Global fuses with local at Mehrangarh fort

Lose yourself to the sacred sounds from across the globe with the imposing Mehrangarh fort above Jodhpur's scenic skyline as the backdrop at the eight edition of the World Sacred Spirit Festival (WSSF) this weekend

It's that time of the year when Fort Mehrangarh in Jodhpur comes alive once again with sounds of melodious music. For the eighth year in a row, the Mehrangarh Museum Trust will enchant the music aficionados of India with World Sacred Spirit Festival (WSSF). Commencing on February 13, the festival promises to bring together sacred traditions from the Orient, the East and Africa, in the form of of dance, music and poetry in the royal setting of a fort in Rajasthan.

Muktiyar Ali and Mathias Duplessy with Dastien Charley
Muktiyar Ali and Mathias Duplessy with Dastien Charley

“The festival was started in 2007 in Nagaur. It was a celebration of the conclusion of first phase of conservation and restoration work at the Nagaur Fort supported by the Getty Foundation, The Helen Hamlyn Trust and numerous friends of Nagaur. This work has received an Award of Excellence for Cultural Heritage Conservation from UNESCO Asia-Pacific, of which we, at the Mehrangarh Museum Trust, are extremely proud of,” says His Highness Maharaja Gaj Singh II, a patron of WSSF and Managing Trustee of the Mehrangarh Museum Trust.

Deepak and Madan in concert.
Deepak and  Madan in concert.

He adds that since Nagaur is the second most important centre of the Chistiya Sufi movement, in order to conserve and continue this Sufi tradition of Nagaur, the festival was conceptualised with the patronage of Gordon Sumner (Sting). “Today, WSSF is emerging as a fine example of confluence of different types of Sufi music that conveys the feeling of universality in the true spiritual sense,” he reminds.

What to expect?
From Indian Fusion group Midival Punditz, Druk Yul Trio from The Kingdom of Bhutan, Li Daiguo, Cello and Beatbox from China, collaboration of Mukhtiyar Ali from India and Mathias Duplessy of France, and the Iranian Nour Ensemble, the schedule will offer a variety of performances from across the globe. Watch out for a special workshop by the children of the renowned Manganiyars and the Langas folk singers of Rajasthan. While performing Folk music, they will talk about the music, various musical instruments used, as well as the history and meaning of such folk songs.

Don't miss this

February 13
>> 8 pm Distant Voices: Cherifa & Manganiyars — The voice from the Atlas Mountains joined after by the Langas and the Manganiyars. (Morocco, Rajasthan)
>> 1 pm Li Daiguo, Pipa, Cello and Beatbox (China) A contemporary Chinese celebration of nature and beauty

Mehrangarh Fort, Jodhpur
Mehrangarh Fort, Jodhpur

February 14
>> 7 pm Mandingo Ensemble with Ballaké Sissoko — The art of the KoraMali

February 15
>> 7 am Dawn Devotional music (India)

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