love, hate and greed. While Knowles is the star among the girls, all eyes are on Hudson, whose smashing performance won her a Best Supporting Actress Oscar. Watch out for Hudson crooning “And I Am Telling You I’m Not Going”. All major theatres.
Woody at Dome
Unwind to mojitos and lounge sounds by Kiwi saxophonist and DJ, Jarod “Woody” Wood. For the past year, Wood has been achieving the near impossible: he has been managing to get the chatterati to (occasionally) stop yacking and actually pay attention to the band playing music on stage. The 38-year-old —who regularly plays saxophone, flute and bansuri while spinning downbeat, electronic music—first trained as a Western classical musician. Seven years ago, he was so mesmerized on hearing a bansuri solo in the film Earth that it led him to seek out Hariprasad Chaurasia. Dome, The InterContinental Marine Drive, 135 Marine Drive (6639-9999), 9pm.
Sanjeev Abhyankar + Ashwini Bhide-Deshpande
Pandit Jasraj’s student, Sanjeev Abhyankar, who has emerged as one of the most authoritative voices of the Mewati gharana, teams up with acclaimed Jaipur-Atrauli gharana vocalist Ashwini Bhide-Deshpande in a Jasrangi jugalbandi. In a typical Jasrangi jugalbandi (which gets its name from its inventor, Mewati gharana maestro Pandit Jasraj), a male and a female singer perform together, though not simultaneously. The male singer renders a phrase of a raga in his pitch, after which the female singer renders a phrase of another raga in her pitch. Abhyankar sings the raga Haveli Basant, while Bhide-Deshpande performs Puriya Dhanashree. FREE Ravindra Natya Mandir, Sayani Road, Prabhadevi, behind Siddhivinayak Mandir (2431-2956), 8pm.