Installations and woodcuts by Ranjani Shettar. The first installation, ‘Touch me not’, recalls the delicate plant of the same name, but it’s a whimsical echo, for its sturdy man-made materials are in obvious contrast to the theme of nature, both implied and intrinsic. The second installation, ‘Me, no, not me, buy me, eat me, wear me, have me, me, no, not me’, are five large pieces that take on the appearance of baskets or pitchers and, like the craft of basket-weaving, are literally woven together from strips of metal from old cars. With their dull hues of olive green, rust and blue and their curly metallic ends, the objects recall acorns scattered across a forest floor. Shettar also works with woodcuts, and the works on display here are notable for their size and the precision of cutting, carving and stamping. 11am-7pm (Mon-Sat). Talwar Gallery, C-84, Neeti Bagh (46050307).
Kuchipudi dancer Swapnasundari has worked towards the revival and rejuvenation of ‘vilasini natyam’, a temple dance form that is yet to be officially recognized as a classical form by the Sangeet Natak Akademi. Her show, titled ‘Heritage and Harmony’, will be a traditional ‘vilasini natyam’ performance. 6.30pm. Kamani Auditorium, 1, Copernicus Marg (23388084). For further information, contact Kuchipudi Dance Centre (26889166).
Gaurav Raina+Karsh Kale
One half of the Midival Punditz and Karsh Kale combine forces to blend classical music and instruments with electronic beats. SixMonthStory, The Daffodil Hotel, ahead of Tivoli Garden, Chhattarpur Road. Call 9910169745 for details.
Rashmi Agarwal+Sudeep Rai
Vocalist Agarwal has trained at the Allahabad University under Pt Ramashreya Jha, and in the lighter forms under Savita Devi. She is presently perfecting the nuances of ghazal singing under the guidance of Padma Shri Shanti Hiranand. She will sing bhakti and sufi songs at her programme this fortnight, a performance that will be followed by a sitar recital by Sudeep Rai, a disciple of Pt Debu Chaudhuri. 7pm. India Habitat Centre, Lodhi Road (24682222).
Pushkin’s Last Poem
Bhaskar Ghosh and Achala Moulik’s production of ‘Pushkin’s Last Poem’ celebrates not only the 170th anniversary of the famous poet’s death, but also 60 years of Indo-Russian friendship. It tells the story of Pushkin’s short but full and tormented life in snippets, telling the tales of his several tragic affairs, and unconventional politics. Ultimately, the play arrives at why Pushkin is now known as the most celebrated poet of Russia, and why it is still important to remember his work. 7pm. Kamani Auditorium, 1, Copernicus Marg (23388084). Tickets: Rs50-300, available at the venue.
Almost Twelfth Night
Based on Shakespeare’s immortal comedy about twin siblings separated in a sea storm and reunited after many adventures. There’s cross-dressing and love triangles in this story told with small rod puppets and features puppeteers as storytellers. 6pm. India Habitat Centre, Lodhi Road (24682222). Tickets: Rs10-50, available at the venue.
Mashaal and Mushaira
A torchlight procession on the occasion of Mirza Ghalib’s 210th birth anniversary. People are to invited to congregate towards sunset at Ghanta Ghar in Chandni Chowk before heading towards the haveli where Mirza Ghalib is said to have lived. At the haveli, there will be poetry reading and participants are welcome to say a few words about Ghalib. Later in the evening, there will be a ‘mushaira’ at Ghalib’s mazhar at Nizamuddin. 5.30pm. Assemble at Ghanta Ghar, Chandni Chowk. Contact: Uma Sharma at the Ghalib Memorial Movement (26432998) for details.
Bhuvanesh Gowda sculpts the human body using wood. “The works combine things from my life, my love for travelling and my work,” said Gowda. “I was born in a village near Mangalore, then I went to Mysore to study, then to Lucknow for six months, then to New Delhi and now I’m in Pune. All this culminates to make these sculptures. The homesick vagabond is me.” 10.30am-8pm (Mon-Sat ), 4-8pm (Sun). Birla Academy of Art and Culture, Century Bhavan, Dr Annie Besant Road, Worli (24320316).
Taare Zameen Par
Like all children of his age, eight-year-old Ishaan (Darsheel Safary) is a dream who tests the patience of his parents. He is sent off to boarding school, where his art teacher Ram (Aamir Khan) helps him discover his talent for painting. The movie was supposed to have been painter Amole Gupte’s feature debut, but Khan took over the project after differences between the two. Gupte is now credited as the movie’s writer and creative director, while Khan finally gets to officially direct a movie. In major theatres.
At last, a Marathi play that’s not a middle-class catharsis erupting in a drawing room. Instead, director Mohit Takalkar, whose previous work includes such absurdist outings as ‘Fridgemadhe Thevalele Prem’, goes spiritual. In the middle of torrid lovemaking, a man and woman are hit with the realization that their lives are incomplete. Anxious to find inner meaning, each sets out separate quests. Inspired by the poetry of Sufi mystic Maulana Jalaluddin Rumi, writer Satee Bhave inventively entwines narrative with the poet’s verses, which are spoken conversationally. Competent performances ensure that the play doesn’t degenerate into Astha Channel-esque pseudo-spiritual pulp. But what really pins you in your seat is Takalkar’s spare yet warm aesthetic. Actors are kitted out in vaguely mid-eastern costumes whose earthy hues when combined with Pradeep Vaidya’s austere use of light and some deeply resonant Sufi music make for intensely atmospheric viewing. 4pm & 7pm (duration: 2 hours). Experimental Theatre, NCPA. Tickets: Rs100.
World Press Photo Exhibition
23 December-12 January
The best press photos in the world, as determined annually by World Press Photo, a 52-year-old, Netherlands-based non-profit organization, will be on display. Categories include arts, sport, news and general photography. 10am-7pm (Mon-Sat). Express Towers, Ground Floor lobby, Nariman Point (22022627).
Swami Haridas Sangeet Sammelan
Musicians of the stature of Kesarbai Kerkar, Omkarnath Thakur, Krishnarao Pandit, Bade Ghulam Ali Khan and Amir Khan have performed at the festival while living legends such as Pt Jasraj and Pt Shivkumar Sharma got their big break when they were given a slot of the event in the 1960s. Even today, artistes from the city and across the country consider it a privilege to perform at the Swami Haridas Sangeet Sammelan, now into its sixth decade. Almost 50 singers and instrumentalists will take the stage during the 10-day festival this year, which will feature five days of classical music and five days of classical dance. 6pm. Vidyapith Vidyarthi Bhavan (fourth floor), B Road, Churchgate.
Electronica-soul from the duo who like to call their stuff “lovebeat”. 9.30pm. Blue Frog, Mathuradas Mills Compound, Tulsi Pipe Road, Lower Parel (40332300).
Shanti Sharma+Shujaat Hussain Khan+R.K. Srikantan+R.K. Ramakant
Hindustani vocalist Sharma, sitar player Khan and Carnatic vocalists Srikantan and Ramakant play on the first day of the Morning Raga Festival—a three-day programme that features a wide spectrum of artistes from both the Hindustani and the Carnatic classical traditions. 10am. Lawns, Indira Gandhi National Centre for the Arts, 1, CV Mess, Janpath.