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AAKAR - Fine Arts & Festivals

Multi-lingual Theater Festival 2010:

The Academy held a two-day multi-lingual Theater festival in DM Hall in Kala Academy on 6 and 7 November 2010 (Saturday-Sunday). To encourage local talents and to bring Goan artists and those from other states on the same platform to perform, the festival started with a Konkani Tiatr (Matiechem Bhangar Korunk) on 6th November (Saturday) at 6.30pm. On the second day (7th November, Sunday, at 6pm), a Bangla theater by the artists from National School of Drama, Delhi was presented. This was followed by a hilarious drama in Hindi. In tune to the objectives and philosophy of the Academy, the festival was kept open to all with free entry

Goa-Bengal Fest: Indradhanush 2011:

A 3-day Bengal Festival in Goa of food, cuisine, handicrafts, dance, music & literature was held from 22 to 24 April 2011 at Mandovi Riviera Waterfront, Panaji. The philosophy behind organizing such fest was our belief that economic globalization cum integration will not be effective (and complete) as long as there is no integration of culture and that of mind. It means cultural integration is must to sustain economic progress and remove deficit of trust. Language is the best tool to address this deficit. And who could be better than Gurudev Tagore to lead us. In this background the Indradhanush was organized to celebrate the 151th birth anniversary of Rabindranath Tagore in Goa, in a fitting way to promote mutual respect, accommodation of thoughts, minds, and goodwill.

The three day festival of food, cuisine, handicraft, dresses, books, culture, music, and dances was organized to celebrate the togetherness of diverse cultures of India. The celebration included several Food Courts offering typical and authentic food and cuisine from Bengal and Goa. In addition, rural handicrafts from Santiniketan (particularly encouraging environment friendly products of jute), books and authentic traditional dresses (men and women-wares) were displayed. Sahitya Akademi erected a Tagore Gallery, depicting books, painting, and sketches done by Tagore.

The Festival was announced open by the Mayor of Panaji Mr Yatin Parekh and inaugurated by Mr Pratap Singh Rane (Speaker, Goa Legislative Assembly) on 22 April 2011. The honorable MLA of Panaji & Leader of Opposition Mr Manohar Parrikar was the Chief Guest during the Valedictory function held on 24 April.

Technical support was received from Viswa-Bharati, Rabindra Bharati Universities, Sahitya Akademi and Amar Kutir (Santiniketan). Major financial support came from the Ministry of Culture, Government of India. In addition, Department/ Ministry of Tourism, Art & Culture and Information & Publicity of the Government of Goa offered help with logistic and advertisements. We also received some support from the local industrialists and entrepreneurs in the form of advertisement to the Festival magazine. Ten percent of all receipts put together after deduction of all expenses was handed over to Tapovan- a registered not-for-profit body (Registration No: 633/Goa/2007) involved in doing extensive social service to help needy destitute aged persons.

Cultural Items: This year was the 151th Birth Anniversary of two great personalities- a Scientist-Entrepreneur Acharya Prafulla Chandra Roy, and an Versatile artist-Entrepreneur Gurudev Tagore. We celebrated the gift of these two complete human beings.  Some major events were:

    • Lecture cum Panel discussion on influence of Tagore in shaping 21st Century India
    • Documentary film shows on Artist Tagore and Nationalist Tagore
    • Online Essay competition for senior students on Tagore’s influence in Gender Inequality, Rural Development, and Nation Building
    • Dance on Rabindra-Sangeet in Bangla and Hindi. Drawing competition on Tagore
    • All Goa Dance and Singing competition based on semi-classical songs

In addition, on all the three days of Indradhanush, there was presentation of folk music of east and west coasts of India. These included Baul from Santiniketan, Lavni from Kolhapur and music from all intervening states (Oriya, Telegu, Kannada, Marathi,etc). The famous Laxman Das Baul and his group from Santiniketan rendered Baul songs during the festival. Baul music celebrates celestial love, and declares divine love and affection in very earthy terms. With such a liberal interpretation of love, it is only natural that Baul music transcends religion. In fact some of the most famous baul composers, such as Lalon Fakir, have been of Muslim faith. Baul has successfully integrated elements of Tantra, Sufi Islam, Vaishnavism and Buddhism. All Goa Group anf solo dance and singining competition were held, so also the drawing competition.

Food Court: The love for food is legendary. The Food Court served wholesome, tasty and affordable dishes of Bengal and Goa. Renowned Chefs from Kolkata, Mumbai, Pune, Santiniketan, and Goa prepared special vegetarian, non-vegetarian and fast food items. Again no course is complete without sweets. Special sweet makers from Mumbai with logistic support from the Panaji based Mithai Mandir created the mouth watering Bengali sweets- an exemplary piece of collaboration, with promised transfer of technology.

Dress Material and Handicrafts: Rural India, known for its hand-woven textiles, richly embroidered fabrics, and authentic saris in exclusive designs have been prized by all for centuries. Among these are the Baluchari, Dhakai-Jamdhani, Kantha, Taant, Dhonekhali, Begumpuri, Tangail, and Santipur saris. Dhuti is very popular in eastern India, particularly during rituals and special occasions of festivities. Sometimes, it is the ethnic pajama-kurta or dhuti-panjabi, which holds sway. Stalls will display some of this traditional, fashionable yet authentic dress material for ladies and gents. Handicraft items covered a wide variety from terracotta dolls to leather Shantinikatani purses, handbags, bangles, candle and incense stands, ashtrays, lamps, bedroom slippers, wall hangings, decorative statuettes, jute and paper bags, shopping bags, chiffon thread jewellery etc. Stalls displayed several of these items including those made up of eco-friendly JUTE at the Festival.

Knowledge Stall: The Knowledge stalls displayed Books of leading literary giants (Tagore, Sarat Chandra, Bankim Chandra, Satyajit Roy, Mashewata Devi, and others), scientists and social reformers, and also DVDs, VCDs of Renowned films were displayed by Sahitya Akademi (Mumbai) (please see Unmesh for details of this section).

Short Film Festival 2012:

A 2-film festival was organized in Cardium- the NIO auditorium in Dona Paula in October 2012. The films screened were: I AM (Hindi) and Bariwali (Bangla)

Suchitra Sen Film Festival 2014:

The Academy, in collaboration with Entertainment Society of Goa were organized a 3-day Film Festival in the capital city of Panaji in Goa from 11 till 13 April 2014 as a tribute to the late Suchitra Sen, one of the most talented heroines of all times in Indian Cinema. In addition to screening of very popular and meaningful films of late Ms Sen, the festival had also screened films from our neighboring country- Bangladesh, as also that from Kolkata and Goa (Konkani film). The schedule was chosen reflecting on the mandate of this Academy to integrate various cultures of the world in a harmonious way. The films ware screened in one of best auditoriums in the city (Marquinez Palace, Panaji) and was watched by more than thousand professionals, artists including film Directors and cinema lovers. Glimpses of the festival is given in Photo gallery

Transcend - A Rituparno Ghosh Film Festival 2014

The Ganga Zuari Academy, in collaboration with NIO Staff Club, organized a 2-day Film Festival on 8 and 9 November 2014 to offer tribute to the late Rituparno Ghosh, one of the most talented film-directors of all times in Indian Cinema. Top four of his internationally acclaimed and National award winning films was screened reflecting on the mandate of this Academy to integrate various cultures of the world in a harmonious way. The films were screened in one of best auditoriums in the city (Cardium, Dona Paula) and were watched by hundreds of professionals, artists including film Directors, cinema lovers and general public - see details

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Ganga Zuari Academy - Panaji - Goa - India