Festival & Fair

festival

 

The Songs and Harmony of Joydev Fair

Posted by on Aug 12, 2015 in culture, festival, Music Mania | 0 comments

The Songs and Harmony of Joydev Fair

Every year on Makar Sankranti or Pous Sankranti, which marks the transition of the sun into the zodiac sign of Capricorn a baul song mela is held in Birbhum.Apart from Joydev mela or fair Labhpur in Birbhum district serves as the birthplace of  one of the leading Bengali writers; Tarashankar Bandopadhyay. The fair commemorates the day when Joydev, the poet of Gita Govinda took a bath on that auspicious day at Kadaambokhandi ghat of the Ajay river at Jaydev Kenduli. Thousands of  bauls, a community of wandering minstrels who sings and plays various  instrument including ektara gather on this occasion. As such it is called baul mela or baul fair. Bauls mainly sing devotional songs and it is said that they inherited the legacy of Joydev poems and songs.Well known personalities from Shantiniketan at Bolpur visited this baul fair like Kshiti Mohan Sen, Nandalal Bose, Provat Kumar Mukhopadhyay, Ramkinkar Baij, and Santideb Ghosh visited Jaydev Kenduli and contributed towards the spread of its name and added to its fame. A centuries old tradition is still now retaining its own glory and worth a visit by ever travel...

read more

Bihu

Posted by on Sep 20, 2014 in festival | 0 comments

Bihu

Bihu is the most important and widely acknowledged festival in Assam and is celebrated with joy and abundance by everyone irrespective of caste, creed, religion, faith or belief. There are three Bihus, each one marking a distinct phase of the annual rice-farming calendar and they are held at three different times of the year. The Bihus, Bohag Bihu, Kati Bihu and Magh Bihu, are named according to the months of the Assamese calendar. Bohag or Rongali Bihu, the most important, is celebrated in the middle of April. It marks the Assamese New Year and coincides with the advent of spring and seeding time. Rongali in the Assamese language means colourful so, as the name suggests, this is the most colourful and vibrant of the three Bihus and can continue for several days. Kati or Kongali Bihu, the quietest, is observed rather than celebrated in mid-October. It is held just before the rice is harvested and involves silent prayer in the form of lighting earthern lamps in the paddy fields to ensure the success of the crop. The Assamese word kongali means scarcity or deprivation and the mood of this Bihu is very sober with none of the usual dancing and singing. Magh or Bhogali Bihu is celebrated in the middle of January immediately after harvesting the rice crop with village feasts (bhogali means feasting in Assamese). At Bohag Bihu (which also marks the Assamese new year) and Magh Bihu (the harvest festival) young women dressed in colourful traditional festive costumes woven out of pure muga (silk) dance and are accompanied with wild and lusty beats from the men dressed in dhoti (baggy white pants) with gamuchas (traditional scarves) tied round their foreheads playing the dhol and pepa. The dhol is an essential part of Bihu. It maintains the rhythm and is similar to an Indian drum, played with two sticks and made out of a wooden barrel. The two open ends are covered with animal skin. Tightening or loosening the skin with ropes or nuts and bolts adjusts the pitch. The dhol dates back to the 15th century when it was played during wartime. The pepa, a chunky flute-like instrument, is also played during Bihu. It is made from buffalo horn with a short tapering stem of bamboo, cane or reed as the mouthpiece. The songs are mostly based on the theme of love and often carry erotic overtones. Bihu dances are extremely energetic and feature both young boys and young girls, although they tend to stay in their separate groups. The dances are charactised by brisk steps, stylish footwork, the flinging and waving of hands and the erotic swaying of hips to represent youthful passion. The first phase of Bohag Bihu is dedicated to cattle. They are smeared with mustard oil and then taken to the nearest pond or river for a ceremonial bath. The people, too, take a bath in the river. The first part of the dance consists of Husari Kirtans (religious songs). One man sets the refrain, which is soon picked up by the rest and young men only perform the dance in a circle. Both young men and women take place in all the other Bihu dances where the songs are often love ditties which are sung in couplets and often performed in the fields and under trees. Both men and women play clappers called taka and the dancers form circles, rows and figures of eight (representing the motif of intertwined serpents). During the second...

read more

Holi

Posted by on Sep 20, 2014 in festival | 0 comments

Holi

Holi is a two day festival that also celebrates the victory of good over evil, as well as the abundance of the spring harvest season. It’s commonly referred to as the “Festival of Colors”. People exuberantly throw colored powder and water all over each other, have parties, and dance under water sprinklers.Bhang (a paste made from cannabis plants) is also traditionally consumed during the celebrations. Holi is a very carefree festival that’s great fun to participate in if you don’t mind getting wet and...

read more

Hareli

Posted by on Sep 20, 2014 in festival | 0 comments

Hareli

The tribal states of India, Chhattisgarh celebrate Hareli festival to pray for a good harvest. This is an important harvest festival celebrated in Chhattisgarh and some part of Madhya Pradesh during the holy month of sawan. In this festival farmers worship cow, bullocks and farm equipments, bull race at some part attracts a major crowd. Raja Parva is also a monsoon festival celebrated by women in the state of...

read more

Pongal

Posted by on Sep 20, 2014 in festival | 0 comments

Pongal

India is a land whose primary occupation is agriculture. Changes in season thus play a very important role for Indian farmers. Their lifestyles and celebrations are thus exclusively linked to the seasonal landmarks in an year. There are many Indian festivals which are in tune with a farmers lifestyle and also with the seasonal variations in an year. Pongal, the harvest festival of the southern Indian state of Tamil Nadu is one of them.

read more

Bikaner Camel Fair

Posted by on Sep 20, 2014 in festival | 0 comments

Bikaner Camel Fair

An astonishing 50,000 camels converge on the tiny desert town of Bikaner, in India’s state of Rajasthan for the Bikaner Camel Fair. For five days, the camels are dressed up, paraded, shaved, entered into beauty contests, raced, and of course traded. It’s a great opportunity to witness an old

read more

Kalpataru Utsav

Posted by on Sep 20, 2014 in festival | 0 comments

Kalpataru Utsav

Kalpataru Day also called Kalpataru Diwas or Kalpataru Utsav is an annual religious festival observed by monks of the Ramakrishna Mathmonastic order of Hinduism and lay followers of the associated Ramakrishna Mission, as well as the worldwide Vedanta Societies. These organizations follow the teachings of Ramakrishna, the 19th century Indian mystic and figure in the Hindu Renaissance. The event commemorates the day on January 1, 1886 when his followers believe that Ramakrishna revealed himself to be an Avatar, or Godincarnate on earth. It is held each January 1. Although the observances are held in many locations, the most significant celebration takes place at Cossipore Garden House or Udyanbati near Kolkata (then called Calcutta), present Ramakrishna Math, a branch of Ramakrishna Order, the place where Ramakrishna spent last days of his life. It is classified as one of the “Lord’s special festivals” by followers of Ramakrishna.[1] In India on January 1, 2010, as in other years, “Devotees from all over the country thronged the famed Kali Temple at Dakshineshwar for Kalpataru Utsav, which is celebrated on this day every year.” [2] India’s Eastern Railway scheduled two special trains on January 1, 2010, to carry the crowds to Kali Temple.[3] The event includes providing medical care, blankets and clothing to the...

read more