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talk Volume 1 | Issue 41 | May 23, 2013 | Rs 10

TREND It’s boomtime for the voiceover biz 8

magazine

the intelligent bangalorean’’s must-read weekly

MUSIC Free gig venues, and how they work 16 MOVIES What Bombay Talkies tells us about our directors 18

CHANGING CHANGING

With six spacious microbreweries making and serving varieties of ale, lager and stout, Bangalore is beginning to like the fresh brew. ‘Crafted’ beer is the new wine, sipped at leisure and with the family, reports SANDRA M FERNANDES PLUS: A brewer and a convert on why fresh is better than bottled 10-14

RAMESH HUNSUR

PITCHER


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mail

Thanks for the insightful profiles of Siddaramaiah and Mallikarjuna Kharge Your post-election edition proved more interesting than I had imagined. I don’’t follow politics too closely, but I was fascinated by the profiles you presented of Siddaramaiah and Mallikarjuna Kharge. The two Congressmen provide a study in contrast, as you rightly say. It gives me satisfaction that Siddaramaiah, a gritty antiCongress leader for much of his life, was chosen over the loyal Kharge. If things must change, then Siddaramaiah is a good bet. Thank you, Talk, for providing rare insights into the lives of the two leaders. B Rajaram Brigade Road Foster care issues I read with interest your article on foster homes (For a home and a hug,

Issue 37). I had always thought of foster care as adoption, but the article clarified the difference. Since in foster care the children are not legal heirs, it's good that parents choose how long they want to keep them. Though it doesn't dwell on it, the article also hints at how children are often exploited. Dheparna Das by email Online confessions I happened to read Talk's article on Internet confession groups (I Confess, Issue 35) recently. The article profiles anonymous groups where people say things they don't share even with friends. The social network is the only platform that allows our generation to freely express ourselves. The mystery is the fun part! I approve of such groups as long as nobody gets hurt. Supriya Pradhan by email

team talk EDITORIAL

EXECUTIVE TEAM

SR Ramakrishna Editor Sridhar K Chari Consulting Editor Prashanth GN Senior Editor Sajai Jose Chief Copy Editor Savie Karnel Principal Correspondent Basu Megalkeri Principal Correspondent Prachi Sibal Senior Features Writer Sandra Fernandes and Maria Laveena Reporters and Copy Editors Anand Kumar K Chief of Design Shridhar G Kulkarni Graphic Designer Ramesh Hunsur Senior Photographer Vivek Arun Graphics Artist

Sumith Kombra Founder, CEO and Publisher Kishore Kumar N Head - Circulation Vinayadathan KV Area Manager - Trade Yadhu Kalyani Sr Executive Corporate Sales Lokesh KN Sr Executive Subscriptions Prabhavathi Executive Circulation Sowmya Kombra Asst Process Manager

Printed and published by Sumith Kombra on behalf of Shakthi Media Ventures India Pvt Ltd FF70, Gold Towers, Residency Road, Bangalore -560025 and printed at Lavanya Mudranalaya, Chamarajpet, Bangalore-560018. Editor: SR Ramakrishna. Editorial Office: FF70, Gold Towers, Residency Road, Bangalore 560025 Email: info@talkmag.in Phone: 08040926658. © All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or part without permission is prohibited.

A magazine with taste I am proud to say I am a Talk reader. I read several English publications, but they fail to capture the Kannada idiom and experience the way Talk does. I say this not because of my love of the language.

It is impossible not to feel the many subtle emotions the magazine brings to us. You present Kannada terms in Ayyotoons and simplify complex ideas, presenting everything with refreshing good taste. I wish this style is emulated

by many more journalists. Prof A Sridhara Jayanagar

Write to letters@talkmag.in


around town

talk|23 may 2013|talkmag.in RAMESH HUNSUR

GHUNGHAT TO WHITE Priya (centre) with the five nuns who will be her companions

The bride who turns nun This 27-year-old will break all ties, give up all possessions including her name, to seek salvation. Savie Karnel meets bubbly Priya Kochar, who takes deeksha in a Jain order

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howdiah Bhawan in Hanumanthanagar, was abuzz. Dressed in their finery, cousins sat huddled in corners, sharing family gossip. On the first floor, a young girl dressed in bridal attire sat among her friends and relatives. It was like any other Indian wedding, but here, the girl was not going away with her husband. She was going to give up all worldly pleasures, to become a nun. Priya Kochar (27) was enjoying the last few moments of her worldly life. When I entered the hall, I saw a young nun in white and walked straight up to her. “Are you Priya?” I asked. She burst out laughing, “I am already a sadhvi. She’s the one who’s going to become one,” Sadhvi Arahassiji said, pointing to

strands.” She believes good karma the bride. Priya wore a copper and from past lives helps nuns overgreen lehenga, the traditional come pain. Priya isn’t new to the life of a attire of north Indian brides. She sported a matching bindi, bangles, Jain holy person. She has been in and gold-plated jewellery. Tinselly Bangalore for the past year and a green shadow highlighted her half, living and travelling barefeet black eyes and she wore mehendi with a group of five nuns. designs on her palms. For 10 days Daughter of a provision store preceding the initiation into the owner in Nasik, Maharashtra, order, nuns wear bridal gear. Her Priya was always close to her waist-length hair had been braid- mother’s sister Lalita, who was 12 years senior to her. Lalita chose to ed. “On the day of the deeksha, be become a sanyasini like her two which is May 16, I will shave off older sisters. She took deeksha and this hair. From then on, I’ll pluck received a new name, Arahassiji. out each strand of hair on my Among all her sisters, only Priya’s body, twice a year,” said the BA mother Vijaya got married, and now, her daughter has graduate. Why? chosen this path. “Hair is part of ‘We give up When Arahassiji beauty. We are givwent to the ing up all kinds of all kinds of monastery, Priya folsringara. Besides, sringara,’ lowed her. She went maintaining hair she says wherever her aunts takes up time and went. Barefoot like attention. My focus them, she walked long distances. will only be on prayer,” she said. Priya had none of the con- They would take every step cautemplative air of a nun. She was tiously, so as to not kill any living more like a girl about to embark being—insect or worm—that on an adventure. “Doesn’t it hurt?” might cross their path. She has I asked. Arahassiji joined in: “With walked through Maharasthra, practice the scalp grows stronger Karnataka and Madhya Pradesh, and we feel no pain. We help each receiving alms, and often going other by mutually plucking out the hungry and thirsty.

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editor talk For two weeks, as Karnataka went through a change of guard, we focused on politics and brought you stories that you couldn’’t have read elsewhere. Now that we have a new chief minister and the election heat and dust has settled, our team is back to scouring the city for other kinds of stories. This week, Savie Karnel met a 27-year-old girl preparing to be a Jain sadhvi. Sandra Fernandes visited five microbreweries——places that make and serve custom beers——to understand a new lifestyle trend. Thanks to the then chief minister Ramakrishna Hegde’’s policy of encouraging beer, Bangalore came to be known in the 1980s as the pub capital of India. Things have changed since. Maharashtra and Karnataka are grape-growing states, and compete fiercely in marketing their wines. Although the Karnataka government’’s efforts to popularise wine over beer haven’’t succeeded, the microbrewery style of drinking beer changes the way beer is perceived and consumed. Today, Bangalore is second only in Gurgaon in pioneering the microbreweries trend. Microbreweries are less boisterous than the pubs, and many families take their children along when they visit these shiny new joints. Anything crafted with care and offering an alternative to mass produced stuff will win a loyal clientele. Microbreweries emerged from a tradition of home brewing. Perhaps the government could see if the model could be used to revive native Indian brews, which it has banned in its anxiety to check bootlegging. On our Noteworthy pages, we compile information that excites the creative Bangalorean. Flip to that section for bits of news you can use. On another note: The Archive of Indian Music set up by the writer Vikram Sampath was launched last week. Listen to the vintage classics they are restoring and putting online. Till next week, then.

SR Ramakrishna ram@talkmag.in


talk|23 may 2013|talkmag.in

Walking through unknown towns and uninhabited areas can be dangerous to women monks. “Many places do not have Jain houses. We then spend nights in schools or such institutions,” Priya said. Once, the group of five nuns found itself stranded near Davanagere. They had arranged to stay at a village school, but having reached late, found it locked. “We had nowhere to stay. Some men teased us and started following us,” Priya said. They then went to the house of the village sarpanch, who let them sleep on his veranda. According to their custom, the nuns must have dinner before sunset, or not at all. Since it was sundown, they went to bed hungry. On another occasion, the group spent an entire night standing. “We were in a tiny room with a tin roof. It rained, and the roof was leaking all over. We were forced to crowd together in one dry spot and stand all night.” Jain monks and nuns do not carry any cash, but only a wooden bowl, a broom, and the clothes on their body. “We also carry religious books. The more things we have, the more responsibilities we carry. We try to be minimalist and spend most of our time in prayer,” Priya explained. When they speak of water, the nuns

sound more extreme than the most radical environmentalists. They take only sponge baths, because “bathing wastes a lot of water.” Also, according to Arahassiji, many beings living in water die because of water wastage. They drink only boiled water, to avoid consuming any living creature. They do not walk in the monsoon, to avoid accidently stepping on creatures in puddles or slushy ground. They cover their mouths to prevent accidently swallowing insects or even microbial beings when they inhale. Strictly vegetarian, they avoid anything that grows beneath the ground, like garlic, onion or potato. “These are roots, and to harvest them the plant has to be pulled out of the ground and killed,” Priya said. Holy people like her eat only leaves, flowers and fruits. Their vow of celibacy is so stringent that they cannot touch anyone from the opposite sex, including children. They are supposed to follow non-violence not

only in action, but also in thought and word. “We shouldn’t think ill of anyone, or hurt any being with words,” said Arahassiji. Does it mean that they do not get angry? “We sometimes feel anger, but control it and keep it within ourselves. Self control is also a virtue,” she explained. These rules haven’t deterred Priya from choosing a sadhvi’s life. In her view, “We go through several life cycles as various kinds of creatures. We are very rarely born human. It is our chance to repent for all the wrongs of our past lives and cleanse ourselves so that we move towards a higher level.” Her brother is a lawyer, and Priya’s two sisters are married. At first her family was reluctant to let her go, but has now agreed. “Married life is equally difficult. You do all household chores, and carry out your responsibilities. Yet, you hear people speak ill of you. That

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life doesn’t even let you spend time in prayer,” she says. Priya’s 55-year old mother Vijaya now wants to become a nun, too. The books dictate that she take permission from her family, but her husband is opposed to the idea. “I wanted to become a nun when I was young, but my parents got me married. Now, my husband and son aren’t giving me permission. I hope they will agree some day,” Vijaya said. Priya will spend the rest of her life shunning any entertainment. She will have no property, not even an extra set of clothes. But her excitement only grows as the day of her deeksha approaches. “We have distributed invitation cards to hundreds of people. My grandparents, parents, uncles, aunts and cousins are all here,” she said. On the sixteenth day of deeksha, Priya will break all ties with her family, to seek salvation. She will leave everything behind, including her name. She will live with a group of five nuns. The senior most among them (not senior in age, but in years as a nun) will consult a monk and decide on a name for her. She will get to know the name only during the deeksha ceremony. “They will give a name which matches my personality. I know I will like it,” said Priya.


fun lines

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spotlight

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This UAV’s not for drones PRASHANTH GN

prashanth.gn@talkmag.in

F

TEAM VYOMA The 13-member RVCE team with Vyoma, the prizewinning Unmanned Aerial Vehicle they designed and built

or students, there are few things worse than seeing their work flying—usually from the teacher to, say, the bin. But for these students from RV College of Engineering (RVCE), it was a high-five moment when their unconventional unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) took flight. It was so good they bagged the NASA Systems Engineering Award, beating 75 colleges from across the globe. It took Team Vyoma—all second-year mechanical engineering students—an entire year to conceptualise, design and build the UAV. Four of the 13 team members—Vignesh Pai, Maithreya JS, Paneendra Bhat and Srihari Sridhar, along with their head of department, Prof RS Kulkarni—travelled to California in April to attend the NASA event. The challenge was to offer NASA a design that was unconventional. “There are already so many known models of UAVs. Our college mates had designed UAVs before,” says Maithreya. For him and his friends, the challenge was to offer something different. They spent sleepless nights, and the unconventionality of their design lay in giving up the tail and tail wings completely. Instead, they got the wings to do the work of the tail and tail wings—this was the core of their design. Letting go of the tail also meant the UAV was lighter—another of NASA’s conditions. The concept of a ‘tailless’ UAV, says Prof Kulkarni, is not commonly adopted in amateur UAVs because most students are unsure whether the craft will remain in the air even if it takes off. But the RVCE team ensured it did and decided to adopt this design for NASA’s scrutiny. To keep the aircraft as light as possible, they used composites and balsa wood which are the lightest possible materials used for the airframe and wing. “We ended up fabricating the lightest micro UAV that the competition authorities had ever seen—123 gm. The UAV was just two inches high, 58 cm wide and 15 cm long. Because it was so light, the UAV could carry a load three times its weight. In fact, carrying a heavy load

RVCE students beat 75 colleges worldwide to bag NASA award for a tailless UAV that was the lightest that the competition authorities had ever seen

was another of the conditions,” explains Vignesh Pai, who dreams of designing aircraft in future (when he’s not working or dreaming, he watches National Geographic and reads sci-fi thrillers). Maithreya, who one day wants to work with ISRO and then NASA, told Talk: “We would have classes from 9 am to 5 pm. Post-5 pm, we would head to the workshop and go on all night. We wouldn’t sleep for days. We worked every Saturday and Sunday for a whole year to conceptualise and fabricate the UAV. It was work, work and work.” They missed classes, but mercifully, were given attendance. They worked out of the RVCE workshop where they got help from seniors Mrinal Pai, Shakib M and Aniruddh Shenoy and alumnus BL Naveen. Mrinal says: “We are students of mechanical engineering, not aeronautics. We had to train ourselves.” The team fabricated around 20 UAVs and then headed out to empty areas near NICE Road to test-fly

them. They would fly the UAVs morning, noon and evening. Not surprisingly, many flights crashed. But this only helped them get better. After examining the UAVs closely, they realised that the torque wasn’t enough to keep the flight in the air. The culprits were the weak server motors and so they embedded bigger motors that would generate a higher torque. This modification ensured that the flights lasted a good two to three minutes, the standard in international competitions. After several test flights, they sent videos, pictures and a design report to NASA and the Michigan and Pennsylvania-based Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE). If the report is not up to the mark, the participating college is disqualified from SAE’s competition held in Los Angeles. But RVCE made it through their scrutiny. At the end of the three-day SAE test flight competition for UAVs in

mid-April, NASA announced the RVCE team as winners of the system engineering award for design and configuration. “The co-ordinator organising the flights requested us to gift our model to him to enable him to examine threadbare how it was built,” says Paneendra Bhat, who wants to design jet engines once he’s done with studies. “What caught the organisers’ attention was the tailless design that no one else had attempted and the good three-minute flight with such a design,” says Srihari Sridhar, who likes the pace and thrill of Hollywood filmmaker Christopher Nolan and can watch The Prestige and The Memento ad infinitum. As Mrinal says, “Nothing is more fun than building an aircraft and flying it. It’s fascinating when you see your design at work and your work flying.” Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) is keen to examine the UAV, he says, adding that they are also planning to approach the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO).

