Rajasthan – the land of royalty – a glittering jewel set in the golden sands of the barren Thar Desert, with a wealth of rich culture, tradition and heritage.
The Rajasthan Heritage Brass Band is a living embodiment of this landscape, a spectacular celebration of its vibrant and colourful lifestyle, their music and dance a heady, exciting and hypnotic reflection of this enchanting region.
Whilst the name may be new many will recognise some familiar faces from our old friends in other Rajasthani brass bands but this is much more than a simple reincarnation. With a diverse repertoire spanning Rajasthani folk songs, Bollywood hits, spiritual qawwali and Bhangra beats these ten vividly costumed artists cover the full spectrum of the evocative and joyous music that governs life in Rajasthan.
Eight musicians from the villages surrounding Jaipur, Rajasthan’s renowned “Pink City”, make up the brass core of this rousing new ensemble on trumpet, saxophone, tuba, sousaphone and trombone, supplemented with clarinet and keyboard against an insistent background of percussion on side, bass and dhol drums.
Dancing to this uplifting music is unavoidable and is represented in two unique styles – Kalbelia, or Sapera, and Bollywood. The Kalbelia are nomadic snake charmers with the traditionally dressed and bejewelled dancers mirroring the sinuous movements of the cobra. In complete contrast, a quick change of costume and musical line-up later we are suddenly transported to Bollywood.
Completing the scene are the gravity-defying, eye-watering, mesmerising feats of the amazing fakir. All will be revealed, complete with a warning for the squeamish and faint-hearted and instructions not to try doing this at home – sometimes seeing is NOT believing!