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The German Connect

With the ongoing Indo-German Urban Mela drawing crowds,Germany certainly seems to be the flavour of the season.

Written by VIDYA PRABHU | Published: April 17, 2012 2:34:37 am

With the ongoing Indo-German Urban Mela drawing crowds,

Germany certainly seems to be the flavour of the season. The extravaganza — that commemorates 60 years of the establishment of Indo-German diplomatic ties — combines elements of the typical Indian mela and the German carnival. The mela’s highlights include: Parada Narrnia,a fairy tale parade on stilts by theatre group Grotest Maru from Berlin,short film screenings and puppet workshops,Beergarden (a replica of the German Biergarten,an important social space where friends and family interact),a music festival called A Silent Disco and the Indo-German Hip Hop & Urban Culture Week.

Marla Stukenberg,Director,Max Mueller Bhavan,Mumbai,says that the event will open up new insights into German life. “Germany is more than just about cars and big global companies. Through this event,people will also get information about German literature,culture and entertainment,” says Stukenberg.

The Hip Hop Week,for one,holds a lot of promise as it is one of the biggest and most inclusive gatherings of hip hop practitioners from India and Germany (with a dash of Japan). The outcome of a partnership with music consultancy company Soundcurry,music production academy Start from Scratch and hip hop centre Tiny Drops,the initiative will see b-boying workshops and jams,mural paintings and DJ gigs taking place throughout the week at the city’s Cross Maidan.

The event will also feature top graffiti writers Zebster,Shiro,Kayo and Seagal Gold; local Indian graffiti artists like Zine and Crym from Delhi; B-girl Frosty and B-boy Stok La Rock and also the winners of several b-boy championships in Germany.

Noted German hip hop artist Akim Walta,who is at the helm of the project,emphasises that the idea is to create a hip hop culture in the country which is ‘democratic,inclusive and sustainable in the long run’. “The b-boy scene in India is growing by the day. The Hip Hop Week in Mumbai,with its international guests,plus the follow-up projects in Ujjain,Indore and Kolkata,will help spread greater awareness about this culture,” he says.

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