Kalidas Festival starts with mind-boggling performances

Nagpur: The three-day Music Festival started at Suresh Bhat Sabhagruh on Tuesday to a full house. Designed on the theme of inner voice of women, the festival pays tribute to Kavi Kalidas’s magnum opus ‘Abhigyan Shakuntalam’. And also to the talent of women artistes by featuring six of them over three days.
The festival opened with a Bharatanatyam recital by city-based classical dancer Shrimathi Madkholkar, who presented the story of Shakuntala’s life with her graceful and expressive dance movements. Her 20 minutes performance brought out the pathos of Shakuntala’s life and portrayed the tragic events that struck her and her joy of being united again with King Dushyant.

Taking the stage next was tabla maestro Anuradha Pal, an accomplished artiste who has won laurels in India and abroad, along with the members of her Stri Shakti Taal Vrand, a first all-women classical band. It comprised sarod player Shoili Dutta, Nagmani on Carnatic mandolin, Ramiya Ramesh on ghatak and Charu Hariharan on mridangam.

The group began with Ganesh Vandana and moved on to a presentation in raag Tilak Kamod presented in 4 taal 11 matra and followed it up with another in raga Durga. Mesmerizing the audience with their skills, the group also presented various compositions that were unique for their style and had the audience joining in with claps.

‘Stri Shakti Aaye Hum’ with Ramiya giving the vocals was an ode to women. Pal concluded with a composition in raag Piloo, ‘Sare jahan se achha Hindustan hamara’.

Taking the stage last at 10.15pm was Hindustani classical vocalist Arti Ankalikar Tikekar who, without much preamble, began with a traditional bandish in raag Durga, ‘Sakhi mori rum jhum’. In keeping with the theme of women power, the renowned vocalist picked up a bandish composed by Vidushi Prabha Atre — Stri Shakti — in drut lay which presented various forms of Durga.


This is the first time I am attending Kalidas Festival. I stay at Sakkardara which is close to Suresh Bhat auditorium. I enjoy classical music and am looking foreword to hearing Kaushiki Chakrabarti and Begum Parveen Sultana

Tushar Vyas | doctor

I am here for the first time and got curious about this theme of inner voice of women. The performances were very enjoyable

Padma Rao | interior designer

Kalidas Festival is a treat as it is held at state-of-the-art auditorium. Renowned artistes perform here. It is indeed commendable that the administration continues to organize this event for the benefit of music lovers in the city

Manjusha Mardikar | doctor

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