Shakti Caravan and Big Medicine Charitable Trust (BMCT) launched the second annual Mewar Shakti Fest, a local/global celebration of peace, art and the environment. Hundreds of Udaipurites and foreign visitors gathered in Chandpole’s Naga Nagri to welcome the Makar Sankranti Hindu solstice and support creation of the Shaktipur eco-artistic complex around Pichola’s Maharajah Ghat.
Festivities began with the lively dedication of west India’s first International Peace Pole, (inscribed with “May Peace Prevail on Earth” in Mewari, Urdu, Japanese and English).
Chief guest Collector Rohit Gupta then offered his blessing to Shaktipur supporters and received a plaque honouring Udaipur from New York’s Ulster legislature for helping lead the way in Indo-American artistic exchange
Featured performers included the Vanaver Caravan music & dance ensemble, Bharat Verma’s Heartbeators, Nagara master Gotu Solanki, Riverdance star Joel Hanna, Sensei Raj Menaria’s mixed martial artists, percussion poet Neeraj Mistry, rapper/bard Ashok Jain Manthan, Kiran Menaria’s kathak devis, singer/songwriter Tapu Vyas, and young break-dance sensation Nihal Paliwal.
The enthused diverse audience sat rapt throughout the afternoon performances and then joined together in the rousing twilight dances.
Udaipur Shakti Sunday originator BMCT also invited its eco-activist partners – Millets of Mewar, Eco Hut, Jaisamand Organics, and Shikshantar’s Swaraj University – to highlight their inspirational work and Shaktipur’s environmental objectives.
In the words of BMCT founder-trustee Rita Dixit-Kubiak, “Today’s Shakti Fest artistry was marvelous, and we are deeply grateful to all the performers. We also want to express special thanks both to Collector Gupta for his encouragement and to Mr. Raju Kabra and Divya Udaipur’s Divyesh Choubisa for many years of priceless support and assistance.”
When completed Shaktipur and its Shakti Academy of Performing & Healing Arts will offer India’s first integrated centre for creative eco-cultural technology exchange with inspiring schools, performance spaces and international artist/eco-activist residencies.
The Shaktipur project team continues to seek new creative partners & sponsors and invites proposals and conversations via firstname.lastname@example.org.