NASA’’s feedback

““Excellent optimisation analysis of the requirements to achieve a winning design. Excellent analysis of design options, well organised overall design process and presentation of the major formulas used.”” It would be useful to summarise the total impact of the changes (changes in design) on weight, performance, or other attributes and it would be useful to describe the basis for the estimates (costs).””


studio beat

talk|23 may 2013|talkmag.in

Boomtime in the VO biz A slew of multi-lingual hopefuls are lining up in front of the mike, as Bangalore’s voiceover industry expands in the age of IVR and audio learning

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RAMESH HUNSUR

MARGOT COHEN

O

ne day, an aspiring Hindustani singer turned up at a music studio to offer a voice sample. But when someone cracked a joke, she couldn’t help laughing. Was it a generous giggle? Or an explosive guffaw? No one can recall. What’s clear is that this LOWER PITCH Veteran voiceover artist Gowri Puttaswamy says the increased competition is affecting quality recorded mirth started Sujata Shrikanth on a new path as a phy and history. While executives say their frequent attendance at high- days, it’s also easy for a company like voiceover artist—with an initial trick- it has been fairly easy to find people society parties, “their diction is so his to maintain relationships via Internet with recording artists and le of laugh tracks leading to a fast- to do voiceovers in Kannada and good,” he marvels. Yet this is a turbulent industry, producers around the globe. Thakur flowing stream of radio spots, e- Hindi, it has been more challenging learning manuals, devotional mes- to pin down polished speakers of and less lucrative than might be claims his company can provide expected. Companies in Bangalore voiceovers in 91 languages—includsages and brief telephone recordings Oriya, Assamese and Bengali. The search goes on, and the tend to offer script-readers lower ing some fairly obscure ones, like known as IVRs. Shrikanth prides herself on ver- pitch is glib. “If you have a good voice, compensation than their counter- Icelandic, Romanian, and Khmer. He satility. “Some IVRs have to be very why waste it by talking? Make some parts in Mumbai, in the hope of lur- concedes that there is more steady peppy. Others have to be soft and money out of it,” says Vikram Simha, ing more clients with a “cost-effec- demand for English, Chinese, crisp. Some clients want it to be very head of operations at Valuepoint tive” strategy. Meanwhile, experi- Japanese and Korean. The do-it-yourself trend is sensuous,” explains the 36-year-old Knowledgeworks. The company cur- enced freelancers live in fear that Bangalore resident. She recorded one rently works with nearly 200 free- their rates will be undercut by new- rather dispiriting for people like IVR (Interactive Voice Response) for lance voiceover artists. Sixty per cent comers, and tend to accept every Gowri Puttaswamy, whose former an investment firm in no less than of their assignments call for Indian offer that comes along. Newbies can studio at OmShree Digi Audio Media nine languages: Kannada, Marathi, languages, and the rest require get their foot in the door because was once a magnet for aspiring English or European there is no pressure to join a union, as voiceover artists. “The clients are not Tamil, Malayalam, exists in Mumbai. The downside, looking for quality now,” she comlanguages. Punjabi, Telugu, ‘Thousands of “There is so though, is lack of standard wage guar- plains. Budgets are dropping, but Gujarati, English, competition is rising, as more people much work, all over antees. and Hindi. (She people hear my jump into the business, she adds. Money is not the sole reward for the place,” says Geeta admits that a voice voice every day,’ And then there are those who V e n k a t a c h a l a m , those who are selected. Former TV 9 coach helped polish says Pradeep Senior Project reporter Badekkila Pradeep still gets a are utterly disillusioned. Take Aporup her Punjabi accent.) Manager for EDC buzz over his English voiceover for Acharya, a comedian and writer who Lately she has propelled her 11-year-old son into the Creative Technology Solutions off Namma Metro. “Thousands of peo- started doing voiceovers in Kolkata business, too, encouraging him to ITPL Road. “I see a lot of e-learning ple can hear my voice every day,” he before moving to Bangalore in 1994. One break eventually came when his exults. that is getting a big thrust.” record a Big Bazaar spot in Tamil. Meanwhile, some voiceover brother, an adman in Mumbai, recNewcomers need to practise Once a pipsqueak in Audioland compared to Mumbai and Delhi, daily, expand their vocabulary and entrepreneurs are benefiting from ommended him for a commercial for Bangalore is now scoring a broad learn relaxation techniques so they the reduced costs of new technolo- SevenX itch cream—which required range of multi-lingual opportunities don’t choke up in front of the mike. gies to record independently, thus Acharya to screech “kitchie, kitchie” “You should know how to pronounce undercutting the role of more estab- and fling a pair of white underwear in the voiceover industry. off a balcony. (The video can still be For example, Valuepoint each and every word correctly. You lished studios in the city. “I carry my portable vocal booth. viewed on YouTube.) Knowledgeworks, a firm based in should know what it means,” says At his peak, from 2007 to 2011, Banaswadi, works with both new- voice coach Neeraj Mehra, who runs It folds up in a suitcase. I can be up comers and veterans on projects like workshops across India. He finds that and running in 20 minutes,” says Acharya says that he polished off four documentaries, animation, and on- army officers’ wives have impressive Somesh Thakur, founder of Illuminus voiceovers a day. He delivered them line educational content in geogra- potential as voiceover artists. Due to Media Pvt Ltd in Bangalore. These in Bengali, Hindi, Telugu and English.


talk|23 may 2013|talkmag.in

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RAMESH HUNSUR

LEAD VOCALS Somesh Thakur of Illuminus Media says his company can provide voiceovers in 91 languages. (Right) Leading voiceover artist Sujata Shrikanth with son Anuj, whom she is initiating into the industry

But then the joy faded. “After a while, the term ‘vocal prostitution’ started to waft across my mind,” he reports. “It can be quite soul-deadening to get up every day and show up at this basement studio which has questionable aesthetics.” The lack of professionalism in the business also troubles him. “In India, everything is tied into a weird, personal feudal system which is very difficult to break,” he observes. Sometimes producers would pay less than promised, or give endless excuses for delaying payment. So these days 44-year-old Acharya is only recording a handful of voiceovers, opting to focus on his performance career instead. At the other end of the spectrum, Justin Jacob seems to be one of Bangalore’s most determined voiceover artists. His schedule sounds frenetic. He typically slots the sessions for e-learning manuals from 10 pm to 6 am, popping a multivitamin or chugging a Red Bull for stamina. Next would come a radio ad or a corporate film or an animation job, beginning mid-morning. Depending on the workload, he will also juggle appearances as an MC, where his booming bass voice becomes a startlingly live presence. If that sounds like a marathon, listen to this: Jacob once recorded the entire Bhagavad Gita in two 12-hour, non-stop sessions, coming up with a different voice for each character. “Sometimes when you record for long hours, you go into a trance. You tend not to notice your oxygen levels are depleting,” he observes. With his own well-appointed studio and a steady flow of requests, one might assume that 37-year-old Jacob would feel pretty confident. But that’s not the case. “You’re only as good as your last job,” he says worriedly. “The one you goof up on, is the one that everyone remembers you for.” He can’t recall any specific bloopers, but he

Aporup Acharya

Badekkila Pradeep

does keep looking over his shoulder at the competition. “The insecurity is always there,” Jacob explains. “You keep thinking, when is the next kid on the block going to arrive, with lower rates?” Income is unpredictable, since no standards apply. According to Chitra Swamy, a Bangalore-based voiceover artist who also runs training sessions, payment can be as low as Rs 100 for a 30-second IVR to Rs 1,500 for a two-minute recording. A corporate film with a script running to five pages can yield Rs 10,000, she adds. Other sources say that e-learning gigs might pay just Rs 500 to Rs 1,000 a page, or alternatively, Rs 4,500 an hour. A one-minute radio spot might pay Rs 4,000 to Rs 5,000. In this clique-driven, disorganised market, word of mouth is essential to landing a job. Still, many voiceover artists are taking pains to post samples through online voice banks in the hope of impressing a new client. Sometimes it does happen. According to Mallika Krishnamurthy, who was raised in Bangalore and subsequently moved to Mumbai, a voice-banked IVR for a Tamil Association led to an offer to record several audio books available through Audibles.com. The works included A Girl and A River, a novel by Bangalorebased author Usha KR. The growing pool of aspirants has also spurred the popularity of training courses in various cities in India. They are not cheap. Some Bangalore residents have popped over to Pune to enrol at Indian Voice-Overs, a school that charges Rs 35,000 for three sessions, and also provides a home study curriculum. “If you’re not

trained and you don’t know what you’re a microphone into his Manipal hospital doing, you can’t run the long race,” warns room when he was recovering from a Sasha Masand, the school’s founder. stroke. That may sound incredible, but this former member of the US Navy relishes the A question of accent story. Hayward had collapsed after a parIn the early days of Bangalore’s call centre boom, a lot of media attention focused on ticularly vigorous bicycle ride, and he could Indian workers who were coached to barely speak. But the producer still figured sound like Americans. But that strategy the patient was capable of providing some just didn’t work in the voiceover industry. extra lines after a spot was re-edited to suit “We’ve tried out the call centre people, but a client. To create a more pristine sound they were not able to sustain the accent for environment, Hayward recalls, they turned a long time,” recalls Prakash Paul, a off the air conditioners and the mobile voiceover coach and agent based in ventilation system. Hayward has done a string of videos Indiranagar. In many cases, a so-called “neutral for Wipro, Lenovo, and other corporate Indian English accent” works just fine. But houses. But he says his biggest thrill is for some spots or videos destined for glob- when he’s riding in the car with his kids al exposure, the industry has reached out and they hear his voice on a radio ad and to a small group of resident expatriate chirp, “Hey, that’s Dad!” While he isn’t preAmericans. For them, it’s a side occupation pared to relinquish his day job at a real estate investment firm, he keeps honing that ranges from appealing to tedious. Clay Kelton, a Texas native who his craft. Prakash Paul, the man who first spends most of his time running his own music studio in Bangalore, says that some inspired Haywood to consider a voiceover of the lengthy corporate scripts, laden with side line, believes that there is still a shorttechnical jargon, are “kind of tortuous. You age of good, quality voices in Bangalore. But he cautions newcomers to avoid the just space out and read like a robot.” In contrast, Charles Hayward II has exaggerated diction and octane-fuelled had so much fun doing voiceovers that he emotions of the amateur stage. “In this didn’t even mind when a producer sneaked case, less is more,” Paul concludes.


fresh brews

talk|23 may 2013|talkmag.in

H Nothing micro about it The pub experience is no longer about tossing off a pitcher. Sandra M Fernandes discovers that the growing number of brewpubs in town is giving rise to a sophisticated beer culture that includes jazz and—hold your breath—a library

RAMESH HUNSUR

JOY ON TAP Toit in Indiranagar offers crafted beers in desi flavours like ‘Basmati Blonde’

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ey! You there! With the sweaty, stinky tee… turn right back. You don’t want to be seen in there wearing THAT! And you in the corner, stop going glug-glug-glug, will ya? This is no pub, it’s a brewpub, a gastropub, and you gotta behave. It’s the kind of thing that could turn the regular pub-goer into a nervous wreck, but even s/he can’t deny that there’s something to be said for craft beer that comes to you straight from the microbrewery. It’s to the pub what a gourmet meal is to fast food. It makes you want to stop glug-glugging and go sip-sipping. It turns the pub crawl into a sophisticated strut. It makes beer the new wine. Already, the fizzy golden goodness is flowing at six microbreweries and a new brewpub is ready to join the bandwagon. These establishments aren’t the dingy, noisy, underage drinking hubs that the habitual beer-drinker has been used to. Taking a cue from the British pub experience, there’s often a play on wood and light. Seating is a mix of formal couches and high chairs. Sometimes, there are roughly-hewn benches and window counters, but even these have an air of the carefully careless. You’re unlikely to hear the familiar thumping beats as you make your way into a brewpub. The music could be retro hits that whisk you back in time or newer jazz and blue tracks that will never impinge on your conversation about your new Christian Louboutins. In fact, one pub even calls itself a jazz theatre. Partying has never been so peaceful. There are crowds for sure, but hardly the kind who will block your way to the bar, or leer and make snide remarks. On the contrary. Your fellow drinkers-diners know everything there is to know about bar etiquette as they nurse the golden goodness like connoisseurs, swirling it, holding it against the light, smelling it, and then taking long, meditative sips…. Well, beer is the new wine. Your neighbours at the adjacent table could be a couple in their 40s in rapt conversation, three generations of a family tucking into dinner, or just a bunch of techies talking about how they got sloshed at the last Oktoberfest in Munich (human nature being what it is, the decibel level rises ever so slightly at this point). Since these hangouts are usually well-lit, chances of stumbling on cuddling couples are few. Apart from the beer, the main draw is the gastronomic fare, which is why newer pubs are called gastropubs. Here, you have hand-tossed pizzas, salads and burgers vying for your atten-


talk|23 may 2013|talkmag.in

tion. Some of them offer north-Indian fare too. That’s why microbreweries attract families and the occasional party-goer. “We receive a mixed crowd, where 50 per cent are from the IT sector. In terms of age, about 20 per cent of them are between 40-45 years, while youngsters make up the rest,” says Ashok S, senior manager of Punjabi by Nature, a brewpub and restaurant in Koramangala. Ajay Nagarajan, CEO, Windmills Craftworks in Whitefield, says most of his clientele are above 28 years. “We see about 15 per cent senior citizens, 15 per cent expats and about 30 per cent from the corporate sector. The remaining 40 per cent is youngsters,” he says. Windmills Craftworks, a brewpub and jazz theatre, also has a library—rather unusual for a pub—against a wall in the main seating area, banishing with one fell swoop the assumption that pub-goers are all brawn, with just about a hint of grey in the upper storey. (Okay, okay, we take that back!) It’s add-ons such as these that have made pubs leisure destinations rather than quick fixes.

