Celebrate World Poetry Day at this South-Indian themed pub in Mumbai

By  Krutika Behrawala | Posted  21-Mar-2017

Celebrate World Poetry Day with a diverse set of talented artistes, who will recite original works in Hindi and Urdu at a South-Indian themed pub in Khar

Manoj Muntashir (centre) narrates a verse to artistes (from left) Tanushree Upadhayay, Priya Ramnathan, Sushant Sharma, Neelam Muntashir, Neeraj Sachdeva, Mustafa Siddique, Jatin Dua and Thakur. Pics/Sameer markande
Manoj Muntashir (centre) narrates a verse to artistes (from left) Tanushree Upadhayay, Priya Ramnathan, Sushant Sharma, Neelam Muntashir, Neeraj Sachdeva, Mustafa Siddique, Jatin Dua and Thakur. Pics/Sameer markande

Though he began performing traditional Urdu poetry only in 2014, 81-year-old retired Indian Air Force personnel Dalip Singh Thakur's love for the written word dates back to 1953, when he was a student at the Government College of Ropar in Punjab. "The college would organise ghazal evenings known as mushairas on an all-India scale.

Though I never participated, I was a dedicated audience member, trying to grasp every word of recited poetry and then, storing them in my diaries," reminisces Thakur, whose inspirations include Faiz Ahmad Faiz and Ghalib. This evening, he will share his Urdu poetry along with nine other budding and established poets at a session titled Poetry Musings, hosted by SamBar Pub & Kitchen in Khar to celebrate World Poetry Day.

Dalip Singh Thakur
Dalip Singh Thakur

The event has been curated by Irshaad, a platform launched by Thakur's daughter Vaneeta Sridhar in 2014, where poets are invited to share their writings, primarily in Hindi and Urdu. The audience will be able to soak in works revolving around life, relationships, love and even adoption. "There is no fixed theme. The selection criteria were expression, enthusiasm and emotion. Each poet will get a minimum of 10 and a maximum of 20 minutes to perform," shares Sridhar.

Manoj Muntashir
Manoj Muntashir

Performing artiste Sridhar Rajagopalan, Vaneeta Sridhar and Barkha Thakur from Irshaad
Performing artiste Sridhar Rajagopalan, Vaneeta Sridhar and Barkha Thakur from Irshaad

The diverse line-up includes 25-year-old video content producer Tanushree Upadhayay, nutritionist Neelam Muntashir and scriptwriter-lyricist Manoj Muntashir, known for the award-winning tracks, Galliyan (Ek Villain) and Tere Sang Yaara (Rustom). "In the past decade, poetry has lost many patrons, but that's limited to the written word. We don't have too many readers now. Other forms through which poetry is consumed - cinema and independent music - are thriving. Commercial writing is necessary to pave the way for non-commercial one. I could attract focus on my literary work only after gaining popularity for my Hindi film songs," he shares.

Performing artiste Vishesh Sharma
Performing artiste Vishesh Sharma

Pub owner Pragnesh Rai is hopeful that the event will draw in younger audience too. As Upadhayay, who makes her debut here, observes, "As a millennial, I feel that my generation is not privileged enough. Though we do have the web to post our poetry and read works from around the world, we have not witnessed many mushairas. Such events keep our culture alive."

ON: Tonight, 7 pm to 8.30 pm
AT: Vora Building, opposite Khar Education Society, Khar (W).
CALL: 9820907212