Kalaa Utsavam – Indian Festival of Arts is an annual festival that celebrates Indian arts during the festive period of Deepavali.
Amidst an unexpected and sweeping pandemic, we hold on to hope. Here is where I truly believe the arts has the magnitude to build resilience and vigour in difficult times, connect mankind closer to the beauty of nature and reaffirm the positivity of life in all its permutations. Hence the key visual of Kalaa Utsavam – Indian Festival of Arts this year is inspired by the concept of the Tree of Life, which symbolises new beginnings, positive energy, good health, wisdom and a bright future.
In this 19th edition of Kalaa Utsavam, we throw the spotlight on the local Indian arts that has shaped Singapore's cultural and arts scene in more ways than one. The festival highlights include three digital premieres: Amara – Dancing Stories of Banteay Srei by Apsaras Arts; Pallavi through Abstractions by Chowk Productions and Pathey Nimidam – 10-minute Tamil plays in collaboration with RDG. Look out for an array of free digital programmes, our annual Chakra-thon hindustani music performances by prominent artists from India, Stories for Solving specially for families, and podcast conversations with Zakir Hussain, Leela Samson, Arundhati Nag, Atul Kumar, Devdutt Pattanaik and Singapore artist Md Raffee.
While we hope that the vibrance of Singapore's arts scene will return soon in all its splendour, we are delighted to showcase a festival line-up that includes newly recorded works, archival screenings and livestreamed performances. Following government announcements that live performances can resume from 1 Nov with the appropriate regulations in place, we are also pleased to welcome audiences back at Esplanade with live shows during Kalaa Utsavam. We invite everyone to immerse yourselves in this uplifting atmosphere from 20 to 29 Nov and hope that the offerings this year, bring back the magical moments of experiencing the diversity of the Indian performing arts, once again.