Boy Dancer—Convergence and Continuum
Until 22 May
The question of how to depict performance art is one that Oriya artist Birendra Pani has engaged with for some time. At a previous show at Gallery Espace, he included several images from his Dasavatara Portrait of the Gotipua Boy series. In this show, he continues to explore the representation of this traditional Oriya dance on canvases that are a mix of serigraph, montage, calendar kitsch and portraiture. Gotipua dance was traditionally performed in the Puri district by young boys up to the age of 18; they were trained from childhood to perform as women at religious gatherings. A difficult dance form that required contortion that only young limbs are capable of, Gotipua was the foundation for modern Odissi and includes folk and tribal elements. The tradition of Gotipua almost vanished during the 20th century, but is experiencing a small revival through a handful of gurus. 11am-7pm (Mon-Sat). Gallery Espace, 16, Community Centre, New Friends Colony (2632-6267).
Solo Show: Vasudha Thozhur
Until 28 May
Vasudha Thozhur has always been interested in collating disparate elements in her work. She paints panels that draw together current events, memory, observations and symbols to create combinations that are sometimes startling and always intriguing. It is appropriate that this exhibition brings together separate, but often connected, series from Thozhur’s work over the last six years. The exhibition consists of large paintings, scrolls and a series of small paintings and photographs. 11am-7pm (Mon-Sat). Vadehra Art Gallery, D-178, Phase I, Okhla (6547-4005).
Based on a 1937 novel, this well-acted Abhiyan production relates the struggles of the protagonist, Mrinal, to build an honest foundation for her marriage within the constraints of traditional Indian society, her disillusionment and final break with middle-class morality. Narrated in flashback by Mrinal’s nephew Pramod, Tyagpatra’s candour holds some surprises. 6.30pm (duration: 1 hour 30 mins). Shri Ram Centre for Performing Arts, 4, Safdar Hashmi Marg (2371-4307). For passes, call Jagdish Chandra Sharma (23690274).
Nataraj—Lord of Dance
Sadhya, a contemporary performing arts academy, presents a multiform dance presentation on the various manifestations of the god Shiva. The highlight of the production is in the second segment, where 11 dancers from five different dance forms—Bharatanatyam, Odissi, Mohiniattam, Chhau and Kathak—take the stage and perform to the same piece of music. Choreographed by Santosh Nair, with music by Sharat Chandra Srivastava and Upmanyu Bhanot, this is part of the HCL Concert Series. 7pm. India Habitat Centre, Lodhi Road (2468-2001).
An impressively tough, raw realist drama, set in and around the drabber areas of Liège in Belgium. A 15-year-old boy, Igor, comes into conflict with his single parent father after a tragedy forces him to confront the moral implications of their exploitative business in smuggling and housing illegal immigrants. Having made a promise to a dying African that he’ll look after his wife and child, young Igor is torn between filial duty and growing affection for his impoverished “charges”, between fear of his dad’s bouts of drunken violence and his desire to keep his word. 6.30pm (duration: 1 hour 33 mins). Grey Zone Film Club, The Attic, 36, Regal Building, Connaught Place, on Parliament Street (2374-6050). Metro: Rajiv Chowk. One-day membership: Rs70.
Habitat Film Festival
The festival includes a selection of critically acclaimed films from across India, showcasing the dynamic and changing face of contemporary Indian cinema of the past year. Look out for a retrospective of Girish Kasaravalli’s films. Showing this week at the festival: Note Book by Roshan Andrews (21 May, 7pm), Nayi Neralu by Kasaravalli and Aideu by Arup Manna (22 May, 6.30pm & 9pm), Aadum Koothu by T.V. Chandran and Mane by Kasaravalli (23 May, 6.30pm & 8.30pm) and Atheetham by Devan Nair and Hope by K. Satish (24 May, 6.30pm & 8.30pm). India Habitat Centre, Lodhi Road (4122-0000).
The Yogis—Great Masters: Sant Tukaram
This two-day event on 17th century Marathi poet-saint Sant Tukaram starts with the singing of abhangs (a form of Marathi devotional music) followed by the screening of Sant Tukaram, the landmark 1936 film on the saint. The second day of the event features poet Dilip Chitre, who will present English translations of poems by Sant Tukaram. 6pm. Auditorium, India International Centre, 40, Max Mueller Marg, Lodhi Estate (2461-9431).
Until 31 May
Giorgio de Chirico, one of the pillars of surrealist art, painted some of his most outstanding work using the archways and piazzas of Turin. Santosh More is no Chirico but his paintings in Private Spaces share a similar fascination for architecture. Like Chirico, More paints empty urban spaces with a surrealist twist so that they become oddly fantastic and yet remain recognizable as urban structures. The urban as inspiration is quite a departure from More’s earlier, nature-inspired works. “I live between two realities, between the village I come from and Mumbai, where I work now,” said More. He has few compliments for the city. “Progress here, such as these malls and everything, it looks chaka-chakbut the city has no soul,” he complained. However, as hostile as More may profess to be towards the city, it has inspired more powerful paintings than nature did. 11am-7pm (Mon-Sat ). Gallery Articullate, Yantra Annexe, Queens Mansion, Ghanshyam Talwatkar Marg, near Cathedral School, Fort (2200-0061).