Beginnings The tradition of home-brewing originated in the UK in the 70s and soon spread to the US and the rest of Europe. With time, home-brewers began selling craft beer. In India, Gurgaon was the first to trigger the microbrewery madness in 2010 and is at the top of the game with eight microbrewies in the national capital region. Pune and Bangalore soon followed MELLOW FELLOWS Arbor Brewing Company on Magrath Road. More young professionals than college-goers make up the crowd at microbreweries

suit with the former being home to two There are no added preservatives, artificial microbreweries (Dolally and TJ’s Breworks) flavours or colours. and the latter joining the game with The Biere Club in 2011. Soon after, Toit, What makes them click? Punjabi by Nature, Windmills Craftworks, Microbreweries pump close to 500 litres of Arbor Brewing Company and Barleyz craft beer a day, a figure that’s encouraging opened up, inviting people to try out fresh newer players to enter the scene. After a craft beers off the tap. Prost will get there lull four years ago, beer sales have steadily soon. gone up, much to the delight of pub ownA fairly new concept in Bangalore, the ers. According to a report by the Karnataka nation’s beer capital, microbreweries offer State Beverages Corporation Limited fresh flavours of craft beer that are com- (KSBCL), beer sales in the state have gone paratively expensive. The reason for the up from 1.84 crore bulk litres in 2010-2011 high cost, says Arvind to 2.12 crore bulk litres in Raju, managing director 2011-2012. The report also Beer is the new of Biere Club, is that puts Bangalore on top of equipment and the raw wine. Partying’s the list when it comes to materials do not come market share in Karnataka. never been so cheap. “Most of it is Of course, the figures peaceful sourced from Germany, include the good old pubs Belgium and USA and the as well. cost can run into crores. Setting up a supApart from the beer, it’s the expat ply chain for your raw material too can be a population of over 10,000 and well-heeled, challenge,” he adds. well-travelled Bangaloreans who are drivAll of which translates to a higher ing the success story of microbreweries. price for the consumer. But beer aficiona- “Since people travel a lot, they are curious dos are not complaining since tax on to know more about craft beer, despite the imported bottled beer has only been mov- price tag attached to the mugs. The idea of ing north and the Belgian varieties they tasting fresh beer is one of the main reaonce relied on are becoming unduly expen- sons this concept is clicking with the masssive. They are quite happy to turn to fresh- es,” says Arvind. ly brewed craft beer. It’s the quality of beer that makes peoThe microbreweries in town offer at ple come back for more, says Nagarajan of least four types of craft beers—ales, lagers, Windmills Craftworks. “If you really like wheat and some house special or seasonal your beer, you will never go back to the varieties. The beers are prepared from bottled ones,” he said. malt, hops and barley and take about 14 to Tanya Kini, 20, will vouch for that. 20 days to ferment before being served. “Bottled beer has just one flavour. At a

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microbrewery, you get different varieties of beer, some of which are similar to the ones I’ve had abroad. These are fresh and taste different from bottled varieties,” says Tanya, who has been to several microbreweries with her family and has “loved the whole experience”.

Inspiration It’s no surprise that the beers taste similar to those abroad—most pub owners have found inspiration during their stints abroad. Gaurav Sikka, managing director of Arbor Brewing Company, was studying in Michigan University when his first encounter with microbreweries took place. “The first microbrewery I went to was Arbour Brewing Company (ABC) in Ann Arbour, the effort of likeminded people, mostly home-brewers from USA, and I was absolutely mesmerised. Since then, I have wanted to open a microbrewery in Bangalore,” he says. Nagarajan’s story is similar. He lived in the USA for 15 years where he started off as a home-brewer. “I began brewing at home, but soon my hobby turned serious and I decided to take this up professionally. That was also the time Karnataka was opening its licensing process to microbreweries, so everything fell into place,” he says. Most of the breweries have expat brewmasters who have a chemistry or microbiology background and are wellversed with the processes of distillation and fermentation. Nicole Yetter from the US feels that


talk|23 may 2013|talkmag.in

microbrewery for its ambience and the music. It’s where I can hang out with my friends,” he says. Meaning that traditional pubs can rest easy, at least for now. “Microbreweries have in no way affected our business. Our concept is very different and the food we serve is also very different,” says Stanley J Kids welcome In fact, when Talk went visiting the Simon, manager of Plan B. In fact, city’s microbreweries, we noticed footfalls have gone up, he claims. Basil Rapheal, general manager many families walking in with children, something that’s not common of Le Rock, Legends of Rock and the Moscow Mule, says or permitted in reguthat when it comes to lar pubs. Biere Club’s ‘You can’t afford the wallet factor, pubs manager Bijesh KC score. “The beer that says, “Most families more than a microbreweries offer walk in for weekend pitcher of craft is expensive. A person lunches or dinners. beer,’ says Basil cannot have more Since people don’t than a pitcher of craft have a problem bringing their kids, we don’t have a beer,” he says, adding that microbreweries do create curiosity, but people problem either”. Nicole says, “Unlike pubs, micro- will return to pubs since “bottled beer brewries are sober and don’t have loud has a universal taste.” music. Besides, the staff is good with kids and they keep the little ones Competition busy.” However, owners of microbreweries Anu Gummaraju, who runs a aren’t worried about competition, not non-profit organisation and is a fre- even from their own kind. Annameni quent visitor to The Biere Club with Vidhatha, co-founder of Prost, says her family, agrees. “Pubs are too bois- microbreweries will do well as long as terous and appeal to a different, the city’s diverse culture thrives. “I younger crowd who are into serious don’t think there will be stiff competidrinking. Microbreweries, on the tion even if 15 microbreweries open other hand, have a calm restaurant up because all of them will be situated feel,” she adds. in different areas. People will go to the Which is what a certain section closest microbrewery since they don’t of beer drinkers would rather do with- like to travel too much for a glass of out. Like Melvin Manuel, an event beer,” he says. manager. “I’ve been to Toit and was After all, they’d rather spend pleased with their concept. But I time nursing their drink—swirling, would any day prefer a pub over a sniffing, sipping. microbreweries here are on par with their foreign counterparts. “The quality of beer served here is as good as what is served anywhere in the world. The crowd coming to the microbreweries is quite similar to those abroad, a mix of all ages,” she says.

The microbrewery biz The government is loosening up a bit with regard to microbreweries. Earlier, anyone who wanted to open a microbrewery had to possess a CL-9 licence, which is a bar and restaurant licence, before applying for a microbrewery licence. However, the Karnataka Excise Brewery Rules were amended in March last year, allowing people to directly apply for a microbrewery licence. The initial licence fee is Rs 2 lakh. Apart from this, the owner also has to pay an additional 15 per cent of the licence fee. ““Anyone who has an installed capacity of not more than 1,000 litres per day and 10,000 sq ft for dining and parking can apply for a microbrewery licence,”” said an excise official. There are dos and don’’ts:

A microbrewery cannot be set up within 100 metres of any government office, educational institution, or place of worship.The licensee also needs a clearance from the Pollution Control Board and the environment department. Another mandatory requirement is the presence of a chemist (who holds a degree in science with chemistry as a subject) to check the quality of raw material and the liquor. The alcohol content in the beer should not exceed eight per cent and the microbrewery must have a proper record of the degree of alkalinity, temperature, gravity and other stipulations that an excise inspector will check every month. If these conditions are not met, the department can reject or cancel the licence.

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Colour Black Price Rs 275 for 500 ml

Michael Faricy's Irish Stout Taste Rich and creamy on the palate, chalky burnt flavours balanced by lush dark chocolate, smoky finish. Food pairing Turkish delight pizza and lamb chops Colour Dark brown Price Rs 225 for 500 ml

Big Ben Pale Ale

ARBOR BREWING COMPANY One of the latest entries in the microbrewery set up in the city, located on Magrath Road, Arbour Brewing Company is probably the largest in terms of variety of beer. The place has a separate balcony area that provides a view of the area. There are games like carom and foosball to keep you entertained.

Bangalore Bliss (Hefeweizen) Taste Tangy lemon, spicy clove and fresh ripe banana taste, slightly tart finish Food pairing Salads or mildly spicy sausages Colour Straw colour Price Rs 225 for 500 ml

Brasserie Blonde

Taste Aroma of spicy sweet orange peel and coriander Food pairing Spicy seafood Colour Copper brown Price Rs 225 for 500 ml

Phat Abbot Belgian Tripel Taste Sweet citrus and spicy flavour, tropical fruit balanced by medium hop bitterness combined with peppery phenols. Food pairing Spicy Cajun dishes and crab cakes Colour Deep yellow Price Rs 275 for 500 ml

Cold War Coffee Stout Taste Mildly chalky espresso character balanced by a rich sweet creamy maltiness. Food pairing Coconut curries or Fleetwood sausages

Taste Aroma of malt and mild fruitiness, a hint of hops, light bodied, medium Food pairing Fish and chips and grilled chicken Colour Golden Price Rs 225 for 500 ml

Raging Elephant India Pale Ale Taste High bitterness, full floral citrusy hops aroma. Food pairing Pork belly and beef tenderloin Colour Dark copper Price Rs 225 for 500 ml

No Parking Pilsner Taste Traditional North German- style pilsner brewed with German malts and imported German Tettnang hops, medium bodied, crisp and clean with mildly salty noble hop bitterness. Food pairing Grilled tuna and grilled asparagus Colour Deep golden Price Rs 225 for 500 ml

PUNJABI BY NATURE Located in Koramangala, this one looks like a restaurant right until you notice the brewery equipment. The place is well lit and the music does not overpower conversation. Here's what the beer menu offers.

Wheat beer Taste Low to medium maltiness and aroma, low in hop flavour and aroma, estery and lightly spiced flavour. Food pairing Veg Galouti kebab and shahi tangri kebab Colour Straw colour Price Rs 195 for 500 ml

Dark lager Taste Rich and a toasty beer, slight caramel flavour and

complex malty, bready flavour. Food pairing Galouti kebab and tandoori paneer tikka Colour Black Price Rs 195 for 500 ml

Premium lager Taste Soft maltiness and high hop flavour and aroma, dry finish. Food pairing Murgh tandoori and kasturi kebab

Colour Golden Price Rs 195 for 500 ml

House special Ale Taste Brewed using special fermenting yeast, rounding maltiness, smooth aromatic hop flavor, full bodied taste of malt Food pairing Amritsari murgh and tawa surmai Colour Brown Price Rs 195 for 500 ml


talk|23 may 2013|talkmag.in

Your new beer guide

Microbreweries in town are serving craft ales, stouts and even fruitbased seasonal specials. Here’s a look at what they have to offer RAMESH HUNSUR

TOIT Located in Indiranagar, Toit is perhaps the only microbrewery that attracts youngsters like a regular pub would. There is also loud music on weekends to suit the mood. The two-storied building is a hit with its beer and foodies too swear by the pizzas. Here's what they brew.

Basmati Blonde Taste Low alcohol, light tangerine hop aroma and flavor, moderate fruitness, sweet finish Food pairing Cheesy pasta and grilled fish Colour Straw Price Rs 200 plus tax for 500 ml

Tin Tin Toit Taste Refreshing elegant moderate strength wheat based ale, moderate sweetness, coriander aroma with zesty orangey fruitiness. Food pairing Battered fried prawns and seafood pizza Colour Deep straw colour Price Rs 200 for 500 ml

THE BIERE CLUB Resembling a British pub, the three-storied The Biere Club on Vittal Mallya Road was the first microbrewery in the city. Besides beer and music, one of the floors offers a dedicated fine-dining space too. We like our beer most on the ground floor, surrounded by walls filled with intriguing graffiti. There are six kinds of beers on offer.

Indian Pale Ale Taste: Rich aroma and flavour, fermented at a high temperature Food pairing Fried cheesy garlic mushroom, crunchy

fried chicken wings in Moroccan spices Colour Golden Price Rs 220 for 300 ml

Hefeweizen (Wheat) Taste: Made with flocculent yeast, spicy clove like character, banana aroma, infused with herbs and spices Food pairing Moorish prawns, hummus and prawn skewers Colour Light yellow Price Rs 200 for 300 ml

Indian version Food pairing Fried cheesy garlic mushroom mini lamb burgers Colour Golden brown Price Rs 160 for 300 ml

German Pilsner Taste Made with a bottom fermenting yeast, light aroma and flavour. Food tasting Crispy fried squid and dips and salads Colour Straw coloured Price Rs 160 for 300 ml

American Pale Ale All Malt (Stout) Taste: Light in comparison with the

Taste Made using roasted malt or barley,

hops, water and yeast, strong coffee flavour. Food pairing Marinated beef skewers and marinated olives Colour Dark brown Price Rs 220 for 300 ml

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Toit Weiss Taste Fruity refreshing wheat based ale, light to moderate wheat aroma, hint of cloves and

bananas from the yeast, medium to light structure Food pairing Grilled fish and glazed chicken steak Colour Copper Price Rs 200 for 500 ml

Toit Red Taste Full bodied ale, richness with caramel, aroma of pine/ grape fruits, moderate to high hop flavours, rich malt structure. Food pairing Spicy beef and Jalapeno pizza Colour Golden brown Price Rs 220 for 500 ml

Colonial Toit Taste Sweet and bitter, high hop and malt aroma, strong caramel component Food pairing Chicken in peppers and cheese fondue Colour- Dark Brown Price- Rs 220 for 500 ml

Dark Knight Stout Taste Dark, full- bodied, roasty malty ale, rich coffee chocolaty aroma Food pairing Chocolate cake and lamb pie Colour Black Price Rs 200 for 500 ml

Belgian Strong Ale Taste Rich aroma and flavour, strong jaggery aroma because of the yeast. Food pairing Fried cheesy garlic mushroom, crunchy fried chicken wings in Moroccan spices Colour Orangish brown Price Rs 220 for 300 ml

WINDMILLS CRAFTWORKS Situated far away from the maddening crowds, Windmills Craftworks in Whitefield has a jazz theatre area and a library catering to music lovers and bookworms. Besides genres like architecture, wildlife and novels there are colouring books for the children. They serve four regular craft beers and seasonal fruit varieties too.

