Red the Earth/Ajab Saal Tha Wo
Safdar Hashmi Memorial Trust (Sahmat) organizes an educational exhibition in Hindi and English on the mutiny of 1857. Extensively researched, the exhibition has been updated from its original version in 1997 with new material, some never seen in public for many years, including a rare photograph of Rani Lakshmibai. Many of the proclamations which were issued during the rebellion are in the original as well as in translation. There is an entire section with maps and photographs on the destruction of Delhi by the British after their victory. 10am-5pm (Tue-Sun). Gandhi Smriti and Darshan Samiti, Birla House, Tees January Marg (2301-2843). Free.
Historical Epic II
18 July onwards
The second installation of Osian’s history of the 1857 uprising through visual imagery. This exhibition includes old prints of photographs by Felice Beato and others, engravings and etchings, and film stills. 10am-8pm (Mon-Sat). India Habitat Centre, Lodhi Road (2468-2001). Free.
An Odissi recital by Kolkata’s Nandini Ghoshal. A disciple of Poushali Mukherjee and Kelucharan Mahapatra, she will be accompanied by Debashis Sarkar on vocals, Kishore Ghosh on the pakhawaj and Jayanta Banerjee on the sitar. 6.30pm. India International Centre, 40, Lodhi Estate, Max Mueller Marg, (2461-9431). Free.
The students of Alpana will present their first ballet, Ganga. The music has been composed by Prashant Behera and the ballet has been choreographed and directed by Alpana Nayak, an Odissi dancer and a disciple of the late Deva Prasad Das and Sudhakar Sahoo. 7pm. Poorva Sanskritik Kendra, 14, Laxmi Nagar District Centre, Vikas Marg (4244-6060). Free.
Pushpa Hans + Shanti Hiranand
Hans, who was a popular actor and playback singer in the 1940s and 1950s, will sing a programme consisting entirely of Punjabi folk songs. The evening will also feature a ghazal recital by Hiranand, a former student of Aijaz Hussain Khan and legendary thumri, dadra and ghazal singer Begum Akhtar. 7pm. India Habitat Centre, Lodhi Road (2468-2001). Free, for invitations, contact the venue or the Punjabi Academy, DDA Community Centre, Sadar Thana Road, Paharganj, Motia Khan (2351-4692).
It is understandable that at a time of Baristas and Indian Idol, a play about the death of political idealism might seem dated. Set in the mid-1970s, Vijay Tendulkar’s Kanyadaan is a brutal indictment of the kind Nehruvian nationalism that rings hollow despite its good intentions. But after getting over your initial impulse to dismiss all that talk about true democracy and classless society as naive, you find that Kanyadaan engages at many levels and is not as far removed from contemporary India as you had thought. The action takes place in the Devlalikar household. Nath and Seva are both left-leaning social activists and secure in the knowledge that they are doing their bit for India’s downtrodden. Their self-assurance is sent into a tailspin when their daughter Jyoti decides to marry Arun, a Dalit. Nath is ecstatic. The entry of a Dalit into his Brahmin family could prove the possibility of successful inter-caste marriage. But having only engaged with Dalits from behind a microphone, he is knocked out by his son-in-law’s raw anger and his daughter’s merciless dissection of his ideals. 7.30pm (duration: 1 hour, 30 minutes). Kamani Auditorium, 1, Copernicus Marg (2338-8084). Tickets: Rs100-300, available at Tekson’s Bookshop from 14 July, and at the venue on the day of the show.
A wonderfully Jamesian study of Victorian India in which a neglected wife, on the point of breaking through to self-awareness, begins to perceive male dominion as a hollow façade of beards, braces and boredom. Immensely funny (with the dialogue peppered with solemn anglicisms), but also elegant and gracefully moving as the heroine flirts with romance and domestic tragedy on her way to becoming the New Woman. Certainly one of Satyajit Ray’s best films, with a superb music score of his own composition. 8pm (duration: 1 hour, 57 minutes). Bhavan’s Cultural Centre, Bhavan’s College, Munshi Nagar, Andheri (W) (3293-8017). Free.
