Mumbai Diary: Sunday Dossier
The city - sliced, diced and served with a dash of sauce
Choona na, choona na
Sara Ali Khan and a friend try and dodge the paparazzi that had gathered outside a Juhu theatre, which was screening her father, Saif Ali Khan's Tanhaji. Pic/Satej Shinde
Arts of Hindostan shows at Bonhams
Fans of art would have heard of the Instagram handle @artsofhindostan, which for the last few years has been curating visual and decorative arts, architecture, design and fashion inspired by the Mughals, Rajputs and Company Sahibs. Even as we speak, Arts of Hindostan is displaying its private collection at Bonhams on New Bond Street, London. The exhibition titled, In Good Company, will be on display till January 17, and features 79 images, including 'Diwan-i-Khas in The Red Fort, Delhi', attributed to Ghulam Ali Khan (circa 1825-1830) that was once owned by Jacqueline Kennedy. "In the 16th and 17th centuries, Mughal Emperors Humayun and Akbar encouraged Persian artists to their ateliers. With visits from the European Jesuits to Akbar's court came European prints, which Indian artists started to assimilate into their repertoire. By the mid to late 18th century, the decline of the Mughals and their vassals had commenced. This meant less patronage from their erstwhile Mughal patrons. Many artists flocked to new patrons—East India Company officials. The visits of European artists provided further influences for Indian artists, including the use of perspective, the move from gouache to watercolour, and the use of softer palettes. All of these are represented in the exhibition," says the anonymous founder.
After a successful launch in London in September 2019, Alicja Dobrucka's emotive photographic series, I Like You, I Like You A Lot, has been unveiled in Mumbai. The project began in 2008, when the Polish photographer was called home from London after her younger brother tragically drowned. "We were all in deep shock. When I went to identify his body, my father asked me to take a picture of it. Later, I began documenting my family's grief." Dobrucka felt it was important to start a conversation around death. "My book launch in Mumbai, a city that is second home to me, aims to start that discussion," she says.
The beauty and her voice
Actor Meher Mistry, whom we loved as Lovelin in Motley's The Truth, where she matches acting chops with Naseeruddin Shah, recently showed up on our Instagram feed, singing. She put up a cover of Fleetwood Mac's Landslide with another talented singer, Delraaz Bunshah, and it's absolutely sublime. Mistry's voice is soulful, and it's no wonder that she started her career with a production of the Sound Of Music in 2011 (where Bunshah had played Liesl to Mistry's Maria), and then was the belle of the ball in 2016 as Beauty in Disney's Beauty and the Beast. "Singing gives me pure joy. I've always found that singing a song you love frees your spirit and is such a truthful way of communicating how I feel. I would love to do more covers, especially with Delraaz, whose voice I love," Mistry told this diarist. The last play she did was Sounding Vanya, which was based on Chekov's Uncle Vanya. "Next up is a project called Readings in the Shed."
When Worli's Hard Rock Café, and its neighbouring establishment Shiro, downed shutters in 2018, the city mourned the loss of their beloved hangouts. According to reports, there were legal issues regarding the property. Two years on, Shiro is set to get a fresh lease of life. Hitesh Keswani, restaurateur and founder of Silver Beach Entertainment and Hospitality Pvt Ltd, is turning it into a Greek restaurant. "There's not a single restaurant in Mumbai that serves authentic Greek cuisine. I'll be bringing an international brand. We aim to open by the first week of April," he adds.
Amol Muzumdar is booked
The 2019-20 cricket season is proving to be a significant one for Mumbai cricket hero Amol Muzumdar. Not with his run-heavy bat, which he said goodbye to in 2013, but beyond the 22-yard strip. Last September, he was appointed South Africa's batting coach for their tour of India and though the Proteas didn't seem to implement his teachings, save the first innings of the Vizag Test where they plundered 431, Muzumdar surely dished out some gems. The South Africans were no match for Virat Kohli's outfit and lost 0-3, but they'll be well served to pick Muzumdar's brains in future.
Meanwhile, we hear that he is working on his autobiography in collaboration with sports journalist Malay Desai.
His literary agent The Book Bakers, said on Facebook that the tentative title is Next Man In and it will be a "no holds barred autobiography".
Why Next Man In, we wonder. Is it because he was padded up for session after session at the Sassanian CC tent in Azad Maidan while his Shardashram Vidyamandir colleagues Sachin Tendulkar and Vinod Kambli piled up a record 664-run partnership against St Xavier's School in 1988, a feat which made it to the 1990 edition of the Guinness Book of World Records? Maybe, but he can also be Indian cricket's next man in when it comes to autobiographies, since a little birdie tells us it could hit the stands as early as April.
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