At the first afternoon concert held in the Batha Museum garden, the young boys from Raghurajput Heritage Village in Orissa, India, held the audience spellbound.
Accompanied by three excellent musicians/vocalists on tabla, violin and harmonium, the Gotipuas performed to perfection their dances and acrobatics dedicated to Krishna. Incense wafted across the garden that was packed to capacity.
In this tradition, the postures of ancient temple sculptures are reproduced, and such dance and acrobatics are sacred. The boys are dressed and made up as girls (a fact lost on many in the audience), as it's believed that a feminine body can get closer to God, and is also a reflection of the androgyny of the divine. In their final act, the dancers formed a pyramid that symbolises man's elevation towards heaven.
New at the Museum was the innovative - and almost invisible - shade cloth across the auditorium - an effective counter to a fierce sun.
As we mentioned, it was a capacity crowd. Below are a few of the visitors who enjoyed the concert. (click on all images to enlarge!)
International Peace Artist from Malawi, Mashankho Banda
British visitor, Chris Gilchrist
Diane Morningstar from Nashville, USA
Mark Kemp - our man from Rolling Stone USA
Abdelhak Azzouzi Fez Festival Director General
The Honourable Vic Ecclestone MBE, director of The World in Winter Festival in Bristol in the UK, speaking with Helen Ranger of The View from Fez.
Fes Festival Artistic Director Alain Werber
For The View from Fez. Reporting; Helen Ranger, Photographs Sandy McCutcheon
To see all the Fez Festival 2010 stories on The View from Fez, click HERE!