The curtains will rise on the 16th Bharat Rang Mahotsav on January 4 with a play that has all the trappings of a classic. Directed by Kerala-based KN Panikkar, Chhaya Shakuntalam will be enacted by the National School of Drama Repertory Company, which is celebrating its 50th anniversary. The play is a retelling of Kalidasa’s Abhijnana Shakuntalam. Shakuntala represents the green world of nature and Dushyant, a hunter who shoots down a deer. The play highlights the hunt for a prey as well as the quest of a desirous mind.
On a Classical Note
Ustad Shahid Parvez Khan, one of the most skilled sitar players, takes the stage to commemorate the 75th year of Ustad Ghulam Sadiq Khan of the famous Rampur Sahaswan gharana. With a specialisation in khayal, thumri and bhajans, Sadiq Khan regaled the audiences for more than six decades. This year will also feature the soulful brilliance of Ustad Rashid Khan (below pic) at Aadi Anant, a festival organised by Mumbai’s NCPA. The concert will be held at FICCI auditorium on January 12. Besides renowned greats who will be performing, keep a watch out for upcoming artistes. US-based Alam Khan, sarod player and the youngest son of Ustad Ali Akbar Khan will embark upon his India tour. His concerts might have music connoisseurs sit in judgement; comparisons will be inevitable. Another concert to look forward to will be by Pakistan-based dhrupad singer Aliya Rasheed. A blind musician and a student of famous dhrupadiyas, the Gundecha Brothers, Rasheed is also the only female Pakistani dhrupad singer. Dhrupad, a genre that emerged from the Vedas has many references to Indian mythology and religion, for which Rasheed has earned quite a bit of flak in Pakistan. We look forward to her favourite Ganesh vandana at India Habitat Centre this January.
Running in the Family
When he came on board Kaun Banega Crorepati as the game show’s host 14 years ago, Amitabh Bachchan set a trend that film stars would have the courage to follow only a decade later. His next big move will hopefully begin yet another trend. He leads the cast of a fiction show on Sony, directed by Anurag Kashyap, which will go on air this year. His wife Jaya, too, is said to have joined the cast of another show for the same channel. Last heard, even daughter-in-law Aishwarya has received a plump offer from the teleworld.