Around town


17 August

The brainchild of designer, visual artiste and VJ Avinash Kumar and DJ, producer and founding member of Qilla Records, Gaurav Malaker, Blot! arrived five years ago, pioneering the audio-visual concept in Delhi. Funk-minimal-techno music, videos, stop-motion animation and 3D visuals, and an understanding of light and space have given Blot! a niche distinct from most other EDM (electronic dance music) acts in the country. They have played at some of the biggest festivals in India, Germany, the UK and US. They even organize their own music festival: TechnoDrome—the electronic music and urban arts festival started by Blot! and Qilla Records in 2009. Perhaps long overdue, their debut album Snafu (an acronym for “Situation Normal: All Fucked Up"), with collaborations with Vasundhara Vidalur (of Adil and Vasundhara) and Suryakant Sawhney (of Peter Cat Recording Co.), will be released at Chéri.

9pm. Chéri One Qutub, 1501, Kalka Dass Marg, Mehrauli (26645369). Cover charge, 500.

photo Music

Madonna Tribute by Melissa Totten

19 August

In 1991, the Chicago Tribune reported a flurry of Madonna sightings when the diva was in town filming A League of Their Own. The next day people realized that the sightings were actually of a 22-year-old woman named Melissa Totten. This doppelganger incident sparked Totten’s 20-year career of paying tribute to the “queen of pop". Totten is definitely the most well-known Madonna tribute artiste. With make-up and costumes, she does look uncannily like the pop star. And unlike many lookalikes, Totten sings “100% live". Totten will perform at The Westin, Gurgaon.

7.30pm. Ballroom, The Westin, 1, MG Road, Sector 29, Gurgaon. For invites, call 0124-4977777.

Ditty & Mark

22 August

It’s not every day that you see a female trumpet player and a ponytailed guitarist performing together. If you’re in Delhi, the search narrows down to one duo, Ditty & Mark. The artistes combine jazz, R&B, Greek, Balkan and Latin music into one neat package. Aditi Veena (Ditty) and Mark Aranha started playing together last year after they attended the Swarnabhoomi Academy of Music in Puducherry, run by ace fusion guitarist Prasanna.

10pm. blueFROG, The Kila, Seven Style Mile, Kalka Dass Marg, Mehrauli (30800300). Entry, 300.

Sanjeev and Ashwani Shankar + Sahitya Nahar

22-23 August

The Kashi Baithak Sangeet Sabha is organizing a two-day tribute to Pandit Vishnu Prasanna. On Wednesday, Sanjeev and Ashwani Shankar will perform on the shehnai, followed by a sitar recital by Pandit Sahitya Nahar. Shehnai is part of the lineage of Sanjeev and Ashwani, and they have been carrying forward the playing styles of their grandfather, Pandit Anant Lal, and their father, Pandit Daya Shankar, both legendary shehnai maestros. Rajesh, Rishab and Ritesh Prasanna will play the flute and vocalist Uma Garg will perform on Thursday.

7pm. Habitat World, India Habitat Centre, Lodhi Road (43663095). Seating is on first-come, first-served basis.


Between the Lines: Identity, Place and Power

Till 22 August

A group exhibition of 128 fine art prints by 75 artists, including Anupam Sud, Bhupen Khakhar, Chittaprasad Bhattacharya, Jyoti Bhatt, Krishna Reddy and Zarina Hashmi. The prints are from the private collection of photographer Waswo X. Waswo, and have been selected and curated by art historian Lina Vincent Sunish. The exhibition is scheduled to travel to the National Gallery of Modern Art, Bangalore, in October.

10am-7pm. Visual Arts Gallery, India Habitat Centre, Lodhi Road (43662024).

Top Pick


Piya Behroopiya

20-23 August

Directed by Atul Kumar and performed by The Company Theatre, this Indianized version of Shakespeare’s ‘Twelfth Night’ was performed at London’s Globe Theatre in April as part of Globe to Globe (21 April-9 June), a festival within the World Shakespeare Festival 2012. This is its first performance in the Capital. Kumar’s production is mostly faithful to the original, right from Orsino’s famous opening line, “If music be the food of love, play on." Central to ‘Piya Behroopiya’s’ charm is Amod Bhatt’s folksy music and many hummable tunes—keep your ears open for ‘Gori Tere Naina Re’ and the ‘qawwali’ number. Using colourful costumes to offset the bare backdrop and minimal props, Kumar brings alive the madcap world of Illyria by deftly employing the ensemble’s many talents. 2 hours.

