So, was your grandmom artistic?

May 10, 2011, 09:55 IST | Promita Mukherjee

Find out this and witness some more action at International Ancient Arts, a festival with a plethora of events, that starts today

Find out this and witness some more action at International Ancient Arts, a festival with a plethora of events, that starts today

"We are surrounded by art in our daily life even though we don't feel it. Think of sound, the manipulation of which makes music," says classical dancer and spiritualist Reela Hota who has come up with International Ancient Arts, a unique festival-cum-symposium that starts in the Capital from today. The festival brings together a plethora of events -- from Ramlila to classical dance performances to puppetry and folk dances -- you will be able to witness all here.



So what brought so many things together under one roof? "I wanted people to understand the importance of traditional arts in our daily lives," says Hota who has organised the event in collaboration with Indian Council for Cultural Relations (ICCR). 

You can watch a folk dance performance by a Kazakh troupe, Gaaradi, a folk dance from Puducherry and more. There is Ramlila by artists from Ayodhya and Qawwali from the Sarwana Gharana artists. The multi-arts event aims to educate while entertaining. There are lectures and discussions on various aspects of dance, music and allied arts and their relevance in urban life, followed by actual performances.

"The symposium-cum-festival aims to showcase universal unity and spiritual significance in the world' cultures through dance and music. It will also highlight how dance can help achieve a more balanced lifestyle and rounded personality in a common man's life filled with stress and strain," adds Hota.

And so it starts
Day one begins with a performance by Kazakh State Akademik Folk and Ethnographical Orchestra which works towards future development and restoration of music, folklore and traditions from Kazakhstan. There will also be a keynote address on The Importance of Arts Education by Eleanor Richards, a senior lecturer in music therapy at Anglican Ruskin University, Cambridge. The day rounds off with Kathak by Gitanjali Lal who has been trained in the Jaipur gharana and is known for her contribution to Kathak.

Hota has chosen the art forms keeping the traditional factor in mind. A discipline might not be ancient, but it has to have traditional roots, she says. Like for instance Kathak, which came to being in the 17th century but has ancient roots.  

On the second day, you will get to hear Gulab Bari, a performance that has Dr Vishnuchittan Balaji on the violin, vocalist Dr Sangeeta Pandit, accompanied by Pt Kishore Kumar Mishra at the tabla and B. Anantha Raman and Bhairavi Balaji. There is another performance --Duryodhana Vadham -- by International Kathakali Centre which does plays based on traditional and mythological stories, historical stories, European classics and Shakespeare's plays.

Ramlila by Avadh Adarsh Ramlila Mandal is the highlight of the third day. They will present the Ramlila in traditional Avadhi style replete with colourful costumes. Also for the first time in Delhi, you will get to witness a performance of Gaaradi, a folk dance from Puducherry which depicts the Vanar Sena's celebration of Rama's victory over Ravana. The day rounds off with a qawwali performance by the Qutbi Brothers. On the last day, watch Kathputli by Pran Bhatt and Group, puppeteers from Rajasthan who innovates with the traditional medium of storytelling. There is also Odissi by Guru Gajendra Panda. You can also attend the various talk sessions. Good four-day timepass.

Cut-n-keep schedule
May 10
Azad Bhawan Auditorium, ICCR
7.15 pm
Musical Orchestra from Kazakhstan    
8.15 pm
Kathak: Gitanjali Lal & Troupe
May 11
Azad Bhawan Auditorium, ICCR
7.15 pm
Gulab Bari by Artists from Banaras Hindu University
8.15 pm
Duryodhana Vadham by International Kathakali Centre
May 12
The Stein Auditorium, India Habitat Centre
7.05 pm
Ramlila by Avadh Adars Ramelela Mandal, Ayodhya
7.30 pm
Talk on Arts and Healing by art therapist Cinzia Rigodanzo from Switzerland
7.45 pm
Gaaradi Dance from Puducherry
8.30 pm
Qawwali by Qutbi Brothers
 May 13
The Stein Auditorium, India Habitat Centre
7.05 pm
Kathputli by Puran Bhatt & Group
7.45 pm
Odissi by Guru Gajendra Panda 
8.30 pm
International Collaborative Music by G.S Rajan (Flute) & Jina Choi(Piano)

Ring: 9811423444
Entry: Azad Bhavan Auditorium (free); India Habitat Centre (by invitation)

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