Hum Deewane Hum Parwane
IPTA marks the 150th anniversary of the 1857 revolt with a set of two one-act plays directed by veteran dramatist Ramesh Talwar. The plays look at the lives of several freedom fighters, highlighting the cases of Ashfaqullah Khan and Ram Prasad Bismil. The two were hanged for looting a train in Kakori, Uttar Pradesh. Their theft was an act of rebellion against the British. 9pm (duration: 1 hour, 45 minutes). Prithvi Theatre, Janki Kutir, Juhu Church Road, Vile Parle (2614-9546). Tickets: Rs50-100.
30 Days in September
In Lillete Dubey’s play, Mala, a victim of child abuse, tries to find solace from her past in promiscuity. She meets Deepak, who refuses to let her end their relationship and encourages her to confront the man who had molested her. 7pm (duration: 1 hour, 30 minutes) Experimental Theatre, NCPA, Near Hilton Tower, Nariman Point. Tickets: Rs200.
The play, in which Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi becomes the Mahatma, opens in South Africa, where Gandhi is at the beginning of his activist career. Already, he shows the stirrings of the persuasive skills that would later lead a country to freedom. But for all his courage and conviction, Gandhi is fraught with self-doubt, as is evident from the conversations between Mohandas and the man he will become, who is also his conscience. While the device of pitting the present against the potential is interesting, the conversations between Mohandas and Gandhi are sometimes pedantic. But it’s an important play to watch as it deals with a time in history that was crucial to the formation of our national and self-identity, a time that must not be forgotten. 6.30pm (duration: 2 hours). Experimental Theatre, NCPA, Near Hilton Tower, Nariman Point (6622-3737). Tickets: Rs200.
Latafat Hussain Khan Listening session
Soon after the formation of Maharashtra in 1960, the state’s cultural department began organizing music festivals across the province. However, a lack of funds and interest on the part of the organizers led to the festivals being stopped after 1980. Fortunately, a number of recordings of the performances that took place over the two decades have been carefully preserved by the department’s archival section. This month, the P.L. Deshpande Maharashtra Kala Academy will give fans of Agra gharana vocalist Latafat Hussain Khan (1921-83) the chance to hear his performances at these festivals.
This fortnight’s session will feature recordings of Latafat Hussain Khan singing ragas such as Maluha Kedar, Basant Bahar and a rare prakar of Kanada. Two highlights of the listening session will be his rendition of Jhan Jhan Payal Baje, the immortal Natbihag composition made famous by Faiyaz Khan, and a rare, splendid thumri in raga Khamaj. This will be a special treat because Agra gharana singers don’t usually sing the semi-classical form. Senior Agra gharana singer S.S. Haldankar will take the audience through the listening session and enrich it with his comments on Latafat Hussain Khan’s life and music. 6.30pm. Mini Theatre, Third Floor, P.L. Deshpande Academy, Ravindra Natya Mandir. Free.
Out & About
A series of talks on public art and architecture, Encounters is organized every Wednesday by the Kamala Raheja Vidyanidhi Institute of Architecture. Head to the institute this Wednesday to listen to sociologist Sandeep Pendse talk about the various roads to urban development. Pendse is a visiting faculty at the college. 10.45am. Kamala Raheja Vidyanidhi Institute of Architecture, Vidyanidhi Marg, JVPD, Vile Parle (W). For more details, call Kaushik Mukhopadyaya (2670-0918). Free.
A fan of Asha Bhonsle and Lata Mangeshkar, Sanchaita Chaudhuri was keen as a youngster on pursuing a career in playback singing. But a few lessons from the legendary Kirana vocalists, the Kanans, turned khayal into a lifelong passion for her. A Grade-A artiste of All India Radio, Chaudhuri is also a scholar at the ITC Academy in Kolkata. At her programme this fortnight, she will be accompanied by Anup Ghosh on the tabla and Damodarlal Ghosh on the harmonium. 6.30pm. India International Centre, 40, Lodhi Estate, Max Mueller Marg, (2461-9431). Free.
Until 25 July
A group of young Indian artists show us their wild side. Rohini Devasher, Kavita Desai and Kiran Chandra, among others, create some really experimental works. Look out for Devasher’s swirly “Hybrid” series and Desai’s layered prints. 11am-6.30pm (Mon-Sat). Project 88, BMP Building, NA Sawant Marg, near Colaba Fire Station, Colaba (2281-0066). Free.