This Thursday, audiences in Mumbai will have a chance to experience the very roots of Goan folklore. Casa de Goa’s Ekvat Group, a cultural enterprise comprising Portuguese immigrants from Goa, will be in town as a part of Kantar Goa, a song-and-dance exhibit demonstrating the styles of Dekknis and Mandos.
Recognised as forms of Goan harvest celebration, the group has incorporated a twist of Hindu mythology into their act, including the tale of Krishna and his gopis “to appeal to those unfamiliar with Goan ethnicity,” says Maria Virginia, spokesperson of the group, which has travelled all the way from Portugal to conduct a multiple-city tour in India that will cover Goa, Bengaluru, Mumbai and Delhi.
This is the Lisbon-based group’s second visit to India after 1999. This time around, not only are the performers different, but their performances too have changed. In addition to showcasing strictly traditional Goan folk songs and dances as they did previously, this time they’ll also perform some of their original compositions. Also on the cards is a Bharat-natyam performance.
“Some of our Goan dances in fact originated from Bharatanatyam,” explains Virginia. And by including this dance form in their shows, Ekvat hopes to offer the viewer a showcase of Goan folk history, dating as far back as they possibly can. The aim behind the Ekvat Group is essentially to keep the traditions of Goa alive among the younger generations. Virginia concludes, “Goan culture is rich with the spirit of celebration. We aim to assert just how rich and diverse this spirit is by getting our audiences to experience it first hand.”
The Ekvat Group will perform at NCPA Tata Theatre, Nariman Point at 7 pm on Thursday