To celebrate the Golden Jubilee of Bangladesh’s independence, the London-based cultural organization Mukto Arts will commemorate the five-day Bhatiali Music Festival. The festival titled “A Week for Bhatiali of Bengal” will feature six essays on Bhatiali music’s heritage written by pioneer researchers and the presentation of Bhatiali songs and social media premiere of a short film blended with live painting music and the legacy of Bhatiali music.
Mr John Biggs, Executive Mayor of the London borough of Tower Hamlet, will inaugurate the Virtual Vatiali Fest, which begins at 4 pm London time on 29th April, in association with the National Lottery Heritage Fund of England. After Mr. Johnbigs’ inaugural address, Dr. Simon Zakaria, one of the leading folk researchers in Bangladesh, will present his article accompanying musical presentation by Musician Pranes Som and Nabarupa Mukherjee.
On the second day of the festival, on 30th April, at 4 pm in London, a social media exhibition of short films based on a story by Bhatiali blended with a live painting by British Bangladeshi artist Mukta Chakraborty.
On the third day of the festival, i.e. 1st May, at 4 pm London time, there will be a presentation of Bhatiali music with two essays by folk music artist and writer Guru Prasad Hom Chowdhury and Humayun Azam Rewaz. There will also be stories and songs about Bhatiali of Bengal by British Bangladeshi young diaspora Shuchismita Maitra Ahna and Barsha Chowdhury. At the end of it all, there will be a performance by Ripon Sarkar, a young Bangladeshi artist from Santiniketan.
On the fourth day of the festival, on 2nd May, at 4 pm London time, there will be a presentation of essays and song-stories written by Sumon Kumar Das, a young folk researcher and writer from Bangladesh. There will also be a musical performance of Bhatiali music by Rishi Chakraborty, a young and famous artist from Kolkata.
On the last day of the festival, 3rd May, at 4 pm London time, there will be a presentation of an essay written by Dr Saidur Rahman, a renowned folk researcher of Bangladesh and Professor of Drama at Dhaka University, as well as the silence of Pranaye Bhatiali music by famous British Bangladeshi musician Amit Dey.
Asim Chakraborty, a founding member of Mukta Arts and Creative Director of the organization, said that Mukta Arts has been working to preserve and present Bangladesh’s cultural heritage since its inception. Earlier, we worked on Manasa Mangal, Boat Boat and Dol Utsav. He further said that Bhatiali is one of the significant aspects of Bangladesh’s cultural heritage, which is disappearing in disregard due to negligence. We want to present the tradition and musical expression of ancient Bhatiali music of Bengal to the outside world through the writings of renowned writers and researchers of Bangladesh and music and painting in London, the city of multilingual world culture.