NID today

the unofficial blog on news, events, happenings @ National Institute of Design, India

Archive for Cultural happenings

British Council announces YCE 2010

The British Council invites young Indian entrepreneurs between 25 – 35 years of age and working in the creative sectors to apply for the YCE Awards. The Indian winner gets an opportunity to attend a study tour to UK, attend a trade event and interact with peers and industry leaders. In addition, all the shortlisted finalists will be eligible to apply for a grant of up to INR 3 lacs for a collaborative project with the UK.

For further details, eligibility criteria and application form, log on to or email at

Closing date of applications: 10 July 2010


Siddis perform at Amphi, NID

A group of people from the ‘Siddi’ Community (people of *African* origin) of Ahmedabad performed ‘Sufi’ music and their traditional dance on the 2nd at the amphitheatre. This was preceded by a short documentary film about the Siddi people: ‘People of Music’, by Tara Mishra. The Siddi population in India is currently estimated to be 20,000-55,000, with Gujarat state of India being the main population center.

The first Siddis are thought to have arrived in the Indian subcontinent in 628CE at the Bharuch port. Most Siddis, are believed to be the descendants of slaves, sailors, servants and merchants from the Bantu-speaking parts of East Africa who arrived and became resident in the subcontinent during the 1200-1900CE period. A large influx of Siddis to the region occurred in the 17th century when Portuguese slave traders sold a number of them to local princes.

Although Gujarati Siddis have adopted the language and many customs of their surrounding populations, some African traditions have been preserved. These
include the Goma music and dance form, which is sometimes called Dhamal. The term is believed to be derived from the goma drumming and dance forms of East Africa. The Goma also has a spiritual significance and, at the climax of the dance, some dancers are believed to be vehicles for the presence of Siddi saints of the past.

Crackling holi on campus!


If the screams were to be believed, everyone had a rollicking time on Holi yesterday. I conveniently hid in my house, and grabbed this image from the unsecure :). Credit to the unknown photographer !

Holi hai !

French Cultural day Video – amazing music!

Folks, a little late in the day. I was travelling and hence the small delay.

Nonetheless, take a look at the video of the French Cultural day celebrations at Amphi, NID. 4 blokes kept us enthralled with foot tapping music for the best part of 2 hours. I couldn’t understand a word beyond the merci and Oui, but sweet mama, the music hit home. Supported by the french students on campus, it was a fun filled evening with crepes, music and dance.

The final dance was fun, subtly called the ‘french garba’ ; it was more of a boisterous free for all – the kind of the final frames in all Asterix and Obelix comics!

Have fun with the video.

Au revoir!

Andhayug – brilliant premiere!

Folks, I am not a big theatre buff, but I stand corrected today. A brilliant performance by Khel @ amphi, NID, performing Andha Yug, a politico-philosophical commentary with the Mahabharata as its setting. Kudos to the entire team and a big thanks to Tom Alter who put in a cameo as the blind monarch, Dritharashtra.

3 days to go for premiere of Andhayug – by Vivek Sheth

ViAndha Yug was written by Dharamvir Bharati in 1953 as a radio play. Theatre lovers says that Satyadev Dubey ‘discovered’ it and decided that it needed to be seen as well as heard and so, he created its first stage production in 1961. But more than Dubey’s espousal, it was Ebrahim Alkazi’s dramatic NSD productions in the later 1960s, on the ramparts of Purana Quila, that placed this momentous play on the national stage. It has remained a constant in the imagination of the theatre community since then and is acknowledged as the first modern play of India, dealing as it does with fratricidal violence, war, the loss of faith and despair. Acts of violence and despair have remained our companions in the 50 years since the play was written and so, sadly, Andha Yug remains perpetually relevant to our life and times.

Dharamvir Bharati uses the Mahabharata and its characters to explore what happens to human beings when they participate in violence and as they seek a moral centre from which to act. The play opens on the 17th day of the great war, with Gandhari and Dhritarashtra anticipating a Kaurava victory. That is not to be and as it becomes clear that the Kauravas are being decimated, the losing side begins to deal with its pain and anger. Vidura and Sanjaya are no support to the aging king and queen, having always felt that the Pandavas were in the right. Yuyutsu, the Kaurava who chose to fight on the side of the ‘righteous’ Pandavas against his family, is scorned and  mocked by his own people. Kripacharya and Kritavarma side with Ashwatthama who is about to unleash his deadly revenge on the survivors in the Pandava camp. Everyone looks to the absent Krishna for guidance, for help, for a way to understand what has just happened. Gandhari’s bitter anger turns into a curse, Ashawatthama will not go unpunished and Yudhishtira will be left to mourn his pyrrhic victory.
-by Arshia Sattar (director, of the play)

As we move in closer to the day we break the stage to perform this play, excitement, tension and all the action begins. Production crew running here and there to get things fixed, actors getting into shape, to getting the Que sheets prepared work just keeps on rising! But all of this with an element of amazing fun and laughter and shouts of GO KHEL! that reverb around the Amphi, maybe disturbing the faculty sleeping in their residences (well really sorry for that!). As the excitement rises and tries to settle we will bring more information and news on what is happening on its front.

well 3 days to go!!!
@ NID , Amphitheater on 20th february, 2010 ,8:00 PM onwards (open for all NID community)
@NATRANI, on 21st february, 2010, 8:30 PM onwards (by invitation only)
duration:100 minutes
language: hindi/english

Kshitish Purohit rocks!