From colourfully dressed artistes singing traditional folk songs, to performing on ancient musical instruments – the three-day festival Folk Safar held at The International Centre Goa, Dona Paula, Museum of Goa, Pilerne and Sadhana Dell’Arte, in Santa Cruz was a delight for enthusiasts, in March. Artistes such as folk dancer Suwa Devi; Dil Mastana a musical group performed traditional Langa music and Sufi; Thane Khan Manganiyar and his troupe performed folk music from Jaisalmer desert. There was a display of handicrafts at the venue. Goan icon Remo Fernandes too sang the famous Undra Mhojea Mama at the event, who was accompanied on the spot by an artiste playing the khartal.
The impact of the pandemic has affected the lives and livelihoods of the rural artists who used to perform at various venues around the country. With no events taking place, performing artists have become vulnerable both economically and socially. To boost the folk performing artists, Banglanatak Dot Com took the initiative to host the event.
“Goans loved Baul music. They said it touched their soul. Desert tunes exposed them to the Langa Maganiyar music history and depth, Kalbelia song and dance was a discovery of masterpiece heritage and handicrafts provided them the understanding of traditional knowledge and skill,” says Amitava Bhattacharya, founder director of Banglanatak.