Mumbai: Park in Bandra to host live music on the weekend
Head to a park in Bandra for a musical surprise
Patwardhan Park in Bandra is where you should be this Saturday, not for a walk, not for a run, and not to simply relax outdoors — but for live music. Allow us to let you in on a little secret. This music will hit visitors there out of the blue. It will start with just one person singing. Then another person will join, followed by another, and another, till it turns into a full-blown choir. The set-list will be a mix of carols and pop songs. And it will be conducted by Tristan Knelange, a Dutch conductor now based in Mumbai.
But what's the purpose of it all, you might ask. So here's the thing. A couple of months ago, Anca Florescu Abraham — a Romanian architect based in the city — and Tina Nandi Stephens, a photographer, were fed up with absurd restrictions imposed in BMC and privately run parks. They decided to take matters into their hands and started an initiative called Love Your Parks Mumbai (LYPM), as reported in these pages first. The intention is simple — rethink the way we approach open public spaces. Why should children be kept off the grass? Why aren't balls allowed inside some gardens? These are some of the questions that LYPM is raising. And the flash choir slated for this weekend is part of the modus operandi to seek the answers.
When we had visited their rehearsal space last month, we found a community-driven initiative. Knelange was teaching around a dozen volunteers some vocal exercises. "The group has a diverse level of experience, and the fun thing about such community projects is that all noses have to point in the same direction. So, what I tried to do is open up everyone's voice, because singing can be a bit unnerving. It can make you feel vulnerable. That's why in the beginning I wanted them to feel the enjoyment of a song and listening to each other," he says, adding that some initial volunteers who had to leave sent others in their place, meaning that the numbers only grew with time. How many people are part of the choir now, though? Well, head to the park and find out, because where's the fun if we reveal everything, right?
On December 8, 4.30 pm
At Patwardhan Park, Linking Road, Bandra West.
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