Golden Ale Taste Crisp and refreshing with a bready flavour, floral hop character. Food Seafood or masala fried chicken Colour Straw Price Rs 195 for 300 ml

Hefeweizen Taste Made with German Malts, flavours of cloves and bananas, slighty tart

fruity beer. Food pairing Assorted sausage platter and chatpata paneer tikka Colour Deep straw colour Price Rs 195 for 300 ml

Stout Taste Rich with roasted malt flavour, spicy American hop finish. Food pairing Chips and dips and lasagna lamb

Colour Black Price Rs 195 for 300 ml

India Pale Ale Taste Strong flavour of pale, caramel Munich malts. Food pairing Desserts and southern fried chicken with gravy Colour Golden Price Rs 225 for 300 ml


first person

talk|23 may 2013|talkmag.in

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Macro confessions… ….of a microbrewery addict. Once a drinker of bottled beer, Chaitra Anand explains why she converted to the fresh brew

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y earliest memories of drinking a bottle of chilled beer go back to a time when I was a scrawny 18-year-old, desperately in need of gaining a few pounds to be socially acceptable. I’m not sure if I should thank my parents for introducing me to my first bottle of Kalyani Black Label, which if I recollect now, had a somewhat sweetish yet strong flavour. I also remember having immediately acquired a taste for beer, turning up the volume of my car stereo every Sunday and singing along like a sailor to Pink Floyd’s Wish you were here while reminiscing about my sister, who had just then relocated from the pub city of Bangalore. And from there on began my lifelong romance with beer, a drink that symbolised and stirred up inexplicable feelings of joy, sadness and nostalgia all at the same time. Though beer is not considered the most befitting drink for the gentle sex, for me it always signified camaraderie and over-the-top happy moments with friends. Needless to say, the surge of microbreweries in the city has only escalated my love for this drink. For a long time, it was the homegrown ‘King of Good Times’— trapped in little green bottles—that kept me company at my regular haunt, Take 5, which had become a second home to me. But the opening night of The Biere Club changed all that. With freshly brewed wheat beer, ale, lager and more now available on tap, I had to seriously rethink my

love for bottled beer. To my fizzy imagination, it seemed there was something in the air that night that changed Bangalore’s love for bottled beer forever. Soon enough, I was summoned by the well-lit, huge expanses and inviting ambience of Toit, and found myself present there week after week with other beer-lovers. Where I would earlier visit a Hard Rock Café purely for its ambience, I started frequenting Toit, also because it was convenient in every way (read location). The Tin Tin of Toit swiftly replaced the Coronas’, Asahis’ and Heinekens’ of Bangalore’s popular pubs, which suddenly began to look a lot older. Just the other day, in pursuit of reliving the glory of my college days, I strode into Tavern Inn with an old buddy. It was almost claustrophobic; I couldn’t bear to be there for more than a few seconds. I found solace rather quickly, at the Arbor Brewing Company where I ordered myself a couple of ‘Bangalore Bliss’ beers. It was that day that the beer lover in me realised that we are in the age of the microbrewery, which is an experience in itself. It symbolises youthfulness and merry making in a good clean way and lets you reignite your own youthful cheer. Maybe it’s the large spaces that does it, or the sumptuous food, or the great music, or just the fact that the bartenders tend to be a lot friendlier. They always seems to have enough space to accommodate people, and, as the saying goes, the more the merrier. Or maybe it’s just the great-tasting, free-flowing beers that make you view the world with more benign eyes. I might choose to stack up my refrigerator with bottled beer for lazy Sundays at home, but when there’s a microbrewery at hand with its promise of warmth and merriment, there’s no way I’ll stay holed up in my car, singing to myself with a solitary bottle of beer.

Chaitra Anand

THE HEAT IS ON Logan Schaedig (standing) at work in the brew room

The art of brewing is accepting the microbrewery culLogan Schaedig, brewmaster at Bangalore ture with open arms. the Arbor Brewing Company, has no process formal degree in the trade but The Brewing beer is extremely simple; it is the mastered it for the sheer love of it maintenance of the equipment that is a chal-

B

rewing craft beer was always exciting and gave me immense pleasure. Like most future brew masters, I first tried my hand at brewing it at home. Later on, I started volunteering at brewpubs, starting with the Arbor Brewing Company in Ann Arbor, USA, seven years ago. After volunteering at a few brew pubs, I finally opened my own microbrewery in Ecuador two years ago. Though brewing beer seems like an extremely easy process, it took me nearly four years to master it. The whole process of brewing beer is ancient, and it’s only recently that it has become fashionable. It has become a ‘cool’ sort of process that has been branded and marketed. I would any day choose craft beer over bottled beer; you cannot compare the two. Bottled beer has a lot of preservatives and is not good for health, but on the other hand, there are studies to prove that craft beer is actually beneficial for health. Also, there is no thrill in making bottled beer, which is mass produced, using ingredients of inferior quality. I was very surprised to see that Bangalore can brew good quality craft beers. Before I began brewing at Arbor Brewing Company in Bangalore, I used to visit other microbreweries in town and was pleased to see the quality they were offering. The only thing I find a little off is how everybody is reserved and prefers to play it safe in terms of the choices given to the people. The microbreweries in the city provide a very different and aesthetic environment. They are open spaces, unlike your average crowded pub, where people come mostly to get drunk. At a microbrewery, you can relax, have a drink and chat with your friends. We have recently seen many families walking in with their kids. Usually you would not associate kids with drinks, so this shows how relaxed the ambience of a microbrewery is, and how it supports responsible drinking. It’s good to see that

lenge. To brew a perfect craft beer, you need malt, water, yeast and hops. The first step is to convert the starches from the sugar in the grain by mixing water and malt at a specific temperature. Once the process is finished, you get a sugary liquid called wort. The wort is then clarified and strengthened by re-circulating it using a pump. The clarified liquid is moved into a kettle, where its boiled for an hour, after which hops is added to it. (This is an important stage because what amount and type of hops is added at what stage determines the flavour and the bitterness of the beer). Once the wort comes to a boil, it is important to cool it at 20°C. At this stage the wort is a bitter and sterile sugary liquid. Once it is cooled, it is poured into a fermenter and yeast is added. This is then allowed to ferment for two weeks. After two weeks, the beer is ‘conditioned’ before serving it on tap. We mostly brew 10 hectolitres every two weeks. If the sales are particularly high, we brew more often. The initial process of getting the raw beer takes about eight hours, while the rest of it takes two weeks. Time, temperature and pressure play a very important role in brewing beers. These three aspects need to be monitored constantly because if they vary even slightly, the taste or the bitterness varies accordingly. Also, quality ingredients are a must if you want to brew the perfect beer. Particularly, it’s the yeast that gives the beer its real texture. If you need to understand beers, you need to know the different beer styles. For example, Germany is known for its lagers whereas the US boasts of Indian Pale Ale (IPA). Certain styles are meant to be smooth in nature, others are not. I would like to see brewmasters stop making boring beers—they should be experiment with the ingredients instead. (As told to Sandra Fernandes)


talk|23 may 2013|talkmag.in

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God’s gift to men

Beer SAVIE KARNEL

savie.karnel@talkmag.in

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once overheard two people in a pub. “God bless the one who invented beer,” said one man. “God bless him. But do you know who invented it?” asked the other. “No. Do you?” asked the first man. “No,” replied the other. “Such things cannot be invented. They are God’s gifts to men.” The question of who invented beer cannot really be answered. Beer seems to have W been in existence since ancient times in all parts of the world in varying forms, with different names. No one knows who first created beer. The origin of the term beer is equally ambiguous. There are many theories around it. In Old English, what we know today as The Talk column on beer was called ‘ale’. word origins Well, now we broadly

differentiate beers as ales and lagers. Ale is beer fermented at high temperature. Lager is the drink fermented at lower temperatures, and that is what we usually get in bottles. In earlier days, the English called all kinds of beer by the name of ‘ale’. The term beer is believed to have first originated in medieval Europe. When Catholic monks started brewing beer around the sixth century, they borrowed the Latin term biber, meaning drink or beverage. It became bier. The Germans were the first to replace ale with bier. It was later used in Dutch and French, but not in English. In English, bier was used only in poetic language, and that too, rarely. The common term for the beverage continued to be ‘ale’. Around the 16th century, hops (a twining climbing plant) began to be used as a preservative in ale, instead of other leaves or barks. This new kind of ale, made in Flanders in Belgium and imported to England, came to be called beer in English. The usage of hops as a preservative became popular in Europe, as did the term beer. This drink was not exactly like the beer we drink today, but was something like hopflavoured ale.

K E Y

O R D S

CHEERS American artist Karen Eland’s picture of beer drinkers, created with beer instead of paint

A 17th century jingle puts it this way: Turkeys, carps, hops, piccadel and beer/ Came into England all in one year. The beer we know today—actually the lager beer—was invented only about 150 years ago. This new kind replaced the earlier ones (what we now know as ‘ales’) and gained popularity. The term beer became synonymous with the bubbly drink with low alcohol content. The original term ale was reduced to just a form of beer. Microbreweries these days also mention ale as one of several kinds of beer in

their menus. What’s ironical is that ale was once a common term and beer a poetic word. Now it is the other way round. The other theory on the origin of the term beer is that it came from the ProtoGermanic term beuwo, meaning barley. Some etymologists believe it comes from the Old English word beor meaning strong drink or mead. All these theories have been disputed. Does anyone care? For the guzzlers, beer could very well have originated from the happy ‘burrp’ sound they produce after downing a mug or two.


informal venues

talk|23 may 2013|talkmag.in

17

KEEPING IT INFORMAL Mana D Contractor, Arwen Magma and Upasana Mohan

Jammin’ in the basement If Infosys, Bangalore’s most famous company, could grow out of a garage, why not the next big thing in music? Bands are grabbing unconventional platforms to be seen and heard SANDRA M FERNANDES

sandramarina.fernandes@talkmag.in

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n a warm Friday evening in a basement on Brigade Road, Lady Gaga’s Poker Face held a select audience mesmerised. Of course, it wasn’t the lady with a decided preference for the bizarre, it was Bangalore-based boy band BRB—Brim River Bridge—belting out one hit after another at Garage Jam, a platform for young, talented musicians. For young bands, struggling bands and bands without the moolah, Garage Jam is a godsend. It was an idea that hit Arwen Magma, the founder, at a performance in London where little-known bands could boast of their own space. In fact, he even remembers people performing in the subway and on the alleys. “I wanted to provide a platform to the many bands in Bangalore—amateur as well as established—since the city has only a few venues. The ones that are already there offer space only to established bands,” he says.

Get in touch

OVEN MAVENS (Left) Friday night at Garage Jam, Brigade Road. (Far left) A performance at Furtados, Koramangala. (Above) Chandbibi and the Waste Candidates perform at Mana’s home

So when Magma approached Sonido Musicals on Brigade Road last year, they not only lent him their basement, but also equipment for the performances. As a result, Garage Jam has been organising performances every Friday evening since October for bands big and small, from colleges and corporates. Last Friday, it was the turn of metal rock band Purple Revive. With some original numbers and some Iron Maiden hits, the four-piece band sent energy levels soaring. There were the young, restless head-bangers who gravitate to all things music and there were older folks who had stopped by out of curiosity. The music bound them all. Something similar plays out at Furtados Music store in Koramangala once in three months. “Ever since the store became operational, musicians have been encouraged to perform here. We wanted more interaction with the musicians and we wanted to provide them with a live venue where they didn’t have to shell out money,” says Trigya Singh, marketing and events specialist at Furtados Music. The result is a gig where even the audience can walk in and watch for free.

And if bands want the opportunity to play me over and I would perform, at my expense.” at a restaurant, Café Noir is one place they can Mohan has over a hundred such performances go to. Thierry Jasserand, its owner, wanted to his credit, some of which were outside Café Noir to be a place where people could Karnataka. “The concept is unique,” says Mohan. “I enjoy French food and good music and that’s how he began inviting artistes to perform. perform in the comfort of people’s homes. They Though the café has a dedicated artiste per- don’t spend any money and even people who forming every week, it also encourages others come to hear us don’t have to pay,” he says. The magic lies in the intimate spaces. The to perform. “We don’t pay the artistes and they wackily named Chandbibi and the Waste don’t pay us,” Jasserand explains. However, not all musicians are waiting for Candidates, for instance, is an acoustic band that grew out of such intimacy. free spaces to perform. Singer “The whole idea behind Sideways and composer Upasana Mohan, The intimate Acoustics as a platform came for instance, prefers invading from the tiny desk concerts I people’s homes. Literally. The spaces create kept watching on YouTube. It invasion, of course, is a welcome magic for was amazing to see how music one. Mohan, who opened musicians can get so intimate by holding Upasana—a school teaching shows in smaller spaces,” says Kannada sugama sangeeta—in 1999, started a programme called Mana D Contractor, freelance designer and Maneyangaladalli Kavita Gayana (Poetry in lead vocalist of the band. She’s also the curator Song at Your Frontyard) where he would per- of Sidewaystosound.com, an online space where people can listen to new music for free, form with a few artistes. “My aim was to promote and establish the and which spawned Sideways Acoustics, an inibhavageete form and that’s why I began per- tiative that hosts acoustic musicians in inforforming in people’s homes. They would invite mal venues. So far, they have had two perform-

ances by Chandbibi and the Waste Candidates, both at Mana’s house, but now, people are inviting them to perform in their homes. However, it’s not smooth sailing all the way. Performing in a non-commercial space does have its share of challenges. “Finding good sound equipment is our biggest hurdle yet,” says Mana. “Sideways Acoustic has no funding, so we rely on what people donate and lend us,” she says. It’s the kind of problem that Magma grappled with till Sonido stepped in. “Not everyone will provide you with good equipment,” says Magma. “It was a struggle because the bands have to play, but no one will play without proper equipment. Luckily, Sonido solved our problem,” he adds. While organisers try to do their bit for the cause of music, they don’t always emerge from these gigs smelling of roses. Though they may have committed to a weekly or monthly gig, they are often scrambling for artistes to perform at the eleventh hour. “It’s not always easy to book artistes for performances since they have tight schedules,” says Trigya. Jasserand agrees, adding that the biggest

challenge is finding the right artiste who will be comfortable at an unconventional venue. “The second challenge is to find a singer who will have enough songs to play for two hours and who will not keep repeating the same songs all the time,” he adds. Aileen Carneiro, a student who has played at the Garage Jam with her band, feels that if the music does not click, the crowd will just vanish. “As soon as the music turns unfamiliar (or too familiar, as Jasserand points out), people walk off without waiting to hear the next song. It’s unfortunate and discouraging for musicians who are trying to promote a certain genre or style,” says Aileen. “On the other hand, if the music’s good, a crowd turns up, more often than not out of curiosity.” It’s this crowd that organisers hope will grow. Jasserand believes that such places are not only important for the music scene, but also for the people of Bangalore. “There is enough noise around us with the traffic. So, sometimes the nice things must grow. I am ready to welcome some singers in our Cafe Noir at Phoenix Mall and Orion Mall,” he remarks.