7.30pm. Kamani Auditorium, Copernicus Marg, Mandi House (43503351). Tickets, 200, 300 and 500, available at,, and at the venue on the day of the show.




Latin and ballroom boot camp

22-26 August

Priti Gupta and Shannon Benjamin, the ballroom duo behind the institute DanceSport India, have invited international trainer Kevin Nugara to share his expertise in such dance forms as salsa, samba, paso doble, cha cha, jive, rumba and Viennese waltz.

7.30pm. Birla Kreeda Kendra, near the Hindu Mafatlal Swimming Pool, Purendra Marg, Girgaon-Chowpatty, Charni Road. On Sunday, at the Yacht Club, Colaba. Fees, 3,000 for one dance, 4,500 for two dances and 6,000 for three dances. For details, call 9920053329, email or visit

Around town

Mera Mumbai: ‘Walkable City’ or ‘Car Centric City’?

17 August

A panel of architects and urban planners—including Ashok Datar, chairman, Mumbai Environmental Social Network, Geeta Mehta, associate professor, Columbia University, New York City, US, and Madhav Pai, director, Embarq India, a centre for sustainable transport—will discuss the challenges faced by pedestrians in Mumbai as well as the consequences of creating a car-centric city, examining current policies and infrastructure investments.

6-8pm. Studio X, Kitab Mahal, Fourth floor, 192, Dadabhai Naoroji Road, Fort (67691100). Registration is mandatory. To register, visit

photo History of India: VIRitten

18 August

Ashvin Gidwani brings his new production featuring stand-up comic and actor Vir Das, who abandons his smart-aleck demeanour for something more crowd-friendly: the urban, middle-class version of patriotism in which it’s easy to love your country because you only see the bright side. The delivery is clean, quick and sharp as he goes on about the cradle of civilization in Harappa, to the Vedas, from the East India Company to the 1947 freedom struggle, to the Indian economy opening up to the world in the 1990s.

7.30pm. Sophia Bhabha Hall, Sophia College, Bhulabhai Desai Road. Tickets, 500, 750, 1,000 and 1,500, available on

Superheroes theme party

19 August

The Dur Se Brothers collective, made up of theatre professionals, costume designers and stylists, is organizing a party with a superhero theme. Performances with the actors dressed in popular superhero costumes, spoof songs, dances and fight sequences are on the roster.

6pm. Cool Chef Café, Thadani House, 329/A , Worli Village, opposite Indian Coast Guard, Worli Sea Face. Entry, 300 for guests dressed as superheroes and 400 with a pint of beer.

Top Pick


Andha Yug—A Fusion

23-24 August

The 1954 classic ‘Andha Yug’ evoked the bloodbath of Partition. It took place on the last day of the Mahabharat war, when the survivors of the defeated Kaurava clan encourage Ashwatthama, the son of their guru, to release the ultimate weapon, the ‘brahmastra’. Bijon Mondal’s new production, ‘Andha Yug—A Fusion’, retains the script’s poetic language and narrative structure, but is tweaked to appeal to youngsters. Fusion band Translucent performs a blend of Carnatic and Hindustani music as the epic unfolds on stage. Women are cast in the role of the prophetic narrator Sanjay and adviser Vidur. Krishna is represented as a six-person chorus that sings the narrative between scenes, though not always in tune. 2 hours.

6pm/9pm. Prithvi Theatre, 20 Janki Kutir, Juhu Church Road. Tickets, 200, available on





Till 22 September

Hereinafter is a solo show by Bangalore-based photographer Anup Mathew Thomas. Thomas works “to engage with narratives that are inherent within the context of his site of work; the stories, though instinctively local, often reverberate within a more inclusive context", says the curatorial note. Many of the works on show draw from the cultural history of Kerala—such as photographs of Katha Prasangam performances (a form of funeral procession) and a Nazi 35mm movie camera rumoured to have been used by a priest in Kerala to film prayers.

11am-7pm (Tuesdays closed, Sundays by appointment). GallerySKE, 2, Berlie Street, Langford Town (65951972/41120873). For details, visit

photo Music

Poets of the Fall

22 August

VH1 will bring to India the band Poets of the Fall, which is on a world tour. The Finnish rockers comprise Marko Saaresto on vocals, Olli Tukiainen on guitar, Markus Kaarlonen on keys, Jani Snellman on bass, Jaska Mäkinen on guitar and vocals and Jari Salminen on drums and percussion. Their music is a blend of pop, rock, metal and industrial sounds.