Jaata Nahi Jaat
The play unfolds in a hostel housing seven college lecturers who’re more interested in vociferously making the case for their own beliefs than engaging in fruitful dialogue. Belonging to different castes and cultural backgrounds and committed to conflicting political ideologies, these teachers have little in common. Each professor sounds like a party spokesperson. The Maratha is always heating up their arguments with controversial remarks. The Marxist tries to rationalize the situation. The Jai Bhim-shouting Ambedkar follower is unable to defend his position when pushed beyond a point. Except for a late-night liquor binge that silences their differences, they’re always at loggerheads. 7.30pm. Mumbai Marathi Sahitya Sangh, Dr Bhalerao Marg, near Railway Station, Charni Road (2385-6303). Tickets: Rs30.
Durga Zali Gauri
Catch Awishkar’s classic children’s play before its adolescent cast breaks for summer. A spoilt princess wants her parents to punish the servants for no fault of their own. When her parents refuse, she leaves the palace in anger. After crossing the river to another village, she finds she cannot sleep until she learns what it’s like to work hard. 11am. Yashwantrao Chavan Natya Sankul, near Star City, Matunga (2437-7649). Tickets: Rs50.
Kumar Mardur + Ronu Majumdar
When the Indian Music Group of St Xavier’s College hosted a concert featuring singers of the Kirana gharana in September 2006, some Hindustani classical fans were surprised to find the name of a relatively unknown singer from Dharwad in a line-up that included such well-known vocalists as Sandipan Samajpati and Jaiteerth Mevundi. But, Kumar Mardur erased all doubts about his credentials as he enraptured the audience with his renditions of ragas Madhuvanti and Shudh Kalyan. Mardur, who recently moved to Pune, is fast emerging as the new voice of the Kirana gharana, which was popularized by the legendary Bhimsen Joshi. Mardur will be accompanied by acclaimed flautist Ronu Majumdar. 10am. Karnataka Sangha, Dr Vishveshawarayya Samarak Mandir, CHM Marg, Matunga (W) (2437-7022). Free.
With Nick Warren’s visit this fortnight, Mumbai checks off another name on the list of superstar DJs to have played in the city. The progressive house DJ is spoken of in the same breath as John Digweed, Paul Oakenfold and Sasha. Warren is best known as one-half of electronic duo Way Out West and for the series of compilations he’s mixed for dance music label Global Underground (GU). From 1997’s Prague to 2007’s Paris, he has been behind seven of the 32 GU city-centric albums. The albums are based on gigs in the city they are named after but they aren’t recorded at the venue. Instead, they’re mixed by the DJs in a studio back home using their live experience as inspiration. 9.30pm-1.30am (Tue-Sun). Poison, Krystal, 206, Waterfield Road, Bandra (W) (2642-3006).
Rare books exhibition
Until 31 May
In 1450, Johannes Gutenberg, a German goldsmith, invented a movable-type wooden printing press in Strasbourg, Germany. While his invention didn’t bring Gutenberg the expected windfall—instead, he faced bankruptcy and exile—it became a major factor in the rise of Protestantism and Renaissance in Europe. Nearly 80 lakh books were printed by the end of the 15th century. The 203-year-old Asiatic Society of Mumbai is currently holding an exhibition of 15 rare antique books from its collection to chart the early history of printing.
The oldest book on display is Greek Grammar by Constantine Lascares, printed in 1495 by Aldus Manutius, an influential European printer credited with introducing italics to printing. The other books, from the 16th and 17th centuries, cover a range of subjects, including astronomy, literature, rhetoric and city planning. 10.30am-5.30pm. Asiatic Society of Mumbai, Shahid Bhagat Singh Marg, near Reserve Bank of India, Fort (2035-5106).
Legends of India
Since the inception of its annual sangeet sammelan in 1999, Legends of India has hosted a galaxy of stars, including Pandit Jasraj, Bhimsen Joshi, Hariprasad Chaurasia, Shiv Kumar Sharma, Girija Devi, Rajan and Sajan Mishra and Parveen Sultana. This year’s three-day festival kicks off with a vocal recital by Kishori Amonkar. Regarded by most as the day’s greatest female classical vocalist, Amonkar has been universally lauded for her khayal singing. Amonkar’s recital comes after a concert by sarod maestro Buddhadev Dasgupta, a leading exponent of the Seniya Shahjahanpur gharana. Day 2 features a recital by dhrupad maestros Umakant and Ramakant Gundecha and a fusion offering by flautist Ronu Majumdar, percussionist Taufiq Qureshi, tabla player Bikram Ghosh and keyboardist Atul Raninga titled Vibrations. The coup of the festival and a rare treat for enthusiasts in the Capital will be an evening, on the last day of the festival, with ghazal singer Farida Khanum. Lahore-based Khanum performs solely at select baithaks nowadays. Her performance comes after a sitar and cello classical fusion recital by husband-wife duo Shubhendra Rao and Saskia Rao-de Haas. 6.30pm. Kamani Auditorium, 1, Copernicus Marg, Mandi House (2338-8084). For invites, contact Krishna Bhadra, secretary, Legends of India (2627-0629).
Satyajit Ray films
18 May onwards
Satyajit Ray is back to teach the young’uns a thing or two about film-making. Sony Pictures is releasing three Ray movies this fortnight as a package called ‘Salaam Satyajit’. Goopy Gyne Bagha Byne, Aranyer Din Ratri and Pratidwandi will open on 18 May at Inox, Nariman Point, and Fame Adlabs in Andheri. The films have no subtitles. The movies will run as long as there is public demand. Call Inox (6658-8888) and Fame Adlabs (6699-1212) for show timings.