Garage Jam, Brigade Road: 9342920002 | Furtados Music School, Koramangala: 41104304 / 41104305 | Cafe Noir, UB City: 40982050 | Upasana Mohan: 98453 38363 | Sideways to Sound: sidewaystosound@gmail.com

Bands that have made it big

If your first performance is in a garage, the only way to move is up. Here are some garage bands that have done just that... From Bangalore: Dequma and Broken Membrane International bands: Nirvana, Metallica and The Beatles

So what’’s in it?

The artistes: Find a platform to showcase their music without spending too much The organisers: Take pride in promoting artistes and bands, get an audience which, in turn, will increase footfalls and business at the venue The audience: Get to listen to musical performances in varied genres and meet the people behind the songs. And all for free


informal venues

talk|23 may 2013|talkmag.in

17

KEEPING IT INFORMAL Mana D Contractor, Arwen Magma and Upasana Mohan

Jammin’ in the basement If Infosys, Bangalore’s most famous company, could grow out of a garage, why not the next big thing in music? Bands are grabbing unconventional platforms to be seen and heard SANDRA M FERNANDES

sandramarina.fernandes@talkmag.in

O

n a warm Friday evening in a basement on Brigade Road, Lady Gaga’s Poker Face held a select audience mesmerised. Of course, it wasn’t the lady with a decided preference for the bizarre, it was Bangalore-based boy band BRB—Brim River Bridge—belting out one hit after another at Garage Jam, a platform for young, talented musicians. For young bands, struggling bands and bands without the moolah, Garage Jam is a godsend. It was an idea that hit Arwen Magma, the founder, at a performance in London where little-known bands could boast of their own space. In fact, he even remembers people performing in the subway and on the alleys. “I wanted to provide a platform to the many bands in Bangalore—amateur as well as established—since the city has only a few venues. The ones that are already there offer space only to established bands,” he says.

Get in touch

OVEN MAVENS (Left) Friday night at Garage Jam, Brigade Road. (Far left) A performance at Furtados, Koramangala. (Above) Chandbibi and the Waste Candidates perform at Mana’s home

So when Magma approached Sonido Musicals on Brigade Road last year, they not only lent him their basement, but also equipment for the performances. As a result, Garage Jam has been organising performances every Friday evening since October for bands big and small, from colleges and corporates. Last Friday, it was the turn of metal rock band Purple Revive. With some original numbers and some Iron Maiden hits, the four-piece band sent energy levels soaring. There were the young, restless head-bangers who gravitate to all things music and there were older folks who had stopped by out of curiosity. The music bound them all. Something similar plays out at Furtados Music store in Koramangala once in three months. “Ever since the store became operational, musicians have been encouraged to perform here. We wanted more interaction with the musicians and we wanted to provide them with a live venue where they didn’t have to shell out money,” says Trigya Singh, marketing and events specialist at Furtados Music. The result is a gig where even the audience can walk in and watch for free.

And if bands want the opportunity to play me over and I would perform, at my expense.” at a restaurant, Café Noir is one place they can Mohan has over a hundred such performances go to. Thierry Jasserand, its owner, wanted to his credit, some of which were outside Café Noir to be a place where people could Karnataka. “The concept is unique,” says Mohan. “I enjoy French food and good music and that’s how he began inviting artistes to perform. perform in the comfort of people’s homes. They Though the café has a dedicated artiste per- don’t spend any money and even people who forming every week, it also encourages others come to hear us don’t have to pay,” he says. The magic lies in the intimate spaces. The to perform. “We don’t pay the artistes and they wackily named Chandbibi and the Waste don’t pay us,” Jasserand explains. However, not all musicians are waiting for Candidates, for instance, is an acoustic band that grew out of such intimacy. free spaces to perform. Singer “The whole idea behind Sideways and composer Upasana Mohan, The intimate Acoustics as a platform came for instance, prefers invading from the tiny desk concerts I people’s homes. Literally. The spaces create kept watching on YouTube. It invasion, of course, is a welcome magic for was amazing to see how music one. Mohan, who opened musicians can get so intimate by holding Upasana—a school teaching shows in smaller spaces,” says Kannada sugama sangeeta—in 1999, started a programme called Mana D Contractor, freelance designer and Maneyangaladalli Kavita Gayana (Poetry in lead vocalist of the band. She’s also the curator Song at Your Frontyard) where he would per- of Sidewaystosound.com, an online space where people can listen to new music for free, form with a few artistes. “My aim was to promote and establish the and which spawned Sideways Acoustics, an inibhavageete form and that’s why I began per- tiative that hosts acoustic musicians in inforforming in people’s homes. They would invite mal venues. So far, they have had two perform-

ances by Chandbibi and the Waste Candidates, both at Mana’s house, but now, people are inviting them to perform in their homes. However, it’s not smooth sailing all the way. Performing in a non-commercial space does have its share of challenges. “Finding good sound equipment is our biggest hurdle yet,” says Mana. “Sideways Acoustic has no funding, so we rely on what people donate and lend us,” she says. It’s the kind of problem that Magma grappled with till Sonido stepped in. “Not everyone will provide you with good equipment,” says Magma. “It was a struggle because the bands have to play, but no one will play without proper equipment. Luckily, Sonido solved our problem,” he adds. While organisers try to do their bit for the cause of music, they don’t always emerge from these gigs smelling of roses. Though they may have committed to a weekly or monthly gig, they are often scrambling for artistes to perform at the eleventh hour. “It’s not always easy to book artistes for performances since they have tight schedules,” says Trigya. Jasserand agrees, adding that the biggest

challenge is finding the right artiste who will be comfortable at an unconventional venue. “The second challenge is to find a singer who will have enough songs to play for two hours and who will not keep repeating the same songs all the time,” he adds. Aileen Carneiro, a student who has played at the Garage Jam with her band, feels that if the music does not click, the crowd will just vanish. “As soon as the music turns unfamiliar (or too familiar, as Jasserand points out), people walk off without waiting to hear the next song. It’s unfortunate and discouraging for musicians who are trying to promote a certain genre or style,” says Aileen. “On the other hand, if the music’s good, a crowd turns up, more often than not out of curiosity.” It’s this crowd that organisers hope will grow. Jasserand believes that such places are not only important for the music scene, but also for the people of Bangalore. “There is enough noise around us with the traffic. So, sometimes the nice things must grow. I am ready to welcome some singers in our Cafe Noir at Phoenix Mall and Orion Mall,” he remarks.

Garage Jam, Brigade Road: 9342920002 | Furtados Music School, Koramangala: 41104304 / 41104305 | Cafe Noir, UB City: 40982050 | Upasana Mohan: 98453 38363 | Sideways to Sound: sidewaystosound@gmail.com

Bands that have made it big

If your first performance is in a garage, the only way to move is up. Here are some garage bands that have done just that... From Bangalore: Dequma and Broken Membrane International bands: Nirvana, Metallica and The Beatles

So what’’s in it?

The artistes: Find a platform to showcase their music without spending too much The organisers: Take pride in promoting artistes and bands, get an audience which, in turn, will increase footfalls and business at the venue The audience: Get to listen to musical performances in varied genres and meet the people behind the songs. And all for free


box office

talk|23 may 2013|talkmag.in

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IN A PICKLE Vineet Kumar Singh in Murabba, directed by Anurag Kashyap, the best of the four Bombay Talkies segments

A high school project All four segments in Bombay Talkies falter at the screenplay level, and reveal how much more even Bollywood’s more talented filmmakers have to learn

B

MK Raghavendra

is the author of Seduced by the Familiar: Narration and Meaning in Indian Popular Cinema (Oxford, 2008), 50 Indian Film Classics (HarperCollins, 2009) and Bipolar Identity: Region, Nation and the Kannada Language Film (Oxford, 2011).

ombay Talkies, intended to celebrate the centenary of Indian cinema, puts together four stories filmed by directors widely regarded as among Bollywood’s most talented. It is a conscious attempt at another kind of cinema— one based on the short story rather than the purana. This suggestion may be resisted, but previous efforts by these directors, like Kabhi Alvida Na Kehna (Karan Johar), Gangs of Wasseypur (Anurag Kashyap), Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara (Zoya Akhtar) and Oye Lucky! Lucky Oye! (Dibakar Banerjee) are too loosely structured to owe to the short story or the novel and are closer to mythology, although, their subject matter may be nominally contemporary. Their larger-than-life celebration of wealth and power also places them in the heroic territory of the ‘epic’—even if the characters are not doing anything more than spending money, as in Zoya Akhtar’s film. Bombay Talkies, because it is closer to world cinema, can help us get a sense of how much our best have learned of cinema—rather than only the Bollywood narrative tradition. The first of the four segments, directed by Karan Johar, is titled Ajeeb

Dastaan Hain Yeh. In this story, Purandar is enlisted to pay a small Gayatri (Rani Mukherjee) plays a film part. He acquits himself creditably, journalist. One day, she is accosted by but before he receives the money— a new intern named Avinash (Saqib which he needs—he remembers his Saleem) who announces that he is appointment with his daughter and ‘gay.’ Gayatri is taken in by his charm rushes home to perform for her, leavand invites him home, where he ing the money behind. For the film to meets her husband Dev (Randeep succeed, it must convince us that Hooda). The rest of the film is about Purandar sacrifices the money Avinash getting closer to Dev, who is although it is extremely important to a closet bisexual and the strain the him. Banerjee makes Rs 2,000 seem as two undergo, which includes sudden, unimportant to Purandar as it would uncontrolled violence on Dev’s part. be to a successful Bollywood star and One cannot say that the film is the story falls flat on its face. In Sheila ki Jawani by Zoya successful, because Karan Johar shows no understanding of the kind of con- Akhtar, a 12-year-old boy nurses duct socially permitted for homosexu- ambitions to be a dancer while his als, or the taboos around it. The body father (Ranvir Shorey) wants him to play football and cricklanguage exhibited by et. This film appears to the characters is all The films are have been made to wrong. For instance, based on the showcase the dancing Avinash is lewd in pubskills of Naman Jain, lic with Gayatri on their short story, the actor playing the first meeting and Rani not the epic boy—which are considMukherjee as Gayatri erable. The film sugdoes not even register surprise at such impudence from a gests that the boy could have other junior. Avinash also kisses Dev in proclivities like cross-dressing but front of his subordinates and the film does not explore this further. As it makes it seem that Dev’s reaction— stands, the film fails because it makes no point except the hackneyed one of beating him up—is unwarranted. The second story, Star, is by coercive parents. The last story Murabba is by Dibakar Banerjee, who has repeatedly emerged as an ineffective storyteller. Anurag Kashyap and is perhaps the Star features a failed actor Purandar best of the four. The director (Nawazuddin Siddiqi), who entertains depends—as he always does—on the his daughter by acting out scenes for colorfulness of the milieu the film is her. One day, he sets out on his morn- set in: the city of Allahabad and the ing rounds, promising his daughter street on which Amitabh Bachchan that he will entertain her that lives in Mumbai. Vijay’s father is ill evening. As luck has it, a film is being and wants him to take a ‘murabba’ shot on the streets of Mumbai and (fruit pickled in syrup) to Amitabh

and get him to take a bite off it. He had similarly taken a bottle of honey to Dilip Kumar when his father was expected to live only for a few days. Dilip Kumar licked at the honey and the old man lived for six years on this ‘sanctified’ honey. The half murabba brought back with Amitabh’s bite marks on it are similarly expected to help Vijay’s father. Vijay goes to Mumbai, but the security personnel do not allow him to reach Amitabh. By the time Amitabh finally obliges, the murabba is trodden upon and lost on a train. Vijay then gets a murabba with a fake Bachchan bite on it. The father sees through this, but admits that the honey he brought back from Dilip Kumar was similarly fake. The film works like a fairy tale, but Anurag Kashyap has a malevolent agent, a passenger on the train, who deliberately destroys the murabba with no motives offered. The films reveal that Bollywood’s best young filmmaking talents have not really educated themselves. The films are hardly ambitious, but all four falter at the screenplay level, which indicates a basic shortcoming. The use of real locales and identifiable character types means that the films are, unlike commercial cinema, grounded in the real world. But, the filmmakers have neither the observation required nor the ability to transform real life into valid cinema. The ‘celebration’ provided by Bombay Talkies recalls that occasioned by a hundred-year-old person who has just managed to get into high school.


on the court

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A game changer? Coming soon: The Indian Badminton League, which promises to do more for the game than the IPL did for cricket

F

Dev S Sukumar

Writer and biographer of badminton legend Prakash Padukone

or the rare ones who dislike cricket, the prospect of any sport overtaking it in India was a fantasy. With the Indian Premier League showing no signs of slowing down, and cricket occupying the living rooms of people through the year, it looked like a lost cause. Therefore, imagine my surprise when the India distributor of sports major Adidas talked of the possibility of badminton supplanting cricket as India’s No1 sport! The prophecy was ventured by Navendu Jain of Enkay India Rubber Ltd—which has been in the sports goods business for about 50 years—when asked where badminton was headed in the country. “Badminton has the ability to surpass cricket and football in India,” Jain said, while being circumspect in the same breath. “But that is some distance away.” A number of factors have coalesced to pitch badminton as a potential No 1. Of these, Jain reckons the most important will be the Indian Badminton League—the IPL-imitator which might change the way badminton is played and perceived. According to organisers Sporty Solutionz, the IBL will consist of six city-based franchises, each forking out thousands of dollars to some of the best talent worldwide. Top players stand to make at least 50,000 dollars (more than Rs 27 lakh) a season—a princely sum for those who had reconciled to staying in the shadows of multi-million dollar sports like tennis and golf. To compare it to existing prize money— singles winners of the elite Superseries events, such as the All

BOOSTER The proposed IBL could make full-time badminton viable for more than just a few star players like Saina Nehwal

