Sunday, March 10, 2013

Jaffna Music Festival: A Celebration of Musical Expressions

          Text and Photos By Dushiyanthini Kanagasabapathipillai

 A rare treat for festival audience ~ Pushparani Thiruchelvam (Thavil) and Rajeswary Suntharalingam (Naathaswaram)  playing  at Jaffna Music Festival

Jaffna Music Festival brought in a bursting combination of vibrant music, colour and culture. The second Jaffna Music Festival was recently held at the Jaffna Municipal grounds. Local and international musical groups performed at the Jaffna Music Festival. This year's music festival included contemporary music, classical music and folk music.

Jaffna Music Festival has provided the much needed meeting place for local and international artistes to share, exchange, fuse and interact with each other. Also, artistes and audience had an opportunity to experience and interact, and were introduced to a diverse array of musical genres. Recently revived northern folk groups from Mulliyawalai in Mullaithivu District had an opportunity to showcase their unique heritage.

The Jaffna Music Festival 2013 was organized by Sewalanka in collaboration with Rikskonsertene (Concerts Norway) and Aru Sri Art Theatre and was funded by the Royal Norwegian Embassy and the United States Agency for International Development (USAID).
Traditional welcoming wooden arch at the main entrance
Traditional welcome at the festival
Magnificent sunset in Jaffna
At the man entrance of the venue
Parai Mela Kooththu (Mulliyawalai, Mullaithivu District, Sri Lanka)
Festival goer got captivated by the beats of Mulliyawalai drummers
Festive and fervour around the venue 

 Blessed Parai drum from Vattraappalai, Mullaithivu District

 Behind the Scene: Bangladesh dancer Sudeshna Swayamprabha getting ready to perform at Jaffna Music Festival

 "Thavil" and "Naathaswaram" players for the inuguration
Jaffna Mayoress Yogeswary patkunarajah, Minister of Traditional Industries and Small Enterprise Douglas Devananda, Jaffna Security Forces Commander Major General Mahinda Hathurusinghe and Northern Province Governor G.A.Chandrsri are being traditional welcomed to the Jaffna Music Festival 

 Scene at the inauguration of Jaffna Music Festival

Dignitaries at the opening ceremony 

 School children attending the inauguration

 Security tightened during the inauguration
Jaffna Security Forces Commander Major General Mahinda Hathurusinghe, Minister of Traditional Industries and Small Enterprise Doulas Devananda and Northern Province Governor G.A.Chandrsri at the inauguration of Jaffna Music Festival
Clergymen at the inauguration 

Commando on duty during the inauguration

Strong winds prevented the flames from flickering

 James F. Bednar, Mission Director, USAID and Tammie Harris, Country Director, USAID/Office of Transition Initiatives
 "Vezham Paduththa Veerankanai (Mulliyawalai, Mullaithivu District, Sri Lanka

 Sprinkling water at the venue

 Mother and Daughter ~ Manipuri dance by Nritya Nandan (Sharmila Banerjee (Mother) and Sudeshna Swayamprabha (Daughter)) (Bangladesh)

Camphor in claypot during a folk music and dance performnace

 Sabreen Association (Palestine)

 Festival goers at dusk
Chirkutt (Bangladesh)
Traditions meet
Oil lamp to decorate the festival 

 Ranwala Brigade (Sri Lanka)
Students of Sivananda Vidyalayam from Batticaloa performing "Villuppaatu" at Children's Corner
Festival goers at night
Collaborative Dance Performance (Nirtya Nandan (Bangladesh), Hat Trick and Fiddle (Norway) and Aru Sri Art Theatre (Sri Lanka))
School kids at the inauguration
Pakkeer Baith (Amapara, Sri Lanka)
Casa Murilo (Norway) 

 Festival at midnight

 Golden sunset reflects on Pannai Causeway water
Phoolan Devi Opera (Sri Lanka)
Ila Arun Troupe (India)
Naadro (SriLanka)
Pappiravaahan Kooththu (Chulipram,Jaffna,Sri Lanka) 

 Festival flags to flatter with strong winds
Lights around the venue
Audience dancing at Jaffna Music Festival
Harmonia Do Brasil

 Ritual songs of Batticaloa

Marai Kaththa Maaveerar (Paasaiyoor, Jaffna, Sri Lanka)

 Traditional decorations at Yarl Food restaurant at the festival site

Crows on wire at dusk

 Beautiful sunset over Pannai Causeway in Jaffna

 Fringe Event ~ Naattukkooththu performed by the children from Mannar at children's corner

Festival view at night

 Jaffna's popular "Rio Ice Cream" to quench thirst during the festival

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