8pm. Hard Rock Café, 40, St Mark’s Road (41242222). Tickets, 1,500 and 2,500 (VIP), available on

Around town

Biryani and Beer Fest@Kahwa

Till 31 August

A beer and biryani festival is on at the restaurant Kahwa at The Zuri Whitefield hotel. The buffet spread includes a vegetarian and chicken biryani, along with a variety of dals, curries, salads and saalans, and beer.

10.30pm-midnight. Kahwa, The Zuri Whitefield, 244, Hoody Village, Rajapalya, ITPL Road, Whitefield (66657272). Buffet price, 550 with a mug of beer.


A Walk in the Woods

17 August

Directed by Ratna Pathak Shah, the play originally written by Lee Blessing and adapted by Faisal Rashid and Randeep Hooda will star Naseeruddin Shah and Rajit Kapoor as two diplomats (an Indian and a Pakistani) taking a private walk, trying to achieve a breakthrough in the muddled negotiations between the two countries. Will they succeed? What role do individuals play in the larger games governments set in motion? This production is being hosted by the Bangalore-based not-for-profit organization India Foundation for the Arts. 2 hours.

7.30pm. Chowdiah Memorial Hall, 16th Cross, GD Park Extension, Vyalikaval (23445810). Tickets, 250 300, 500, 1,000, 2,000 and 3,000, available on and

Top Pick


The Snow Queen

21-22 August

This Indian adaptation of the Hans Christian Andersen fairy tale, ‘The Snow Queen’, by playwright Anupama Chandrasekhar will take viewers on a trip across Kerala, the Chambal region, Kashmir and Mumbai’s film industry and look at themes of loss, love, loyalty and friendship in the context of what it means to be a teenager today. 2 hours.

7.30pm. Ranga Shankara, 36/2, 8th Cross, JP Nagar, 2nd Phase (26592777). Tickets, 250, available on and



photo Art


Till 25 August

Tejas Gallery and the art group Connoisseurs are presenting an exhibition of 18th and 19th century prints with a European theme from a private collection dating back to the British Raj. The prints comprise lithographs, etchings and engravings. Lithography is a method for printing using a stone or metal plate with a smooth surface, invented in 1796 by German author and actor Alois Senefelder. Etching is the process of using acid or mordant to cut into the unprotected parts of a metal surface to create a design in intaglio in the metal. Engraving is the practice of incising a design on a hard, usually flat surface by cutting grooves into it.

12.30-7.30pm (closed on Sundays and national holidays). Tejas Gallery, 11, Mayfair Road, opposite the Ice Skating Rink. For details, call 9830049825.


Tasher Desh (The Land of Cards)

18-19 August

Theatre group Shohan will stage its new production, Rabindranath Tagore’s Tasher Desh, directed by Anish Ghosh. Tasher Desh is one of Tagore’s more famous dance operas, and it has been staged by many theatre groups. The story revolves around a prince who goes in search of adventure, accompanied by a merchant. The mismatched pair gets shipwrecked in the “Land of Cards".

7pm. 18 August at Girish Mancha, Bagbazar, and 19 August at Madhusudan Mancha, Dhakuria. Tickets 30, 40, 50 and 60, available at the venues. For details, call 9830042004.


22 Srabon

18-19 August

Saregama India Ltd and Utsaha-Udbhas will present a two-day performance by Rabindrasangeet exponent Rahul Mitra to mark Baishe Srabon (the 22nd day of the Bengali month Srabon, the day on which Rabindranath Tagore died). On 18 August, Rahul Mitra will perform Tagore’s Baul songs with Soumen Baul. The next day, Mitra will presents Dorodiya—an evening of kirtan songs with Parveen Sultana.

6pm. GD Birla Sabhagar, 29, Ashutosh Chowdhury Avenue. Entry by invites. For details, call 9830105433 and for invites, 9748350320.



Till 23 August

The Seagull Foundation is presenting an exhibition of works by young photographers from Kolkata. These include Abhijit Nandi, Anindya Chakraborty, Debasish Aich, Ronny Sen, Salil Bera, Shankar Sarkar, Soham Gupta, Soumyadip Ghosh and Simon Biswas.

