The ten day annual feast of Indian culture in Singapore came to an end on Sunday. This year 200 artists participated in Kalaa Utsavam and forty presentations showcasing the diversity of Indian culture were made. Connected to India asked leading artists of the festival their views on art and the role of cultural festivals like Kalaa Utsavam.
Pt Vishwa Mohan Bhatt: Classical music, culture and art bring out the human values in listeners all around the world that's why it should be celebrated. Festivals like Kalaa Utsavam all across the world help the classical traditional Indian music get connected to the international audience worldwide.
Raka Maitra, Artistic Director, CHOWK Productions: I think life without art would make no sense. These festivals are very important for small companies like us. That’s what keeps us alive, that’s what keeps small companies like us alive.
Mohamed Noor, Percussionist: Art plays a very important part in the human mind. It’s all about emotions and feelings. It’s good if we can share it even in the most simplest forms. I think it is necessary. It’s (Kalaa Utsavam) great because you get to see them live. You get to meet the artists, speak to them about music, exchange ideas and it’s a wonderful thing to have musicians collaborating with each other.
Aravinth Kumarasamy, Creative & Managing Director, Apsaras Arts: Art means to transform you to other places and take you to other experiences. Kalaa Utsavam is very critical to Singapore because it gives a platform to showcase the best. Not best from just Singapore, but best from all around the world and all genres of Indian art. It is also critical because it aspires artistes to be the best.
Kapila Venu, Dancer: I value and respect immensely any artistic expression that is genuine. I also believe that great art needs to transcend skill and talent and I am often concerned and curious about the quality of the artist as a human being. I think in today's world it is so crucial to communicate and share artistic experiences on an international platform. Singapore is so multi-ethnic and multicultural. There lies the richness and beauty of the land. In today's world deeper understanding of each other's aesthetics and values goes a long way in making the world a more tolerant, rich and peaceful place.