Mar 13, 2007

Elephanta Festival 2007

As is rapidly becoming an annual fixation, we went to the latest iteration of the Elephanta Festival. The Wife being culturally steeped and all of that sort of things, and I being in love with the ferry ride and the monkeys that tend to shake the trees right above the stage at all of the juiciest parts of the performances.

We usually choose which day(s) we want to attend, since the artists, while usually great, aren't always the type The Wife wants to bestow with her audience. This time, however, Day 1 was a supertreat. A lady called Alarmel Valli was performing (Bharatnatyam) and Pandit Hariprasad Chaurasia (Flute) and Pandit Bhavani Shankar Kathak (Pakhawaj) were the two sessions. The Wife's sparkling eyes said that at least two out of three would be superb. And as all Erich Segal readers should know, two of three is not bad. It's two out of three.

My flickr visitors will already have spotted the sixteen thousand-odd sunsets I shot in the ferry ride over to the Elephanta Island. It was lovely as usual. We got our cherished seats on top of the rickety ferry boat (both rides are included in the Rs 300 ticket) and shot our heads off. The three tickets are because The Wife dragged a friend along as well.

1024x768 image of Pt Chaurasia performing. All right reservedThe performances, from what I can tell were good. Valli was damn good (The Wife says) and Pandit Chaurasia was God himself. While I can't tell good classical music from bad jhankar beat remixes, even I thought he was damn good. So he must have been absolutely superb. The monkeys didn't shake anything either, so they must have been enthralled as well. Too bad, the fat lady who sat beside me sniggering through the entire flute performance didn't even have the same dignity as the monkeys. If I were the vindictive type, I'd put up her sorry mug here in a flash. But I won't.

1024x768 image of Alarmel Valli performing. All right reservedThe ferry ride back was even more magnificent. The music calms people down, and the forty-five odd minute ride is usually quiet. And when you hop off, you're on Cafe Mondegar's doorstep... Basically, we're going back again next year. If you're even half inclined towards the arts, try this one for size.

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