Beyond Bombay: In the name of free spirit

Wednesday, 12 March 2014 - 6:15am IST | Place: Mumbai | Agency: DNA
The desert state of Rajasthan calls all those who think they're a wanderer at heart.

Is there any connection between Rajasthani folk artistes and Spanish flamenco dancers? If you thought no, then it's time to think again. The Jodhpur Flamenco and Gypsy Festival has originated from an idea that all gypsies worldwide migrated originally from India and mostly from Western Rajasthan. And even though they may live anywhere in the world, they have carried the sound of the Thar with them and which is why Flamenco dancers footwork is the same as the Rajasthani clapper just as the vocals of a gypsy singer are not too far from the aalap of a manganiyar singer. And to celebrate this idea the three-day fest will take place at Mehrangarh Fort from tomorrow.

The fest
The JFGF has based its foundation on the very fact that the Rajasthani folk music and Spanish Flamenco resonate with many common threads and the advent of this festival in India will create a unique musical experience. The three-day festival sets the stage for music and dance performances by Rajasthani and international artist culminating in enchanting evenings followed by gala dinners' and after-parties. While a lot of similarities have been explored before between the dance forms Flamenco and Kathak, a gamut of cultural ethnicity will be brought to the forefront in a first-of-its-kind dance and music festival.

The artistes
Some of the renowned Spanish artists such as Pepe Habichuela, Josemi Carmona, Chano Dominguez, Augustin Carbonel 'El Bola' and Karen Lugo, amongst many others from world will be seen performing. Habichuela who is a Spanish flamenco guitarist and is regarded as one of the masters of Flamenco music. He has collaborated with the Indian orchestra group The Bollywood Strings, helmed by violin player Chandru, and released an eight-track album, Yerbag├╝ena. He has also worked with producer Nitin Sawhney and sitar player Anoushka Shankar in the past.

While Indialucia, the band formed in 1999, they released their self-titled debut album only in 2005. The band members – Miguel Czachowski, Giridhar Udupa, Avaneendra Sheolikar, Sandesh Popatkar, Pierluca Pineroli, and others – play a series of western and Indian instruments. Tamar Gonzalez is not new to India and has also collaborated with Rajasthani musicians before. For details music enthusiasts can check http://jfgfestival.com/lineup.


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