England or the India Open—make between 30,000 to 40,000 dollars (Rs 16 lakh to Rs 21 lakh) after a week of exhausting matches. Nearly everything—the franchise-based model, sponsorships, media rights—have been copied from the successful example of the IPL. If the organisers are able to pull off what they have promised, badminton will suddenly transform its image; from a sport dominated by South East Asians and Chinese, to a profile that’s more India-centric. This shifting of the ‘centre of gravity’, so to say, will have other implications, such as making India an attractive destination for badminton equipment makers abroad. We are already seeing this happen. Until four years ago, Japanese company Yonex had a monopoly of the Indian market. Other companies, such as Head, Wilson and Victor, had a token presence. And then, in 2009, China’s LiNing announced its foray into India; in the last four years, it has consolidated its presence. Taipei’s Victor recently signed up Indian doubles player Ashwini Ponnappa; another company, called Apacs, is reportedly on the verge of starting business in India. But what has really excited the badminton community is the entry of Adidas, which makes it apparent that the sport has suddenly attracted the attention of global sports majors. It’s possible that the IBL did convince international companies of the prospects of the Indian market. All of this means greater commercial activi-

ty around badminton—more sponsorship for players; greater opportunities for coaches, and better deals on equipment. As Jain says, “The IBL will bring the sport to the drawing rooms. Once that happens, the outlook will change. It will bring international players to India, and that will help raise the Indian standard too… If you go back 20 years, we didn’t have the number of cricket grounds that we do now. It was after the 1983 World Cup win that cricketing infrastructure grew. We see similar potential in badminton.” When the IBL was announced last year, there was immediate worldwide buzz. A onemillion dollar badminton (Rs 56 crore) event—and that too, in India! Organisers Sporty Solutionz were confident of everything falling into place by midFebruary 2013, but the promised press conference never happened. The event itself, slated to be in July, has now been shifted to August, after the World Championships. Obviously, it has not been as easy as they anticipated. It might take hard bargaining to convince corporates to shell out thousands of dollars for a sport that has been untested for bigticket events. What does the IBL mean to Karnataka, and to Bangalore in particular? One of the six teams, Karnataka Kings, will be based in Bangalore. Depending on how the first edition goes—and whether the state will get adequate representation—the event might enthuse com-

petitive players, who are otherwise a disillusioned lot once they enter the senior level. The number of senior national tournaments is dismal, and for years players have had little to look forward to. The lucky few who get to represent the country at international tournaments are insulated from the vagaries of the national circuit. As for the others, the best they can hope for is employment in the petroleum, railways or banking sectors, which have a tradition of hiring badminton players. It is in this space that the IBL can become relevant—if a player can make a few lakhs each season, it can keep him in badminton during his prime years. Perhaps good performances in the IBL might even serve to catch the attention of the national selectors, just as the IPL has done. Bangalore was, for a while, the centre of badminton in India. Prakash Padukone’s academy drew the best badminton players to the city. However, over the last six to seven years, the talent pool from Bangalore (and Karnataka) has dried up precipitously. Padukone once remarked that it was probably because Bangalore’s middle classes had greater academic aspirations compared to other Indian cities, which explained why parents pulled their kids out of badminton training during the 9th or 10th standards. While that trend might still continue, it is possible a high profile event like the IBL might open the eyes of parents to the possibility of a career in badminton. And anything that distracts people from the frenzy of cricket should be good news.


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Rewind The week that was Á Palestine clash: Several Israeli security forces personnel were wounded by rocks during clashes with Palestinians; Palestinian president reiterates call for independent Palestinian state based on '67 border. Á Euro recession: France has slipped into recession, while Italy, the Eurozone’’s third largest economy, reported its seventh consecutive quarter of decline. Á Prison sentence: Kenneth Bae, an American citizen sentenced to 15 years of hard labour for what Pyongyang has described as hostile acts against the state started life at a special prison, state media said. Á Dutt surrender: Actor Sanjay Dutt surrendered before a special TADA court to undergo his remaining jail term in the 1993 Mumbai blasts case. Á Delhi gang rape: Delhi gang rape accused 20-yearold Vinay Sharma was beaten by his fellow prisoners and was found to be vomiting blood after being given poison, his lawyer has said. Á Gujarat U-turn: The BJP government in Gujarat has decided to put on hold its decision to seek the death sentence for the former Gujarat minister, Mayaben Kodnani, and Bajrang Dal leader Babu Bajrangi in the Naroda-Patiya massacre case. Á JD(S) gain: Even though it has the same number of MLAs as the BJP, the JD(S) was recognised as the main opposition party in the Karnataka assembly because it had gathered a higher percentage of votes. Á Yeddy in court: Former Karnataka chief minister BS Yeddyurappa and his family members appeared before a CBI Court in connection with a case allegedly involving kickbacks related to illegal mining.

Celebrating video art

International video art festival Magmart in collaboration recently organised a video art project titled ‘‘100x100=900 (100 videoartists to tell a

century).’’ They invited hundred video artists—— most of them prize winners at the festival——to interpret any one a year of the past century; as a means to archive the past, but also

to ““constitute a really global narration of 1900s.”” The artists were given complete freedom in their choice of subject or style, with the only requirement being the need to focus on a certain year of the 20th century. The videos selected for the project are being screened at Jaaga on Double Road on May 17, 18 and 19.

The NS Raghavan Centre for Entrepreneurial Learning at the Indian Institute of Management Bangalore is hosting the 2013 edition of Next Big Idea (NBI), a national business plan competition. The pre-final and the finals will be held on May 21 and 22, at IIM, Bangalore. Here’’s their website: www.nsrcel.org.

For more information on the project, log on to www.9hundred.org. For screening details, visit www.jaaga.in.

Grow plants without soil Hydroponics is the technique of growing plants without using soil, primarily intended for urban farmers. Simplified hydroponics does not require any electricity, uses materials that are inexpensive and use only 10 per cent of water when compared to conventional farming. The produce you grow using the technique is completely natural and organic. Jaaga on Double Road is hosting a simplified hydroponics workshop by the Pet Bharo project, which aims to make every home

Biz plan contest

Talking about photography… Focus Bangalore Photography Club is holding PhotoTalk, where photographers from the group speak on their work and share personal experiences and tips. This initiative aims to give insights to amateurs as well as professionals on how photographers approach their work.

sustainable in food production. The workshop, which will be held on May 25, will cost Rs 3000 per participant. On sale will be the basic material that will

allow participants to start their own hydroponic garden.

PhotoTalk will be held at Jaaga on Double Road on May 19. For more information, email Praveen at praveenphotog@gmail.com or visit www.facebook.com/focusbangalore

For more details, log on to www.petbharoproject.co.in or call Arvind Narayanan on 8971903181

Learn to make woodcut prints The National Gallery of Modern Art is holding a Workshop on woodcut print techniques on May 19, conducted by VG Venugopal (whose woodcut print is in picture) and Urmila VG. Woodcut-also known as xylography-is a technique of relief printing in which images are carved into the surface of a block of wood, wherein the part to be printed are remain at level with the surface while the rest is carved or

gallery. The collection, which consists mainly of woodcuts, etchings, lithographs and screenprints, represents over seventy-nine artists from across India. Chronologically, the works displayed range from 1916 to the present.

gouged out. The workshop is part of the Waswo X Waswo Collection of Indian Printmaking, which is currently on display at the

For more information, contact NGMA at: Manikyavelu Mansion, 49, Palace Road or call 22342338.

Music classes online

Koushik Aithal, disciple of Pandit Parameshwar Hegde and one of Bangalore’’s most talented vocalists, is teaching Hindustani classical and semiclassical music online. Want to sign up? Send an email to koushikithal@gmail.com or call 9886549910 or 9483816112.


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Forward

A market place for ‘indie’ films Indie Reign is a funding and marketing platform for independent films which is run by a group of filmmakers, designers, marketers and techies. Based in New Zealand, they also have offices in India. Filmmakers looking for advice or funding can get in touch with Indie Reign and if they select your project, it

will be put up on their website where it will be seen by investors, technicians and film lovers from all over the world. Indie Reign, which has tied up with major social

networking websites and technology companies, will also work with you in promoting and distributing the film once it is completed. Indie Reign assures filmmakers that they will retain 100 per cent ownership and control of their content. To find out more, log on to www.indiereign.com.

Greatest screen performances

To mark 100 years of Indian cinema, Forbes India magazine recently published a list of 25 most memorable performances in our screen history. The varied list includes such classic performances as

Balraj Sahni playing a quietly dignified Muslim patriarch who struggles to deal with Partition in the acclaimed Garam Hawa, Nutan in Bandini (in picture) and Amitabh Bachchan’’s fiery role in

Deewar. Refreshingly, the list does not revolve around Bollywood. Dr Rajkumar finds a place on the list with his Bangaaradha Manushya, a landmark in Kannada film history. The list also includes performances by yesteryears’’ legends like Utpal Dutt (Bhuvan Shome), Uttam Kumar (Nayak), Amjad Khan (Sholay), JV Somayajulu (Sankarabharanam) and Sivaji Ganesan (Parasakthi), as well as contemporary ones like Kamal Haasan (Mahanadi), Mohanlal (Bharatham) and Naseeruddin Shah (Sparsh).

The week ahead  Musharraf relief: Former military ruler Pervez Musharraf has some time to restrategise after a team formed to investigate him over the sacking and detention of judges in 2007 said that he cannot be tried under the Anti-Terrorism Act.

India’s first Braille magazine It’’s that rare event in the world of publishing——a magazine for the blind. White Print calls itself ““India’’s first lifestyle magazine in Braille.”” Printed at the Braille Printing Press at the National Association of the Blind, Mumbai, the magazine carries inspirational stories, reviews of audio books and gadgets aimed at the blind, fiction, travel and food related columns etc. There are 12 million visually impaired people in India, of whom 56 lakh are literate——the audience the magazine is aimed at. The brainchild of 24-year-old Mumbai entrepreneur Upasana Makati, the English monthly magazine is priced at Rs 30 per issue, and annual subscriptions are available at Rs 300 for 12 issues. To subscribe, write to upasana@whiteprint.in

An evening of Kalaripayattu

Lungi power

Kalari Academy of Performing Arts (KAPA) recently presented an event, ‘‘Kalari Buds,’’ an evening of kalarippayattu featuring the child students of the academy. The performance was the culmination of a residential camp conducted at the academy, which sought to combine contemporary dance with the ancient martial art form of Kerala. The highlight of the evening was a performance entitled Mriga——its movements inspired by animals like lion, horse and peacock—— choreographed by internationally acclaimed contemporary dancer Veena Basavarajaiah, who lived with the children at

The Green Lungi Movement wants you to be ““awake””; to issues of the day, that is. Never mind what that has to do with a lungi, but their mission is to make people aware of local and global problems and events. Their inspiration is rather lofty: ancient Greek philosopher Aristotle’’s dictum that ““The ultimate value of life depends upon awareness and the power of contemplation rather than upon mere survival.”” But they don’’t limit themselves to spreading the word, they also initiate action, as with their upcoming garbage cleanup drive in collaboration with the Indian Army (ASC Centre North) in Koramangala.

the camp. The children also residential course where performed Break Time: The students stay at their hostel and learn the martial art. Art of Combat. The monthly fee for this Founded by Ranjan course is Rs 1,000. Mullaratt, KAPA offers For more information, log regular Kalaripayattu on to www.kalarigurukulam. classes on weekends as com or call 9945155995 well as a short term

For more information, visit www.facebook.com/GreenLungi or write to them at thegreenlungi@gmail.com

 Visa rush: A UK visa rush is on the cards with Britain rolling out a same-day visa facility for Indians. The firstof-of-its-kind service to be launched by the UK anywhere in the world comes at a price: £600 (nearly Rs 50,000) in addition to the price of the visa.  Taiwan tension: Taiwan and Phillipines are headed for turbulent times after a Taiwanese fisherman was shot dead by Filipino coastguards.  CBI cleanup: A highpowered Group of Ministers (GoM) is at work on how to free the CBI from external influence.  Maritime vigil: India will intensify maritime patrolling after inducting its first Boeing Poseidon-8I aircraft, which will boost long range maritime snooping and warfare capability, into the Navy at its air station INS Rajali.  Food security: Amid talk of an ordinance on the Food Security Bill, the law ministry has said a proper mechanism has to be in place to distribute food grains only after which a law should be implemented.  RTE drive: Bangalore schools are putting in place remedial classes, counselling sessions, subject-specific training and seeking the help of residential teachers to ensure that poor students are admitted under the RTE quota.  Water crisis: An acute water crisis looms over Bangalore city as water levels in the Krishnarajasagar, the city’’s major source of water to Bangalore are just one feet below the dead storage level of 65 feet.


OOKtalk

talk|23 may 2013|talkmag.in

22

Interview

Silence reigns in Halahala Graphic novelist Appupen’s new work tells a layered story set in a mythical kingdom, of which we will see much more, he says PRACHI SIBAL

prachi.sibal@talkmag.in

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usician-turned-graphic novelist George Mathen, who goes by the nom de plume Appupen, has released his second book Legends of Halahala. His previous work Moonward (published by Blaft in 2009) had introduced readers to the mythical world of Halahala and also set the stage for the second novel. Legends is a silent graphic novel that uses only artwork to tell five compact stories. In effect, it bypasses the customary experience of reading, and often requires you to tilt the book or bend forward and pore over the details to follow the story. For all that, you don’t miss those speech/ thought bubbles you automatically expect to see on the page. In fact, the lack of text makes you want to return to the book again and discover the

‘‘Bollywood has taken over music’’

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Questions

Stanley Pinto, Musician Reactions, statements, accusations, complaints, or just straight talk—this is where you get them all

In Moonward, many pashidden signs in the graphics that sages were silent. When I jot add layers to story. Appupen relies on a mix of down my stories, I do little scribsimple and contemporary themes bles with no words, and realised that the stories work in his visual narrative. without words. Besides While there are univerbeing an artist, I am a sal ones like love and collector of comic despair, there are some books. A woodcut more contemporary artist of the 1930s who ones like consumerism worked on silent stoand superheroes. ries and some current Stupid’s Arrow, the first European artists one, is a love story, inspired me. I was where an arrow that enjoying silent reading hits the wrong target HarperCollins and saw it as a new lanwreaks havoc in a king- Rs 499 dom and eventually leads to war. guage. It is the very basic form of Oberian Dysphoria too dwells on storytelling. Frankly, for me, it the theme of love and separation. was no conscious effort to go The Accordian Manoeuvre, the last silent. story in the book, is easily the most gripping one. By telling the Did it offer any advantages, story of a celebrity who earns fans artistically? How is across Halahala owing to her Legends different in its physical attributes, Appupen sub- basics from your tly addresses larger issues of a previous graphic work, world fixated on perfect bodies. Moonward? After Moonward, The Saga of Ghostgirl, done appropriately in black and white for which I never imagmost, has a sudden burst of ined would be I colour to mark a turn in the plot. published, We couldn’t help but notice went and sat on a small sketch of the author/artist a beach in himself on the dedications page, Gokarna to do with lettering on the shirt that more stories from said ‘The Dead Fish Band’ Halahala. The ten (Mathen was part of now dis- stories I made banded city-based alternative were all silent, five rock band The Lounge Piranha). have been published In an interview, Mathen tells in Legends and the Talk that the decision to go silent other five will be in his new work was not a con- part of Legends 2. The first story, scious one. Excerpts: Moonward is dark and addresses larger Why did you decide to go silent in issues but not the Legends?

