Mumbai: These places set the stage for music, art and theatre in 2018
These places that launched in 2018 boosted music, theatre and art
1 A new canvas in Bandra
A defunct canteen-turned -junkyard at the St Andrew's College campus in Bandra received a new lease of life in May when the space was cleared up for summer school classes on theatre, writing and philosophy. They received a good response and queries kept coming in even after school was over. "So, we thought why not create something for the long term. We merged these spaces into one large entity and that's how the St Andrew's Centre for Philosophy and Performing Arts was born," says founder Omkar Bhatkar. Envisioned as a performing arts space, the centre has had a fairly packed schedule with readings and workshops during weekdays, and plays staged over the weekend. Apart from a collaboration with Alliance Française de Bombay for translated readings and staging of French plays, the centre has hosted productions by Divya Jagdale, Gagandev Riar and Shruthi Vishwanath.
2 Get, set, jam
A mobile application by nature, HaikuJAM converted its Bandra office — a colourful cottage — to host events in June, even hosting stand-up comedy sets by big names like Rahul Subramaniam and Sumukhi Suresh. "This will remain our focus in 2019, though we will be expanding our programme with more regular and more ambitious experiences," Diana Babei, community manager, reveals.
3 Not so secret
NCPA isn't a place that you'd associate immediately with genres like rock music. The iconic cultural space in Nariman Point is known more for jazz and classical concerts. So it came as a bit of a surprise when it launched a new venue called The Secret Garden within its premises, which promised to provide indie acts in the city a platform to play their material.
4 A market for music
Let's face it — there is a paucity of venues for live music in this city. So we were only too happy when Flea Bazaar Café in Lower Parel started hosting regular gigs. The list of performers there include local acts like Madboy/Mink and outstation ones like Peter Cat Recording Co. There are some issues with the acoustics, but given how little we have in terms of music venues, we'll take it.
5 'Burbs get arty
In August this year, the Piramal Musem of Art opened a new gallery in Mulund, taking its initiative of infusing art in locales not necessarily known for it to a new territory. "Artists need space to showcase their work, but the number of non-commercial places for art in the city are limited. At the Mulund gallery, which is a space for contemporary and emerging art, artists can showcase their works and engage in critique, but not sell them," shares Ashvin Rajagopalan, director, Piramal Art Foundation. The first exhibition was a curated show of works by around 60 artists who had been a part of the foundation's residency over three years. The gallery also has an outreach team of art professionals and educators that executes grassroots engagement plans by reaching out to local art teachers and students.
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