In collaboration with Sahachari Foundation Events
Manganiyar is a community of hereditary professional musicians from Rajasthan. For generations now, their music has been supported by wealthy landlords and patrons. Their songs are passed on from generation to generation as a form of oral history of the desert which they inhabit.
Directed by Roysten Abel, an internationally renowned director, Manganiyar Classroom features thirty-five children of the Manganiyar community from the villages of Rajasthan. This unusual production is not just an attempt at introducing the glorious musical reserves of this community but also a kind of activism. In this one-hour performance, the Manganiyar children stun the audience with their talent – each of them a repository of song, dance and rhythm.
However, at the end of the performance, there is a painful realisation of an India that is not so shining but left far behind, and how these carriers of a great tradition are doomed to remain just that, forgotten to be included in the programs of ‘progress’. Their vibrant folk music legacy is on the verge of extinction due to India’s rapid modernization.