Serendipity Arts Festival 2022 to enthrall Goa with dance, theatre and music performances
Panjim, December 2022: India’s largest multidisciplinary arts event, Serendipity Arts Festival, is back with an exciting array of inter-disciplinary performances taking place between 15 – 23 of December. The Performing Arts curators are putting together projects with world-class artists working on classical, experimental and contemporary forms, across dance, theatre and music performances this year.
The Festival brings together diverse creative expressions from the region of South Asia and promotes its cultural heritage through varied projects. The performance segment will see curation by Bickram Ghosh, Ehsaan Noorani, Quasar Thakore Padamsee, Mayuri Upadhya and Geeta Chandran. The music performances with multi-genre and unique performances will celebrate the coming together of traditional and contemporary forms.
A confluence of artists from diverse backgrounds will underline the Goan spirit of SAF. Curated by Goa-based classical guitarist Shyamant Behal, Music in the Park features some of Goa’s finest musicians who will regale audiences with daily performances.
Bickram Ghosh and Ehsaan Noorani will curate the Music section with a series of concerts covering diverse genres from classical, fusion, folk, indie pop, rock, and more. Bickram Ghosh will be curating performances with some of the best of world music and fusion artists like A. Shivamani, Taufiq Qureshi, Ricky Kej and others, across the 9 days of the Festival. Sufi-Folk Tales will see the coming together of Parwati Kumari and Folk-singer Kalpana Patowary for the first time, in a folk and qawwali jugalbandi. Bickram Ghosh will also be paying tribute to ace music composer RD Burman through his project titled The World of Pancham: An RD Burman Tribute. He will bring together a collection of songs and stories in memory of the legendary music director
Innovators like Sanjay Mondal will be leading a group of children through instruments made from scrap and waste material.
Speaking about being a curator at the 5th edition of the Festival, Mr. Bickram Ghosh, Curator, Serendipity Arts Festival said, “The Festival in the last 5 editions has become an important platform for showcasing the Indian arts on a global scale.” Adding further about his curation he said, “When I spoke to Serendipity, I realized what they were asking me to do actually is down the lane of my personal bigger purpose, which is to put Indian sounds onto a larger canvas. While curating for the festival there were two things to consider. Firstly, keeping the vast scale in mind. Secondly, keeping the variety in mind and taking both of these elements to create a bigger sound and put it into a format which makes the final outcome more festival friendly, something that I have been working at for several years, now.”
Celebrating India’s 75th year of Independence, the Festival will offer artists a platform to perform and showcase their art. Focused on bringing regional expressions to the fore, musician Ehsaan Noorani will be taking the mandate of inclusion and celebration of diverse regional voices a step further with his project ‘Spotlight: Indie & Folk Music Showcase’. He is promoting talent from Northeast India by featuring artists like Avora Records, Trance Effect, Tetseo Sisters, Rudy Wallang & Family Band, Takar Nabam and Abdon Mech
Speaking about his curation Mr. Ehsaan Noorani, Curator, Serendipity Arts Festival said, “The North-east has always been on my radar.It was during the lockdown when I was going through my Instagram when I came across a lot of artists from the Northeast, and realized that their talent significantly noteworthy. And, unfortunately, I realized that these bands/singers mostly tour in the Northeast itself and sometimes do events in some pockets of Delhi and Mumbai. The pan-India appeal was missing. I thought that this would be a good platform for them to showcase their material to thousands of people who would be visiting the festival.”
The programming this year will give weightage to Interdisciplinarity, which will be further explored by pthrough their projects intersecting dance, drama, music and storytelling.
Speaking about the curation, Geeta Chandran, Curator, Serendipity Arts Festival said, “I am energized by my curatorial assignment for the 2022 Serendipity Fest. Reclaiming performance after a pandemic hiatus got my juices flowing again! This is indeed a unique opportunity for me to bring to the festival truly inter disciplinary work since the festival gives curators complete freedom to explore the creative forms of expression.Puppeteers with dancers,theatre artists with dancers,different dance forms dialoging with each other, all very exciting and fresh”. Chandran’s curation will include projects like Game of Dice from the Mahabharata, a dance production that draws from Kathakali, Chhau and contemporary dance with its creativity and experimentation.
Rumiyana, a musical puppet theater performance by Ishara Puppet Theatre will synergise puppets, actors, and dancers, to create a multimedia performance with music, animations, and digital projections and recreate the works of the great Sufi poet, and philosopher Mevlana Jalaluddin Rumi. A thematic presentation of Mohiniyattam, Panchabhutam: Elements of Existence curated by Chandran in a recital format by Neena Prasad will explore the theme of the five elements (air, water, fire, earth and space) to showcase the process of creation, and their connection to every living creature.
About this edition’s Performance segment, Smriti Rajgarhia, Director, Serendipity Arts Festival, said, “The performing arts segment has attempted to address the traditional, contemporary and experimental at Serendipity Arts Festival. The projects for this edition will explore interdisciplinarity and collaboration. This year, apart from having an exciting line-up of popular headlining acts combining a variety of genres, the curations willalso showcase the diverse creative expressions of the region, explored through the performing arts.”
In its 5th edition, the Serendipity Arts Festival will explore ways to enhance public engagement with the arts and boost the soft power of the nation by making art and culture a part of everyday conversations. A line-up of immersive and interdisciplinary projects curated by Quasar Thakore Padamsee , such as Pah-Lak, based on real stories from the 2008 Lhasa riots, and a play titled, Made in Ilva’ based on real-life testimonies and poems from the workers at the Ilva steel plant in Taranto. Speaking about his curation, Quasar Thakore Padamsee, Curator, Serendipity Arts Festival, said, “The NEED to tell the story, and to tell it well is what so much of Theatre is about. But coming out of the pandemic, it seems to become even more important. Providing the space for performance to sharing stories that are authentic seemed necessary. So, a lot of the programming this year has hinged on not just what the story is but WHO is telling it. Incredibly, so much of it has turned out to be varied kinds of presentations and such a diverse range of performers. We feel that all these stories need telling, and these storytellers need to be listened to.”
Exploring the post-pandemic transition from the virtual to the physical, choreographer, educationist and creative entrepreneur Mayuri Upadhya will focus on engaging and immersive nature of the arts that delves deeper in the culture and its stories. ‘On the Move’ will feature young dancers from around India with focus on contemporary dance forms like Latha Srinivasa, Vicky Bhartaya, Nilava Sen and Promita Karfa who will premiere their work at the festival.
Speaking about her curation Mayuri Upadhya, Curator, Serendipity Arts Festival, said, “This year, I am very excited to bring world-class Indian acts to the festival. Our programming is a perfect mix of immersive, experimental, and inclusive. Our programme has spectacular creations by the veteran Madhavi Mudgal, international choreographer Ashley Lobo, the mythology musical 18 Days by Sharath and Bharat Prabhat, a new take on Ramayana in Shruthi and Parshawanath Upadhye’s Abha, and award -winning contemporary works by Surjit Nongmeikapam and Priyabrat Panigrahi.”