RASHTRIYA SANSKRITI MAHOTSAV West Zone Cultural Centre, Udaipur, Rajasthan Takes a Bow

Jaipur, Rashtriya Sanskriti Mahotsav hosted by The Ministry of Culture, Government of India showcased some exquisite performances co-ordinated by the West Zone Cultural Centre, Udaipur .The chief guest for the evening Shri Manohar Parrikar, Minister of Defence, Government of India, was welcomed through a spectacular tunnel of ‘ghode modni’ artists from Goa. (‘Ghode’ means ‘horse’ and ‘Modni’ means ‘gyrations and dance-like movements’, and is literally a Dance involving horse-like movements)
It was an evening on 6th day of Mahotsav at Indira Gandhi National Centre in New Delhi for the Arts, full of musical surprises, performances included art forms like Dekhni from Goa, Kalbeliya, from Rajasthan (performed by the Jogi community to the sounds of the ‘Been’); Angi Gher (from Barmer, a dance performed during the festive season of Holi); Bhapang (folk songs by residents of Mewat), Langa and Manganiyar from Jaisalmer, Jodhpur & Badmer perform their unique craft.

‘Mer Rajputs’ from Kathiawad (Gujarat ) performed the heroic dance ‘Talwar Raas’ with their flashing swords; dancers from Dang of Gujarat formed a human pyramid as they moved to mesmerizing music.  another highlight of the evening was the ‘Sidhi Dhamal’ performance. This is a traditional dance of the Sidhis from Bharuch(Gujarat ), who are said to be originally from Africa and typically perform this dance to honour ’Baba Gaur’ by throwing coconuts in the air and breaking it with their heads. Jhankar, a medley of music with 13 + different types of traditional instruments and vocals formed the attraction for the night bringing the folk performances to a crescendo. The evening came alive with the sounds of Taufiq Qureshi, ace percussionist and internationally acclaimed composer. Being the son and disciple of the legendary tabla maestro Ustad Allarakha; Taufiq’s performance showcased the traditional flavour and intricacies of Indian rhythm, interwoven with the sparkle of his phenomenal command over contemporary world percussion.
The Rashtriya Sanskriti Mahotsav features an eight day extravaganza, which takes the festive season a notch higher with its food and shopping, bringing out the very best of indigenous handicrafts and flavours. One can indulge in dishes prepared by Traditional Master Chefs featuring menus from coastal delights to rich and palatable delicacies to delicately flavoured sweets representing the Indian culture.
The Indira Gandhi National Centre for the Arts (IGNCA) Venue boasts of shop-till-you-drop aangans with a wide array of traditional Indian arts and crafts like Haveli paintings from Punjab, Rogan artworks from Gujarat, Banaras silk, Kalamkari (hand-painted or block-printed cotton textile), Tanjore paintings and many more. The eight day festival features 150 art forms, performance by more than 1500 artists; 32 forms of paintings: visual arts; 400 master craftsmen; cuisine by traditional master. A free entry for all, 10 am to 10 pm festival features maidani kalakar everyday; with stage performances with folk & celebrity artists from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. at the IGNCA, 11, Mansingh Road. This festival has been envisioned to represent myriad dimensions of our cultural traditions and to generate pride in being an Indian. The Rashtriya Sanskriti Mahotsav is definitely going to be an affair to remember and one that the nation will look forward to every year.

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