Shillong Chamber Choir to open Jaipur lit fest

New Delhi, Jan 13 (IANS) As a whirlwind of literary heavyweights prepare to descend on the ZEE Jaipur Literature Festival, like every year, an eclectic mix of music artists are also set to perform during the mornings and late evenings at the five-day extravaganza.

Opening the festival at Diggi Palace on January 19 will be the Shillong Chamber Choir, event organiser Teamwork Arts said.

Founded in 2001, the multi-genre choir won reality TV show India’s Got Talent in 2010 amd in the same year picked up three gold medals at the 6th World Choir Games. Its wide repertoire from Western classical favourites to rock hits and Khasi folk music and opera has seen them perform across India, including for US President Barack Obama and Michelle Obama during their state visit to India.

Following the choir’s appearance, master drummer of Rajasthan Nathoo Lal Solanki will perform at the inauguration ceremony.

The second day of the festival, January 20, will open with ecstatic performances by Swanand Kirikire and Ankur Tiwari.

Swanand Kirkire is a lyricist, actor, playback singer, scriptwriter and assistant director for Hindi television, films and theatre. He has written songs for more than 50 films and is a two-time winner of the National Award for Best Lyrics. He received his first Award in 2007 for the song “Bande Me Tha Dum…Vande Mataram” from “Lage Raho Munna Bhai” and the second in 2009 for “Behti Hawaa Sa Tha WohÂ…” from “3 Idiots”.

Tewari, a member of The Ghalat Family band, is also a well-known Bollywood lyricist and composer.

On the morning on January 21, festival-goers can enjoy a performance of Padmini Rao, an accomplished exponent of the Kirana Gharana of North Indian classical music.

Devashish Dey will awaken the crowds on January 22 and set the tone for the day ahead. A classical singer who specialises in thumri, dadra, tappa, chaiti and kazri styles and sings bhajans too, Dey has performed widely across India and the UK and released many albums.

On the last day of the Festival, January 23, “East Meets Middle East,” a musical collective spanning continents and celebrating the rich traditions of the Middle East and South Asia kicks off a lively day of literature celebration. The group transcends boundaries as it moves through raga and maqam, tala and iga music and rhythms found in South Asia, the Middle East and North Africa.

Music also features in the Heritage Evenings presented in partnership with Rajasthan Tourism. Bringing together arts and culture with built heritage, two mesmerising Heritage Evenings at the magnificent Amber Fort and the spectacular Hawa Mahal will run parallel to the Festival on the evenings of January 20 and 21.

Besides the festival will also feature ticketed “Musical evenings” (Rs 400 per day or Rs 1,200 for all 4 days) at Clarks Amer in Jaipur. Leading bands set to perform in this segment include Rajasthan Josh, Bombay Bassment, Soulmate, Aga Khan Music Initiative Ensembl and The Raghu Dixit Project.