What made you take up music professionally at the age of 50? I have been involved with music from the age of three. Music has always been part of my life. I had thought just music would be enough for my entire life, but later I realised education was important too. So at 21, I quit music and continued my education. Then I joined an advertising firm and served for 33 years. Later, I got back to what I’’m doing now. Was putting together your Sinatra tribute a challenge? You can expect a good two hour

snapshot essay of the great man and his life. It is an audio-visual show and it is going to be historical. I find no great challenge. I’’m good at what I do. I have been a fan of Sinatra for more than 50 years. It’’s celebrating a man’’s talent and skill. It’’s not a challenge, it’’s a delight. What do you think is going wrong for music in Bangalore? And what’’s going right? Not just in Bangalore, but in all of India, music is no more as we knew it. In the 1960’’s and 70’’s, every major city had a dozen night clubs and we were equivalent to international cities. But

characters’ personal spaces. In this, I had more freedom to build into the world of Halahala. I wanted to break the image of the world created in the first book. I realised, ‘love’ in Halahala was not explored. Also, there was the temptation of spoofing the portrayal of love in mythical texts. Are you open to different interpretations of Legends, as is likely to happen with a silent novel? So far, I think people have been careful in telling me their interpretations. All those I have heard have not been too far off. There are clues in the stories. I let you imagine on your own, but I’m also careful that you don’t stray too far. I try and keep you more or less in the zone that I want. Do you intend to stay in Halahala or are you imagining newer mythical worlds? I will stay in Halahala now. I am currently building Halahala. It is not even a convincing world yet, it will take more books. My next book after Legends 2 will be Aspyrus, the story of a beautiful flying creature that takes over Halahala. Appupen’s original artwork is on display at Five Forty Five gallery, Indiranagar Stage II till June 7

today Bollywood has taken over and people’’s taste is inclined towards that. There are two kinds of music; first is what appeals to your waist up——you feel the music through your heart and mind. The second is what appeals to you waist down——the music you jiggle about below your pelvis, which is nonsensical. The good thing is that, in spite of the hurdles, youngsters still stick to music.

MARIA LAVEENA

Stanley Pinto was a jazz singer and musician till the age of 21, when he took up a career in advertising. He got back to music after he quit corporate life. On May 18, Jagriti Theatre will host Pinto’s tribute to Frank Sinatra, the legendary American singer and actor.


talk|23 may 2013|talkmag.in

23

A guide to the married life True compatibility is not based on one or the other trait, but a deep physical and mental synergy, says Sensei Avinash Subramanyam

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true marriage or live-in relationship is a combination of physical synergy, empathy, chemical balance and auras. It also calls for a union of the senses of look, smell, taste, and touch. Unfortunately, few people even seem to consider this. Mostly, people marry because of their need to please their families. Sometimes, it’s just the hormones, or casual meetings that develop into friendship and culminate in marriage. I have realised through experience that such marriages don’t work because a single factor like looks, intellect or sexual compatibility is not enough to fulfil a relationship. A man falls in love with a beautiful girl, but their ways of life might not match. She might be selfish and materialistic. A man with fine intellect could have bad breath. While picking up clothes, we go not just by looks but also by texture. A dish on the menu might have a nice name, and look good, but taste awful. That’s why the Chinese masters said a complete dish is one that draws you by its look, smell and taste, and the crockery it’s served in. Not that two people should like the very same things—that can get boring—but synergy should happen at a deeper level.

Common problems

Here are some common problems with marriage: the man and the woman lead independent lives and marriage is just one of the many things in their scheme of things, perhaps an arrangement for sex or security. But how many actually find sexual fulfilment in marriage? For a man, satisfaction is easy. But for a woman, it works differently. How many couples have the patience to understand the sensitivities of their bodies? In an arranged marriage, couple’s needs rarely blend. One of them

expects the other to adapt and compromise—you eat my kind of food, you adapt to my family. Take a silly example like eating out at a restaurant—one will ask the other to share the dish because ‘Why waste?’ Not that love marriages are any better. During courtship you notice shortcomings but compromise. Only when you are married do you realise that the compromise is for life. As long as you know you can quit, you stay. But, the moment you know you can’t quit, you find it difficult to stay. That is a strange paradox.

How to find compatibility

Real compatibility can be achieved in three ways: One, you become a mirror to the other person. You reflect the other’s likes and dislikes. Two, you mutually love each other’s ways. Three, you find out and finetune the energies of two people. In budo, you can discern this from spiritual insight. A practical method for others is for the two concerned individuals to honestly share their likes and dislikes. See if they like to do the same things. It’s worth the time to out before you commit to a relationship. Is total synergy of the body and mind between two people possible? No. You should be fine that the other person drinks, but not a bottle; that he smokes, but not a packet; that she

Way of Budo 33

parties, but not all week. You should like the other’s way of life at least 10 per cent each in its different facets. The only thing that is a no-no is an intimate relationship with other men and women. Make it clear that you are married and not available. Don’t let friendships destroy your marriage. Don’t indulge in verbal or physical intimacy outside of marriage if you want marriage to work. Practise towards achieving synergy. Allow yourself to like everything the other does. Never once ask the other to do what you want, except if it is good for the other in budo or on a spiritual path. Let the other try the path for a while. Never impose; only suggest. If one is a Hindu and the other a Christian, don’t insist the children should belong to one of the two religions. Saying let one be Hindu and the other a Christian is also not a good arrangement. Marriage is not a business deal. What must you avoid to nurture your relationship? It is, more often than not, a person’s speech and action that causes problems.

Unseen negative force

Never repel a gesture of love—a hug, kiss, handshake, ruffle of hair, smile. If a husband says “Hi, darling” and the wife reacts in a cold manner, he can get put off. If she does it often enough, he might never be able to say “Hi, darling” again. If the woman turns her face away every time her husband tries to kiss her, his body will soon resist wanting to kiss her. It’s like you can’t go near a dog that has snarled at you. Another example: I

feed strays in my neighbourhood. Sometimes they bark and fight in the middle of the night in front of my door. This could wake up the neighbours. So I stop their fight by throwing water at them. These days, as soon as I open the door, they stop barking and run away. It’s possible that a wife is upset because the husband said the food she had cooked did not taste good. If the man then extends his hand in apology, it’s ok not to accept the apology, but she shouldn’t repel the hand. Be aware of what you say and how you react. Fights separate the mind and the body from each other. Say you were hurt and he was in the wrong, don’t be vicious. Don’t be cold with your eyes. Show pain, but don’t show harshness. Never use information told to you in trust against your spouse. If your spouse has told you about an affair before marriage, don’t misuse it when things turn sour. Say, a man breaks his wife’s favourite mug. He is initially scared to tell her but later accepts his mistake. At a later stage, when something is found broken, she shouldn’t say, “Must be your doing.” This is a threshold you should not cross in any close relationship. Information told by a friend on trust should not be revealed even if you turn enemies. Next Week: Why you should never take your spouse for granted Transcribed by Radhika P You can write to Sensei at: seefarwellnessorg@yahoo.com


L I S T I NGS

talk|23 may 2013|talkmag.in

cooking demo

music

 Master class: Watch MasterChef finalist Shazia Khan dabble with different cuisines and showcase her culinary skills. You can interact with her and sample some of her award-winning recipes. She will also teach you to prepare 100 percent vegetarian dishes. After the demo you can enjoy a delicious vegetarian lunch buffet that unites western flavours with eastern spices. The Chancery Pavilion, 135, Residency Road, May 18, 11.00 am to 2 pm 41414141

 Parallel strings : Veenai Jayanthi Kumaresh and Madras pianist Anil Srinivasan present a concert with a unique concept - classic Beethoven meets Thyagaraja. Get enchanted by the two different genres of music merging with the soft, melodic sounds of the veena and piano. Chowdaiah Memorial Hall, 16th cross, Gayathri Devi Park Extension, 2nd Main Road, Malleshwaram, May 17, 7.00 pm 9243777970  Energetic weekends: Watch Live Banned perform this weekend with Amrit Rao on vocals, Sridhar Varadarajan on guitars, Siddhart Kamath on keyboard, Dheerendra Doss on drums with Raveesh Tirkey on bass. Their performance is sure to be bold, flamboyant and energetic. Bak Bak Bar, No. 1, Kira Layout, Koramangala, May 17, 8.30 pm 8792000392  Musical evening: Components like Jazz, Indian Classical, Latin and World music make up this global fusion band. Led by Rajeev Raja, popularJazz and fusion flautists. The band performs powerful rhythms, fluid melodies, and spontaneous syncopations. CounterCulture, #2D2, 4th

Live Banned

cross, Dyavasandra Industrial Area, Whitefield Road, May 18, 9.00 pm 41400793 Â Say hola this weekend: Wallow in a rapturous evening of choral music by Spanish composers this weekend. Presented by the Majolly Music Trust, the music ranges from the middle ages to contemporary tunes. Alliance Francaise de Bangalore, 108, Thimmaiah Road, Vasanth Nagar, May 18, 7.00 pm 8123394498 Â Remembering Ol’ Blue Eyes: Watch Stanley Pinto share

the stage with a piano, talk about Frank Sinatra and perform and pay tribute to the legend. The inimitable Pinto has been a jazz singer and musician for five years. Jagriti Theatre, Ramagondanahalli, Varthur Road, Whitefield, May 18, 8.00 pm 41248298 Â Music for a cause: The anti-tobacco message band, Tough on Tobacco advocates anti-smoking because it’s hard to quit once you start! Singer-songwriter, Sid Coutto’s talent packed, genre-bending, and convention defying band’s music is a mix of pop, rock and reggae. Watch Siddhart on vocals and rhythm guitar,

Johan Pais on bass guitar, Jai Row Kavi on drums, Gaurav Gupta and Niranjan Dhar on guitars. Hard Rock Café, 40, St. Marks Road, May 23, 7.30 pm 9243777970 Â Folk with a twist: Whirling Kalapas is here to perfrom this weekend. Witness the acoustic based trio, lead vocalist Uday Benegal and backing vocalists Mahesh Tinaikar and Sankarshan Kini perform with their acoustic guitars and Kini also on percussion, violin and mandolin. Their neo-folk, alt-country and funky-acoustic rock music and the band’s vocally and instrumentally lush sound

has gathered praise from around the country. bFlat Bar, 100 Feet Road, Above ING Bank, HAL 2nd stage, Indiranagar, May 17, 8.30 pm 41739250 Â Its classic weekend: Classic Wild brings diverse musicians from Bangalore who will perform hits from the early 70’s to 90’s like retro, funk, blues and ballads. Sanjay Chandrakanth, Vineesh Venugopal,Raj Sampath, Gerard Roy, Danny Jakes make up the band. Performing with them will be singer Arati Rao. bFlat Bar, 100 Feet Road, Above ING Bank, HAL 2nd stage, Indiranagar, May 19, 8 pm 25278361

retail therapy

food Mediterranean spice markets. The buffet selection brings to mind the legendary aura of Cairo’s Khanel Khalili, Istanbul’s spice market, Old Delhi’s Khari Baoli, Cochin’s spice market and is served with unlimited beer. Mynt, Taj West End, Race Course Road, May 18 66605660

 For the vegans: Watch the chefs of Soul Kadhi and Sushmita Subbaraju of the Veganosaurus blog, demonstrate vegan cooking. You can enjoy the spread thereafter. The event is priced at Rs 500 per person (inclusive of taxes). The special vegan menu includes tofu paneer tikka, kadhi pakoda, malai kofta and a lot more. Soul Kadhi Restaurant, #3 Laurel Lane, Behind Lakme Salon, Richmond Town, May 18, 12.00 pm onwards 9686601021

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 Taste of the Mediterranean: Relish the dinner buffet at Café Mozaic’s outdoors. The Mediterranean region menu includes shawarmas, freshly baked pita breads, Lebanese style grills, Arabic delicacies and traditional desserts. Café Mozaic, Vivanta by Taj, Lobby Level, 41/3 MG Road, May 17 66604444  Spicy weekend: Savour the choicest cuisine, inspired by the ambience of

 Mexican delight: California Pizza Kitchen brings to you authentic food, foot tapping Latin music and refreshing margaritas and much more celebrating Mexico’s favorite holiday, Cinco de Mayo. The special menu promises a taste of the best of the Mexican cuisine with a Californian twist. Get a taste of delights like fire roasted paneer enchiladas, tortilla

nership with Bwitch brings to you a youthful and fashionable lingerie brand. It comprises of lingerie sets, camisoles, capris, bandeau bras and panty packs which are priced between Rs.699 to Rs 1599. For more information you can log on to www.mtv.in.com

triangle samplers, spicy chicken salad and more. Available at all California Pizza Kitchen outlets, May 19 Â Food for thought: Join the Toscano chefs and learn their way of making a complete summer meal. Impress your friends and loved ones with chilled cucumber and yoghurt soup or a prawn entrée with couscous salad. After the demo, you can dig in freshly baked pastries with coffee, lunch and receive class-related recipes. Toscano, 2nd Floor, UB City, Vittal Mallya Road, May 22 41738800 Â For fitness freaks: Enjoy an invigorating yoga session followed by a sinful indulgence—a healthy yet sinfully delectable brunch, without the calories of course. This way you can follow your exercise regime as well as give in to the cravings. Escape Hotel and Spa, 770 100 Feet Road, 12th Main, HAL 2nd stage, Indiranagar, May 18 42415555

 Dazzle in summer: Choose from a range of free spirited tunics, blousons and dresses that can be teamed with denims, shorts or leggings giving you a perfect summer look to create a unique independent style. Available at all 109° F outlets

 Tough gear: For the adventure lover in you, Wrangler presents ‘Tough Gear’ which offers comfort, style and protection from abrasion to its wearers. The jeans are available in two

options, Tough Gear 2x and Tough Gear 4x. Available at all Wrangler outlets  Look youthful: Ladies, get ready to show off as MTV in part-

 Dress to kill: Going out with friends or your loved ones and confused what to wear? Then choose from the limited edition summer collection by Van Heusen. The collection is crafted from sophisticated fabrics and contemporary cuts keeping in mind the summer season. Available at all Van Huesen outlets.


