After establishing itself as one of Mumbai’s premier cultural hubs with more than four decades behind it, the National Centre for Performing Arts (NCPA) will now carry its cultural legacy to other cities. It is set to travel to Delhi and Bangalore to host its first multi-city Indian classical festival, Adi Anant, in January and February respectively.
“With this event, we are raising our own bar. We are now more than just a venue for cultural activities, but a curator of high-class events,” says Dr Swarnalata Rao, head of programming, Indian classical music.
Aiming to offer a mix of traditional and contemporary/experimental genres in each city, January 7 will see jazz virtuoso Louiz Banks perform with tabla maestro Zakir Hussain in Mumbai. The next day will feature a traditional recital by vocalist Rashid Khan and sitar-player Shujaat Hussain Khan.
The Delhi leg, which takes place on January 25 and 26, will witness collaboration among sitar player Niladri Kumar, percussionist Taufiq Qureshi and drummer Gino Banks among others.
Noted vocalist of Patiala gharana, Kaushiki Chakrabarty Desikan will perform at the Bangalore edition of the travelling festival on February 10. Her recital will be followed by an interesting percussion collaboration — Tala vadya kacheri — featuring tabla player Anindo Chatterjee, mridangam player Vidwan Kaaraikkudi Mani, V Suresh on the ghatam and N Amrith on the kanjira. This percussion recital will also attempt to bring together the musical traditions of both Hindustani and Carnatic streams in a rhythmic dialogue.
“Besides traditional Indian classical performers, the line-up also includes traditionally- trained musicians who took up innovation and experiments for their artistic expression. We believe that we have to take note of contemporary voices in the genres as any tradition enriches itself by evolving and innovating,” says Rao.