First of all thanks to Bubai, Saikat, Sujit-da, Arijit and others who have tried effortlessly to raise funds for cultural programs and we're delighted to announce that the response has been just awesome - we'll surely exceed our expectation. Also I'd like to thank all of you who'd given us the confidence in going ahead with our plan even when we're not sure about the financing.
- We're having Raghab (Navami) and Krosswindz (Ashtami) - two of the most reputed and loved performers from Calcutta.
- We've Srabani Sen on Ashtami
- We've Friends of Fusion on Saptami
- Our own Aurko is on Dashami
We'e still working on getting something jazzy on panchami - let that be a surprise.
Apart from this there are the usual in-house programs:
- Sarathi Choir - Shashti
- Dance directed by Ujjoini - Navami
- Kohal - Saptami
- Kids' Events: Boogie-Woogie, Recitation competition, Drawing competition - during day times
- Youth Event: Antakshari
Some special events are
- Chandalika (Shashthi)
- Meeting the crew of Autograph on the eve of the film's Bangalore release (Ashtami)
- Compositions of Ali Akbar Khan presented by his own grandson (Panchami)
(Busy people may hang up now)
Now some more details.
About media coverage
There have been comparisons with the media coverage some other Durga Puja is getting. It's really commendable that someone is doing it in a big way and getting all the media coverage but I'd like to iterate the point that we're doing this event for a social cause and that holds good even if we're not putting up a gallery for Kuvempu and Girish Karnad or not calling Shan and Hariprasad Chaurasia. For thousands of years the festivals of India have been efficient and fast vehicles and distribution channels to distribute wealth to a wide range of people - out of the 18-20L we're spending we're paying only 1.5L as remuneration to artistes and the entire remaining amount is being spent on services, logistics, infrastructure, food etc, all of which are essential commodities in India's economy. There are very few other channels where such a big amount of money percolates down from the relatively upper levels. If any corporate compares us with any other Association please bring this up. Spending 15L on Shan doesn't add any penny to the economically striving people, but spending 18L entirely on logistics, food and services - what we do - add much more to India's economy.
Also there are talks that what we're doing to celebrate Tagore's 150th birth anniversary. Well, anyone who have read Tagore properly and loves him would like to celebrate his birthday not by singing his songs on one particular day. More important is to follow his footsteps and realizing his dreams of a literate, aware, fearless and a healthy society. If anyone wants to say that someone else is doing more than us to celebrate Tagore's 150th birth day please let them know that we don't believe in celebrating his birthday only once a year - we is within us every day, in every function we organize and everything we do.
All of you're brand ambassadors of Sarathi and hence I felt you should have enough ammunition to fight against anyone who points out something negative about us.
About the crew of Autograph
Sarathi has many connections with the movie. Our beloved Priyam was the assistant music director of the movie and the movie has been dedicated to him. More over one of the songs has been sung by Saptarshi, who has performed for Sarathi quite a few times in the past - he was a part of Kohal. The director, Riju (Srijit Mukherjee) organized the Antakshari last year for Sarathi.
Here we need some help. Please do whatever you can do to flood the web with anything and everything about Sarathi. If you need material please contact me. If anyone searches for Durga Puja in Bangalore in google, ours should come in the top five listings - that's what should be our target.
We've a blog site - it's http://sarathionline.blogspot.com/, please go there and hundred times everyday and write something in the comments section - that will increase our visibility in google's search engine.
That's it for now.