India ranks among the most culturally rich and sophisticated countries of the world. Since ancient times, performing arts – whether music, dance or ritual theatre – have played a central role in religious life, as well as that of the royal courts and local villages. Many forms are fast disappearing, but an extraordinary wealth of arts survive throughout India.
In Rajasthan, cultural recitals are often staged against a backdrop of flamboyant Rajput domes and pavilions in the palace or haveli courtyard – the perfect setting for the swirling, sparkling dances of Kalmelia dancers, or the haunting desert songs of the Manganiyar gypsies. In Lucknow, you might see Kathak dances such as those that tantalized the sybaritic Kings of Avadh. In Kerala, it could be elaborately costumed Kathakali or graceful Mohiniyattam dance, with performers decked in brocaded silk.
Opportunities to see such riches in their authentic contexts – in local temples, shrines and stately homes – may be rarer, but can occasionally be arranged. If so, our consultants will know about them and how to make all the necessary arrangements on your behalf.