Performance Unique to Community

Having spent five years of my childhood in Kolkata, my understanding of community and culture started to develop there. From studying and writing essays in school on Durga Puja, to witnessing live processions, the culture kept developing in my mind. Walking into grand Durga Puja Pandals holding my parents’ hands, and watching people perform at those pandals, including myself, provided me with a sense of belonging to the community. Continue reading Performance Unique to Community

Earliest experience of Performance

Born in Delhi, in a Punjabi family, I was about three years old when I shifted to Kolkata, West Bengal with my parents, as my father got a job transfer. It was in Kolkata, that my life actually started, from my education to the coming up of dance in my life. Following includes the earliest memories of my performance

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Sketches: Performers Unique to Community

While searching for references for the performances I observed that I was inclining more towards feature films as a source for Visual references of Gondhal. Not that it is wrong to refer to feature films but the fact that constantly and consistently I turned to feature films first, caught my attention. I made peace with this idea that because these artforms were introduced to me … Continue reading Sketches: Performers Unique to Community

Folk traditions – what are we taking with us?

The research of the performing arts led to shocking revelations to me.  I found archaic, regressive, unjust, and painful traditions which started these performances. Especially in case of waghya-murali community. The times and situations have changed, and hence the practices have also evolved, leaving the act of physical dance, music and lyrics and attire as mere images of the past frozen in time. I found … Continue reading Folk traditions – what are we taking with us?

Fragments of early memories of performance

My earliest experience of watching a live performance was a dance at the school gathering in the school hall when I was 4 years old. We were sitting in a gallery above and watching the performance below. Initially I could only see the shadows of the performers and thought that the shadows are the performance I was supposed to look at. But then afterwards when … Continue reading Fragments of early memories of performance

Gondhal : Performance unique to community

Gondhal: The gondhal, a dramatic rite of goddess worship, is a traditional family observance in Maharashtra. It is a form of worship that is performed exclusively by a group of men as part of rituals after ceremonies like marriage or a new birth. These are traditionally sponsored by Deshastha  (Sub caste of) Brahmins and most Marathas in honour of their family goddess. The literal meaning … Continue reading Gondhal : Performance unique to community