As part of the Diamond Jubilee celebrations, SPIC MACAY NITW Chapter, conducted ‘VIRASAT’, a cultural festival comprising of concerts and performances by India’s distinguished artists in classical music, dance, folk arts, and theatre which was held from October 8th-13th in the old auditorium, and the recently inaugurated B.R. Ambedkar Hall.

The first day of Virasat witnessed a divine Mohan Veena (slide guitar) performance by the renowned Grammy-winning Hindustani classical music instrumentalist, Pt. Vishwamohan Bhatt. The legend is generally known for fusion and pan-cultural collaborations with western artists. He was awarded the Padma Shri back in the year 2002, and Padma Bhushan in 2017. The highlight of the evening was when he performed his Grammy award-winning piece, A meeting by the river.

The second day was led by the Hindustani classical music vocalist, Smt. Manjusha Kulkarni-Patil, who moved the audience with her Sargam – the act of singing notes instead of the words of a composition. The artist, who is well known for Kayal form of Hindustani music also excels in semi-classical musical forms like Thumari, Bhajan, and Natya-Sangeet.

The third day saw a theatrical play by Naya Theatre, the brainchild of Habib Tanvir and his wife Moneeka Misra, and is comprised of regular Nacha artists from his home state of Chattisgarh; who are skilled performers of physical nacha style in Naya Theatre’s productions of Shakespeare, Brecht and Sanskrit classics, as well as fresh interventionist plays written by Habib Saab. Naya Theatre performed the ever famous Charandas Chor as a tribute to the late Habib Tanvir, enrapturing the packed auditorium.

The fourth day had an interactive symposium with the founder of SPIC MACAY, Padma Shri winner, Dr. Kiran Seth, an emeritus professor of IIT Delhi, who is also a member of several committees and boards, including the Central Advisory Board of Education, General Council of the Indian Council for Cultural Relations (ICCR), Executive Board of the Sangeet Natak Academi, and Advisory Board (Education) of the Kendriya Vidyalaya Sangathan. The interactive symposium was followed by a performance by Smt. Rama Vaidhyanathan, an exceptional Bharatnatyam artist who left the audience with not just a sense of visual satisfaction, but also spiritual fulfillment. Her expression-rich dances along with perfect synchronization of Sudha Raghuraman’s voice had the audience enraptured.

The fifth day showcased an evening of pristine Carnatic music by Sikkil C. Gurucharan, who is, one among the foremost young performing vocal musicians of Carnatic music in India today. He is featured in India Today’s “35 game changers under age of 35”. The evening was made memorable as Mr. Gurucharan sang various ragas of Carnatic music at the request of the audience.

The final day of Virasat concluded with the Ghatam artist, Vidwan T. H. Vikku Vinayakram, the Grammy Award-winning Indian percussionist. He plays Carnatic music with the Ghatam, an earthen pot, and has also been conferred with Padma Shri and Padma Bhushan awards as a testament to his musical skills.

Virasat, by SPIC MACAY NITW Chapter, hosted some of the exceptional artists of this generation, and provided an opportunity to the NIT Warangal community, to witness their mesmerizing performances. The six-day long cultural festival was well received with packed auditoriums, and positive reviews from numerous students and faculty members.

“It has been a great experience having conducted a fest under SPIC MACAY banner, that too the first one in 34 years of presence of this movement in NITW. Personally, as a General Secretary, I feel honored to have made an event of such magnitude a huge success, and as an Indian I feel blessed to have met these stalwarts of Indian classical music and dance in person, and now I’m more than just motivated to carry forward this legacy of Indian heritage for years to come.”

-Gaurav Malik, General Secretary, SPIC MACAY NITW Chapter.