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Bali to host Indian festival
November 2nd, 2009

The Indian Cultural Center (ICC) Bali will organize an Indian art and cultural festival in a number of the island’s regencies to promote inter-social and cultural dialogue between India and Bali.

Bhuvneshwar Sharma, Deputy Director ICC Bali, said the event , Festival of India, would be accompanied by similar events in Jakarta, Bandung, Medan, Pekanbaru, Yogyakarta, Surabaya, and Mataram in Lombok, West Nusa Tenggara.

“The festival’s tagline is friendship through culture,” Sharma said.

In Bali, it will be held in Denpasar, Ubud and Singapadu in Gianyar, Karangasem and Klungkung from Nov. 1 through Dec. 11.

The festival of India is organized by the Embassy of India and supported by The Indian Council for Cultural Relations and the Indian government’s cultural and tourism departments.

As many as 90 professional dancers from India will perform at 12 places across Bali, starting with an launch event at Puri (Palace) Saraswati in Ubud on Nov. 3. The performances will include two Indian classical dances, Manganiars and Kathak.

The famous Barathanatyam dance will be staged at Denpasar Art Center on Nov.3. The festival will continue at Ashram Gandhi at Puri Klungkung, Puri Gede and Ashram Ratu Bagus in Karangasem regency, and Bali Spirit in Ubud.

Agus Indra Udayana, coordinator of Bali-India Friendship, said the festival would feature classical Indian dances and music.

“Most Indian arts and culture were based on the Ramayana and Mahabharata epics, which many Balinese people are familiar with.

“All performances are free of charge. Art lovers can get the tickets at Indian Cultural Center in Denpasar and Ashram Gandhi in Karangasem. “We expect that the Balinese audience will view the festival as a close cultural dialogue between India and Bali.”

The festival also aims to promote relationships between the people of India and Bali in particular, he pointed out.

During a press meeting at the Indian Cultural center in Denpasar on Thursday, Niveditha Parthasarathy, a talented dance teacher performed energetic dance movements taken from Pusphanjali, a classical dance from Taminnadu, South India.

Bali has a similarly named dance, Puspanjali, which is performed to welcome honorable guests.

“In *Pusphanjali* the dancer offers flowers and pays respect to the stage, deity, guru and the audience,” Viveditha said.

“Indian and Balinese dances have similar philosophical grounds, but we have to continue enhance our understanding on each other’s culture and people,” Sharma said.

source Jakarta Post

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