Hindustani, a harmonious mix of Urdu and Hindi, will be celebrated in the works and words of poets, writers, historians, actors and musicians at the sixth edition of Jashn-e-Adab, a three-day festival to be held at Indira Gandhi National Centre for Arts in Delhi on October 27.
“When we started in 2012, there weren’t many literature festivals. We realised that there were youngsters who were talented, but lacked experience, and the only options for them were the old-school mushairas and government-sponsored seminars. We decided to take Urdu poetry and literature to the youngsters,” said Kunwar Ranjeet Chauhan, General-Secretary of the Jashn-e-Adab Foundation.
Mushairas, generally dominated by elderly men, gets a gender turn, with a special mushaira for women, on Saturday. There will be one for the youth on Sunday. Lyricists Irshad Kamil and Manoj Muntashir will have a conversation with director Neeraj Pandey and actor Sanjay Mishra about poetry in Indian cinema. On Sunday, filmmakers Muzzafar Ali and Anusha Rizvi will look into the role of “Art and Commerce in Cinema” with theatre director Raj Bisaria.
In a session, titled Afsana Padh Rahi Hun, radio jockey Sayema Rehman will read stories by noted Urdu writers Saadat Hassan Manto, Premchand and Ismat Chugtai. In other panel discussions, nuances of Urdu poetry, experts will delve into the recitation and songs from the interiors. There are musical performances, such as the one to close the festival by the famed qawwal duo Sabri brothers. In “Nadira-o-Nayab”, mother-daughter Nadira and Juhi Babbar will talk to with playwright-actor Sohaila Kapoor.
The festival will also pay tribute to the late film and theatre actor Tom Alter. His son Jamie Alter, Professor Akhtarul Wassey, veteran cricketer Hari Gidwani and playwright Dr M Sayeed Alam will discuss his life and legacy in a session, titled “Ba-Andaz-e-Tom Alter”. The theatre group, The Pierrot’s Troupe, led by Alam, will stage the play Lal Quile ka Akhiri Mushaira, in which Alter had played a stellar role. Jashn-e-Adab will also felicitate artists such as actor Piyush Mishra, singer Ustad Ghulam Mustafa Khan and Prof Ashok Chakradhar.