Milap – the UK’s leading Indian Arts and Culture company – is preparing to celebrate Diwali with a week-long programme of music and dance that can be enjoyed from the comfort of your own home.
Diwali is the Indian festival of lights, usually lasting five days and celebrated during the Hindu Lunisolar month Kartika. One of the most popular festivals of India, Diwali symbolizes the spiritual “victory of light over darkness, good over evil, and knowledge over ignorance”.
Rising stars and internationally renowned performers will feature on Milap’s digital programme, with the ever-popular Music for the Mind & Soul series returning to the fore, with several concerts taking place across the week with Morning, Afternoon and Evening Raaga performances featuring instruments which are rarely seen performed in a concert setting in the UK, such as the Mandolin and the Nadaswaram. This national concert series is designed to make the audience relax and forget about their worries and focus on their mental health and wellbeing.
More highlights include a performance which has been choreographed using the language of the ancient art form of Kutiyattam, which is practised in the province of Kerala, and is one of India’s oldest living theatrical traditions. And for those feeling a little bit active, there will be two participatory sessions with Milap’s artist in residence, Sheetal Maru.
The festival of events kicks off with internationally renowned sitarist, Shakir Khan- one of the most promising young exponents of the legendary Etawah Gharana – energetically following in the musical footsteps of his prodigious father and guru, the sitar maestro, Ustad Shahid Parvez Khan.
Milap’s programme of events to celebrate Diwali will take place from 9th – 15th November across various streaming platforms. You can access all the events and see the full line-up and schedule at milapfest.com/live.
“Milap is delighted to bring this online Diwali programme to the people of Liverpool and beyond, featuring the very best of Indian Arts. Diwali was last celebrated by Milap back at the Lowry in Salford Quays over 10 years ago, where we had a programme of Events in the Quays Theatre followed by fireworks display off the Quays – which is now the home of Media City. Now we’re back virtually in Liverpool, broadcasting all over the world” – Pravinder Singh, Head of Programmes & Planning, Milap.
This year, Milap are also partnering with Digital Diwali to showcase four additional exciting events, including ‘The Home Coming’ on Saturday November 14th – a 20 minute performance of dance and storytelling, featuring the final part of seven days of stories by Supriya Nagarajan’s songs in a variety of Indian languages.
Created and produced by Walk the Plank, the live stream will conclude with Ravana, the ten headed demon King of Lanka, lighting up in spectacular fashion.
Walk the Plank is one of the UK’s leading outdoor arts specialists with 27 years’ experience of working with communities to create engaging site responsive (and socially distanced) work in public space. Based in Salford, Walk the Plank works regionally and internationally on projects of every shape and size.
Supported by Arts Council England and Greater Manchester Combined Authorities, Digital Diwali is a participatory live video stream & radio broadcast programme of Indian classical & contemporary music and dance, storytelling, mini spectacle, interactive workshops, and a fiery headline. Streaming across Greater Manchester and beyond, the event is delivered in partnership with Bolton Hindu Forum, Indian Association Oldham, Shree Bharatiya Mandal (Tameside), The Met (Bury) and, Salford based Outdoor Arts Experts Walk the Plank.
‘Over the last few months, we’ve found artists, ideas and inspiration to help people get through this remarkable and difficult year. Nobody expected Diwali 2020 to look like this, but distance and isolation have given us the chance to do some really exciting, unusual performances this Diwali. There are some stars of Indian music you may have already heard before, with exclusive Milap performances. And there are art forms and artists you’ve certainly never seen here before, including Nadaswaram by Enjikkudi Subramaniam, and Kuchipudi by Abhinandana Kodanda. Restrictions have brought opportunities and the chance to share surprising, engaging and beautiful Indian performances. Happy Diwali!’ – Alok Nayak, Artistic Director, Milap.
You can access all the online events taking place from 9th to 15th November 2020 by heading to milapfest.com/live.