What happens when 50 strangers from various cities gather to travel to a place unexplored? Fun, discovery and friendship build along with stories to be shared for years. A random tag on Facebook made me register for an online contest; always skeptical about winning these contests, I wrote the answers and within 10 days, I received an email after which I was packing my bags for a three day trip to Barmer in Rajasthan. [Read more…] about Barmer: The Underrated World of Heritage & Art
Emotions need to be expressed and creativity takes courage. Art is the only way to unveil what lies inside of us; having multiple interpretations and making the world a little better.
Long before what the present day art is; drawings, symbols, paintings, street theatre and folk music were the epitome of expressions. War, battles, social movement, agitation, love, cruelty, peace, harmony, dogmas, and politics etc. have been open to interpretations for the common people through art in any form suitable. Just because sometimes, we don’t understand it, doesn’t make it less imperative.
Art has a monumental impact on the society and is an undaunted force of change. With this notion, young art lovers Surya Siras and Vaidika Wadhera decided to invite city’s poets, notable speakers, musicians, storytellers and comedian to share their expressions in an open mic session.
At Mic & Munch, city’s conceptual café which promotes music, storytelling, and art combined with amiable ambience and delicious food opened its gate for all to see the varied definitions of art. Wikipedia defines ‘Open Mic’ as an event that is commonly held at venues with or without a stage where newer or emerging artists are given an opportunity to practice and improve, with a view to getting paid work in the future. Also, it is an event where anyone can sign up to perform.
The first artist to perform at the open mic was a 19-year-old storyteller Pragya Jain who put her emotions in words immaculately and connected to the audience on a deep level. She was followed by Unnati Gupta, a poetess who took the centre stage. Surya filled the in between gaps with his funny anecdotes, love poems and tragic short stories that instilled a tornado of emotions.
To shake up the mood, a 19-year-old chef with a passion for music, Vaidika Wadhera, performed Bollywood as well as English songs on guitar and ukulele including two special songs ‘Nahi Saamne’ and ‘Rubaroo’ as a tribute to maestro AR Rahman.
After the groovy tunes, I set my foot on the stage and while I had thought of reciting few poems, I instead, decided to open up about mental health, anxiety, and depression. Amid silent audience and peering eyes, I spoke about the prevalent mental health issue and to my wonder, I found people who have had or are going through the same issue. After a serious topic, poetry was recited by Rachit Boliya who took the breath away with haikus and love notes.
To give a comic relief, upcoming stand-up comedian of the city, Rohit mimicked Bollywood actors and gave all a hearty laugh. With time, all of the seats, bean bags, and even the floor was occupied by audience members and Surya Siras told a tragic love story (although he said it was fiction, it was kind of ambivalent when he said that every story is somehow inspired by real life) that baffled people as to whether to sigh with sadness or feel mushy for it had a strong tinge of love in it.
City’s renowned architect, entrepreneur and a mother of two, Priyanka Arjun took the stage as a motivational speaker and talked about her like, before and after marriage, with an architect and interior design company in her name and two loving kids taking the most of her daily time. She was an inspiration to all women who aspire to have a family while focusing on their career and her insights impelled many to pursue their dreams.
Many of the people present in the open mic session were newcomers or had been on the stage for a couple of times. But the next artist who performed was Tripti Vyas known as Tappu, who is an RJ, songwriter, and singer. She, with her guitar strapped on her shoulders, performed an original composition and an old Bollywood song from the ’60s. After she performed a few songs, Tappu was accompanied by Spanish musician Richard, who with trombone and metal flute jazzed up the good vibes.
For what it’s worth, more artists including Harshit Sidhwani (musician), Dhruvank Charan (musician) and Amulya performed over the course of the evening. There were music, poetry, stories, comedy, speech and great food that made the evening worth remembering. Special thanks to Surya and Vaidika for bringing all forms of artwork together, and it was fabulous!