Folk arts stand the risk of disappearing: Scholar
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Folk arts stand the risk of disappearing: Scholar

December 9, 2022
  • Folklorist Dr. P.K. Rajashekhar cautions against aping the West
  • Janapadotsava begins at Rangayana as part of Bahuroopi fest

Mysore/Mysuru: As a prelude to the Bahuroopi national theatre festival that is all set to reflect the theme of ‘Indianness’, ‘Janapadotsava’ — a folk festival, was inaugurated at Vanaranga in Rangayana premises last evening.

Renowned folklorist and scholar Dr. P.K. Rajashekhar inaugurated the ‘Janapadotsava’ in the presence of renowned Yakshagana artiste Keremane Shivananda Hegade.

To symbolise the festival theme of ‘Indianness’, an artiste wearing the outfit of National Bird Peacock carrying various other national symbols as the bird’s feathers danced on the stage, attracting a loud applause from the audience.

Addressing the gathering, Dr. Rajashekhar said that youths must take on the role of protecting the folk tradition of the land. They are intricate, unique, have earthy tones, and are passed on from generation to generation. Indian folk art depicts the story of how our society looked like in the past and the many factors that influenced the society, he said.

Folk art is not something that gets widely discussed and in the present day scenario except during folk festivals, it faces the threat of getting lost unless the youths take over the mantle. “Folk art is like a joint family where everyone loves and helps everyone and forms a natural bonding. It is a distribution of love,” he noted.

The Indian folk art is the root of all cultures that have developed in the due course and it is the mother of all cultures. The art has also served as a medium of expression for the cultures of nomadic tribes and ethnic groups within the country.  “To preserve the folk art and its essence is to preserve the rich Indian culture and heritage. Without timely care and caution, they stand the risk of disappearing,” Dr. Rajashekhar cautioned.

“Under the influence of globalisation and lack of knowledge about the rich cultural heritage of the country, the youths are attracted towards the Western culture and lifestyle. The need of the hour is to attract them towards Indian culture. If the culture existed in the country, it was because of its deep roots in rural areas,” he added.

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Indianness is mother

Rangayana Director Addanda C. Cariappa said that India is not just a land. “It is not a 60×40 plot. It is our mother and we must respect and revere her for our survival,” he said and explained the theme of Indianness.

He said that like every year, art camp, folk camp, film festival, national seminar, book mela, exhibition of artwork, food mela and hands-on experience and demonstration will be held.

Theatre troupes from seven States will perform plays in seven languages. There will be 12 Kannada plays and a Tulu play. All plays will be staged at Bhoomigeeta, Kalamandira, Vanaranga, Kirurangamandira, B.V. Karanth Ranga Chavadi and Sampath Rangamandira.

As part of ‘Janapadotsava’, ‘Kamsale’ was performed by Mahadev and troupe of Nanjangud, while a Yakshagana ‘Panchavati’ by Keremane Shivananda Hegade and an Idagunji Mela were also staged. Overall, this edition of Bahuroopi will feature various folk forms like Yakshagana, Kamsale, Puja Kunita, Dollu Kunita, Nadaswara, Goravara Nrutya, Neelagarara Mela, Somana Kunita, Karaga-Kolata, Kangilu, Manteswamy Haadu, Chit Mela, Folk Songs, Veeragase, Bolakkat, etc.

Rangayana Deputy Director Nirmala Mathapati , Janapadotsava Convenor Geetha Montadka and  Bahuroopi-2022 Convenor Jagdish Manavarthe were present at the event.

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