11am-8pm. The Seagull Foundation for the Arts, 36C, SP Mukherjee Road (24556942/43).

Top Pick


Purba Paschim Theatre Festival 2O12

22-30 August

Theatre group Purba Paschim presents its annual theatre festival with plays by different groups and an exhibition which will pay centenary tribute to singer Jyotirindra Moitra. Purba Paschim will stage their new production ‘Bhalomanush’ on 23 and 24 August. The play is based on a play by Bertolt Brecht and has been adapted by Ajitesh Bandopadhyay. The Ahmedabad group Darpan will present ‘With Love’, scripted and directed by Mallika Sarabhai and Stever Maye Miller. Other plays include Manoj Mitra’s ‘Debi Sarpamasta’, and Shakespeare’s ‘A Midsummer Night’s Dream’ by the Mizoram government’s art and culture department.

Timings and venues vary. For details, visit or or call 9830783356/9330858293. Tickets, 40, and 100, available at the venues.

By Indranil Bhoumik




The Light Touch

Till 30 August

photoUsha Devi’s paintings make use of traditional themes related to Indian architecture and landscapes, presenting them in a different perspective with a clever play on light.

11am–7pm. Vinnyasa Premier Art Gallery, 21/11, 1st Main Road, CIT Colony, Mylapore (32533655).

Around town

Onam Festival

Till 19 August

DakshinaChitra is celebrating Onam with the village traditions of Kerala’s folk dances, presented by the Kerala-based Folkland troupe. Thiruvathirai Kali is a popular dance performed by women on Thiruvathira, a festival dedicated to the Hindu god Shiva. Oppana is traditionally performed by girls in the Muslim community for a bride on the eve of her wedding. Margam Kali is performed by women of the Syrian Christian community.

10am–6pm. DakshinaChitra, Muthukadu, East Coast Road (24462435).


ItsY BitsY

21/25-26/28 August

Two plays will be staged in the ItsY BitsY series—ItsY BitsY One on 21 and 26 August and ItsY BitsY Vetty on 25 and 28 August. With a varied tapestry of emotions, perspectives, situations and voices, ItsY BitsY One celebrates and pays tribute to the original source of storytelling—the self; and ItsY BitsY Vetty is a celebration of joblessness—a situation that is timeless and universal. Sweeping across all genres of writing, the ItsY BitsY series features dramatized performances created out of outstanding writing from around the world.

7.30pm. On 21/28 August at Alliance Française de Madras, No. 24, College Road, Nungambakkam, and on 25/26 August at Spaces, 1, Elliot’s Beach, Besant Nagar. For details, call 9884070796.

Top Pick

Around town

Madras Week Celebration

19-26 August

The founding day of Madras (22 August 1639) will be celebrated with heritage walks, music, poetry and food. The events include a Tree Walk by the group Nizhal (19 August) at Queen Mary’s College; talks on “Tennis in Madras" (20 August) at The Hyatt and the “Changing face of Chennai’s dance scene" (22 August) at The Park.

Timings, venues and fees vary. Registration is mandatory. For details, visit

By Nandini Reddy



Around town

Bangla Bhoj

Till 19 August

photoTaj Banjara is hosting a Bengali food festival at its coffee shop Waterside Café. The menu includes vegetarian dishes such as shukto, alu potoler dalna and ghugni and non-vegetarian dishes like maacher jhol, ilish maacher paturi and chingri malai curry.

7.30-11.30pm. Waterside Café, Taj Banjara, Road No.1, Banjara Hills (66769999). Buffet price,Rs 850 plus taxes, per person. The meal includes unlimited beer and soft drinks.


Peau d’Ane

17 August

When the queen dies, the king decides to marry his daughter. In Jacques Demy’s French musical, Peau d’Ane (Donkey Skin), the princess is willing, but the Lily Fairy is intent on thwarting incest. She plots the princess’ escape in the skin of the king’s prized donkey.

6.30pm. Alliance Française auditorium, Aurora Colony, Road No. 3, Banjara Hills (23554485/86).

Top Pick


My Wife’s Husband

19 August

It’s not every day that you see a man and his wife’s husband come together on stage. To find out who gets to keep the wife and who ends up being the miserable, lonely one, watch this Hindi play by the group Sifar.

7.30pm. Lamakaan, off Road No. 1, Banjara Hills. Tickets, 100, available on For details, call 9642731329.

By Yogendra Kalavalapalli

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