Meet the mystic minstrel

Updated: 22 September, 2020 11:03 IST | Jovita Aranha | Mumbai

Join acclaimed Sangeet Natak Akademi awardee Parvathy Baul on a soul-stirring journey to discover the magic, spirit and philosophy behind the storytelling form, Baul

Parvathy Baul at a concert
Parvathy Baul at a concert

If your idea of storytelling involves completely losing yourself while a narrator takes you on a captivating journey that engages all your senses, then Storytelling Education and Arts India Council (SEAIC) and Artkhoj have the perfect event lined up for you.

Mystic Minstrel, an online Baul storytelling workshop with Parvathy Baul, the globally acclaimed performer, and the first female Baul recipient of Sangeet Natak Akademi (SNA) award, will help storytellers experience the magic of folk music and a performance art form.

Known as 'honey gatherers', the Bauls, with long robes, uncut coiled locks and bead necklaces, always have accompanying instruments like the ektara, duggi and the tinkling chilambu metallic anklets. They traverse across villages, singing devotional songs, dancing, and performing tales that speak of love, self-discovery and the hidden meaning of life.

Baul, who has been recognised for her technical virtuosity, mastery of vocal pitch and tone while playing multiple instruments and dancing, has performed in over 40 countries, including at prestigious venues and music festivals like the Noh Theater in Kyoto, the World Music Center in New York City, and the Festival of World Sacred Music in Fez, Morocco. Giving us an insight into the tradition, she shares, "Baul storytelling is commonly mistaken as a folk form of storytelling when actually it is not; rather it is inspired from folk forms. This form of storytelling expresses spiritual and philosophical depth in a story."

She also adds how the tradition that dates back to the early 8th century AD has grown by weaving together threads from Sahajiya Buddhism, Turkish Sufism and Bengali Hinduism. UNESCO has also recognised it as a Masterpiece of the Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity.

This particular workshop will not only introduce the participants to this form of storytelling but will also help them experience it with Baul's magical performance through poetry, song, rhythms and life lessons.

On September 26, 3 to 5 pm
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Cost Rs 600

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First Published: 22 September, 2020 10:14 IST

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