Sanatkada festival showcases all that is traditional Lakhnavi
The annual handicraft fair Mahindra Sanatkada Lucknow Festival opened on Friday amidst Awadhi fanfare. Besides other features and flavours,there is a lavish display of Awadhi couture,but not essentially tailored for sale.
The traditional Lakhnavi clothing is buried in sandooks (trunks) and I requested family friends and associates to open up the boxes and dig out the heirlooms for display, says Sanatkadas Madhavi Kuckreja,whose annual fair comprising stalls of handicraft from all over the nation opened at the regular venue,Baradari in Qaiserbagh.
The gala opening had ladies doing a catwalk in lehenga,gharara,sharara with zari and tukdi work,apparels dating as far back as to 1960s. Throughout the five-day festival,there will be display of artisans displaying their chikan and zardozi skills,women whipping up Awadhi cuisine and cultural programmes,including a show by Pandwani singer Teejan Bai and Aaj Rang Hai,a musical drama based on the poetry of Amir Khusrau,besides a recital by Birju Maharaj.
From Madhubani paintings from Bihar to ethnic dresses and fabric from Gujarat and from Andhra handicraft and reusable plates made of leaves from Kerala to jams and pickles from Kumaon,there is a lot on display and up for sale.
Thanks to interest shown by corporate houses,it has been possible to present Awadh as a brand,but taking the festival to other places is still a faraway dream, says Kuckreja,who came to Lucknow only six years ago.