L I S T I NGS

talk|23 may 2013|talkmag.in

theatre

kids’ delight  Kiddie fun: Children from 8 to 18 can have a blast at the Jagriti Theatre's first summer carnival as it comes alive with stalls, performances, music and workshops. The workshops have been divided according to the age groups where they can learn while having fun. For ages 8-11: Workshops on puppetry, story-writing, art, toy making and more. For ages 12-15: Workshops on stage combat, juggling, magic and more. For ages 16-18: Workshops on film making, photography, clowning and more. Children can also enjoy plays like Jujubee during the carnival. Cost: Rs 750/ Rs 1000 Jagriti Theatre, Varthur Road, Ramagondanahalli, Whitefield, May 17 to June 2, 11 am to 4 pm 41248298

To get your event listed, write to us at listings@talkmag.in

PS I Don’t Love You

 Narigaligeke Kodilla? Based on a short story by Kuvempu published fifty years ago, the play conveys the juxtaposition of kindness and ruggedness in nature. With characters like male and female sparrow, fox, bear, tiger and owl, the writer emphasises that protecting is more important than killing. The play is directed by Mangala N. Ranga Shankara, 36/2, 8th Cross, 2nd Phase, JP Nagar, May 17 and 18, 7.30 pm 26493982  The Fabulous Adventures of Aditi and Friends: A monkey, an ant, an elephant, two dragons and a little girl set off to rescue their friend from the clutches of an unreasonable giant. The bilingual (English and Kannada) narrative set in the present day contains all the flavours of a fairytale. Directed by Anish Victor, this play by the Rafiki theatre group has Aruna Manjunath, Ashiqa Salvan, Ravindra Vijay, Rency Philip, Ruchi Ravindran and Sunaina in the cast. Gambolla Kids Club, SBI Bank Road, Off St. Marks Road, Behind India Garage, May 18

and 19, 5.00 pm

7.30 pm 41231340

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 Pinocchio: A doll carved out of a wood piece is characterised as an innocent and naughty boy, having thoughts similar to the current generation children. The play is a musical that entertains and teaches morals based on this age old story. Directed by Vijay B, the cast has Rahul, Vijay, Vasavi, Danush, Nagaraj, Srinivas, Shobha, Prasanna, Yuvaraj, Apoorva and Sathyashri. Ranga Shankara, 36/2, 8th Cross, 2nd Phase, JP Nagar, May 19, 7.30 pm

 PS I Don't Love You: The play is a romantic comedy that revolves around characters common yet distinct at the same time. Directed by Abhishek Iyengar the cast has Nagashree DM, Anup Shenoy, Sushanth Shandilya, Ajit Vishwanath, Prachi Jain, Anirudh Mahesh, Divya Dev, Gowtham Shravan Kumar, Abhiram Balamukund, Neha Agrawal. Ranga Shankara, 36/2, 8th Cross, 2nd Phase, JP Nagar, May 21, 7.30 pm 26493982

42058980

 Cops, Tints and Other Things: This is the good, bad and ugly of Bangalore. Eight stories with Bangalore as the common link, the play portrays the idiosyncrasies of the city in a quirky and humorous way. Directed by Chaitanya, the cast includes Chaitanya, Ishan, Shubra, Parul, Anjali, Abhishek, Karan B, Vamsi, Merylin and Aditi S. Alliance Francaise de Bangalore, 108 Thimmaiah Road, Vasanthnagar, May 19,

film

 Aurangzeb Hindi Yashwardhan, under the guise of a respected citizen, runs a parallel world as Emperor. To bring him down Vishal is planted in Yashwardhan's world in place of Ajay. But the series of events that unravel is more than Vishal bargained for and he finds himself in a predicament that puts him to the test. Aurangzeb is all about a world where kingship knows no kinship and where there can be only one emperor. Directed by Atul Sabharwal it has Arjun Kapoor, Jackie Shroff, Amrita Singh, Rishi

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 SIC—a W.I.P Theo—the amusement park music composer, Babette— the ever broke writer and Frank—the queer, aspiring auctioneer trudge through the biting emptiness of big city life, discussing, flirting, sharing their dreams and planning their futures in the doorways and shared hallway of their apartment. Directed by Sharanya Ramprakash, the play has Swetanshu Bora, Surabhi Herur, Tavish Bhattacharyya. Ranga Shankara, 36/2, 8th Cross, 2nd Phase, JP Nagar, May 22 and 23, 7.30 pm, 26493982

The Great Gatsby

Kapoor, Sasha Aagha, Sikander Kher and Deepti Naval in the cast. Innovative Multiplex, Marathahalli -11.30 am, 2.10 pm, 4.45, 7.25, 10 Rex Theatre -2.55 pm, 9.55 Cauvery Theatre, Sankey Road- 2.30 pm, 6.00 , 9.30 Kamakya Cinema, Banshankari- 11.15 am, 2.30 pm, 6.15 , 9.30 Everest Theatre, Frazer Town- 11.30 am, 2.30 pm, 6.30, 9.30 Fame Forum Value Mall, Whitefield- 10 am, 12.45 pm, 3.30, 4.30 6.15, 7.15, 9.25 Fame Shankarnag, MG Road11.05 am, 4.10 pm, 9.15 Gopalan Cinemas, Bannerghatta Road- 10 am,

5.20 pm, 10 Â I Don't Love U Hindi Yuvaan, a young handsome boy and Aarya, an NRI girl get lost in the heat of the moment and their curiosity to discover each other closely lands them in a devastatingly ugly situation which shatters their lives completely. Yuvaan decides to fight back and change circumstances to win his love and get his life back on track. The movie also lays emphasis on the potential role of media in a common man's life. Directed by Amit Kasaria it has Ruslaan Mumtaz, Deepraj

Rana, Ravi Gosain, Chetna Pande, Murli Sharma, Ragesh Asthanaa, Ravi Khemu in the cast. Innovative Multiplex , Marathahalli- 12.00 pm Gopalan Grand Mall, Old Madras Road- 10 am, 5.30 pm CineMAX, Central Mall, Bellandur- 10.50 am Fame Forum Value Mall, Whitefield- 11.15 am Gopalan Cinemas, Bannerghatta Road- 11.50 am  The Great Gatsby (3D) English Chasing his own American Dream, Nick Carraway a would-be writer leaves the Midwest and comes to

New York. He lands next doors to a mysterious, party-throwing millionaire, Jay Gatsby and across the bay from his cousin, Daisy, and her philandering, blueblooded husband, Tom Buchanan. Thus drawn into the world of the super-rich he pens a tale of impossible love, incorruptible dreams and highoctane tragedy and holds a mirror to our own modern times and struggles. Written by Baz Luhrmann and Craig Pearce based on F Scott Fitzgerald’s novel, it has Leonardo DiCaprio, Carey Mulligan, Tobey Maguire, Amitabh Bachchan, Joel Edgerton and Isla Fisher. Rex Theatre- 7.20 pm, Urvashi Digital 4K Cinema9.45 pm Fame Forum Value Mall, Whitefield- 10 am, 12.15 pm, 3.15, 6.15, 9.15 Gopalan Cinemas, Bannerghatta Road3 pm, 10 Â The Reluctant Fundamentalist English The movie is about a Pakistani boy who is trying to make it big in the corporate world on Wall Street. He then finds himself embroiled in a conflict between his American dream, a hostage crisis and a call of his family`s homeland. The movie is based on the novel by

Mohsin Hamid by the same name. Directed by Mira Nair the film has Kate Hudson, Kiefer Sutherland, Liev Schreiber, Martin Donovan, Riz Ahmed, Om Puri, Christopher Nicholas Smith , Shabana Azmi, Haluk Bilginer and Adil Hussain in the lead. CineMAX, Central Mall, Bellandur- 4.50 pm, 9.50 Fame Forum Value Mall, Whitefield- 1.35 pm, 9.30 Â Epic (3D) English A battle is raging between the forces of good who protect nature and the forces of evil who are bent on destroying it. When a teenage girl finds herself magically transported to this secret universe, she must band together with a rag-tag team of fun and unique characters to save their world and ours. Directed by Chris Wedge, Epic has Amanda Seyfried, Josh Hutcherson, Beyoncé Knowles lending their voices. Innovative Multiplex, Marathahalli11.45 am, 1.45 pm, 6.00, 8.00 Rex Theatre1.05 pm, 5.30 pm; Urvashi Digital

4K Cinema 11.30 am, 3.00 pm, 6.30 Cauvery Theatre, Sankey Road- 11.00 am, 1.00 pm Manasa Digital 2K Cinema, Konanakunte 1.30 pm, 4.15 pm  Khumba Rashi Kannada This Kannada film directed by Chandrahasa has Chetan Chandra and Rupika in the lead roles. The film is produced by Naganna Sidhu Patil and music is composed by Srivatsa. Kapali- 10.30 am, 1.30 pm , 4.30, 7.30, Navarang10.30 am, 1.30 pm , 4.30, 7.30, Nandini- 10.30 am, 1.30 pm ,4.30, 7.30, Nalanda- 10.30 am, 1.30 pm, 4.30, 7.30, Vishal10.30 am, 1.30 pm , 4.30, 7.30

Khumba Rashi


american desis

talk|23 may 2013|talkmag.in

26

CARNATIC STATES (Right & facing page) The IFAASD festival has emerged as one of the biggest Carnatic events outside India

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Sushumna Kannan

is affiliated to San Diego State University, San Diego

s India gets a tad more Westernised every day, curious stuff is happening in the US. Among the NRIs, Carnatic music is gaining popularity and flourishing. In the US city I moved to a few months ago, about 750 people pay 200-odd dollars for a year-long engagement with Carnatic music through the Indian Fine Arts Academy of San Diego (IFAASD). Numerous concerts are arranged through the IFAASD every year, and a majority are Carnatic music concerts. The week-long festival this year had so many more Carnatic treats that I felt I was given a crash course, and could suddenly identify more ragas than before. Carnatic music festivals are organised in any number of cities across the US. Musicians from India typically make a 10-week tour, performing mostly to packed audiences. Is this tryst with Carnatic music for real or is it merely a romance? While as Indians, we are busy fighting rising prices and corruption, something is up with the software engineers who travelled to places like the USA. It has something to do with the leisure available here (no traffic jams at least), and the perspective made possible by the distance. An interest in learning about the different aspects of India’s culture sans the pressure to appear hip, which still bugs Indians living in India. As a

Carnatic in California

Indians at home may take their culture for granted, but among those in the US, there’s a pervading cultural hunger. The weeklong festival at the Indian Fine Arts Academy of San Diego is just one of the many ways to satiate that hunger

result of this, perhaps, rich diasporic Indians have begun to fund departments of Hindu studies in American universities, while software engineers are reading up on the Vedas, doing yoga and rediscovering, among tons of other things, Carnatic music. The present generation seems to enjoy the luxury of intellectual pursuit that people a generation ago could not afford. This generation wants to know why ‘we’ are this way and not that. And if you are still the Marxist yet to be converted into Buddhism by age 30, know that there is a ‘we’ despite class, caste, gender, regional, linguistic and other differences, despite the fact we came into being as a nation only six decades ago. They will also tell you that nationali-

ty is a European construct and does not matter. And that culture is what you are accessing when you are listening to Carnatic music, even if definitions are murky. “There is a greater cultural hunger in diasporic Indians,” says Deepti Navaratna, a music teacher in Boston, originally from Bangalore. “Also, identity is a big thing in America.”

Students and teachers More than 100 young students learn Carnatic music in San Diego alone and the IFAASD hopes to follow the footsteps of Cleveland and its aradhana tradition and expand its work. Many concert attendees here are the parents of children who are learning.

And the children bring notebooks into which they dutifully enter kritis and their ragas. Occasionally, you will get to see a small bespectacled girl or boy putting a hand up to identify the raga just sung by the performer. And they get it right! Parents take the effort to bring their children to class and oversee their practice. Navaratna says, “The students are able to value our tradition while holding a multicultural perspective.” And students make very good use of growing technology, says my sister-in-law Geethanjali Iyengar, who has been teaching in Austin for two decades. There are web resources that provide notations, lyrics and basics. Additionally, YouTube and other music websites make classes and compositions available. Dr CM Venkatachalam, a music teacher in San Diego, mentors about 60 students from the age of six. They learn for 10 years and may continue into their college years through Skype. “The demand for teachers is so high that about 40 students are waitlisted,” says Venkatachalam. According to him, children of fourfive years like to listen, while at age seven, they realise music requires serious effort. “I have students who practise for two hours before starting for school. And there are others who listen to the lessons while in the car and then sing for me,” he says. Students in the US have a lot


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more distractions unlike, perhaps, those in India. Some are busy with karate, swimming, tennis, chess and even golf. “Yet, children in India may ignore Carnatic music because it’s easily available,” he says. Children in the US learn Western instruments (guitar, clarionet, keyboard ) as part of the school curriculum. It’s a compulsory subject that is graded. Iyengar and Navaratna both say students learn keenly, and the ones learning dance quickly present arangetrams (debut shows). Friends enrol. “They hang out together after classes and even perform together,” says Iyengar. Teachers estimate about 25 per cent of the students are serious while the rest are forced by parents to take up classes. And yet, the audience here is traditional enough to sometimes squirm a little at the innovations of artistes like GaneshKumaresh, and at L Subramanian’s world music and jazz-Carnatic jugalbandis. Music teachers also learn from other senior musicians in India who teach through Skype— Neyveli Santhanagopalan and Chitraveena Ravikiran are teachers known to generously do so. One may already know of John Higgins, the late American singer of Carnatic music, and students at the Wesleyan Centre performing at the Tyagaraja Aradhana in Cleveland in 2009 (look up their performance on YouTube). The other end of the spectrum is students travelling back to India to master Carnatic music. Sandeep Narayan, though born and bred in the US, moved back to Chennai and so did dancer Mythili Prakash. But dissent is there, too. A singer and teacher who doesn’t want to be identified says, “There is fierce competition to win prizes in Cleveland, parents are crazy about

FLAG BEARERS (From left) Deepti Navaratna, Dr CM Venkatachalam and Cleveland Sundaram

arangetrams and trikala pallavis. The gurus are branded on how many prizes they win in local competitions. It’s such a rat race at some level. I feel it’s really fiercer here than in India.”

Perhaps it’s another kind of rat race for young musicians to be selected by Sundaram of the Cleveland Aradhana (fondly called Cleveland Sundaram) to perform in the USA! The artistes are hosted at Indian homes and a circuit, quite complex and organised, makes sure artistes perform The week-long festival This year, well-known artistes such as in as many places as possible. Travel fare is Lakshmi Shankar, Sikkil Mala a problem, though. Organisations like the Chandrashekhar, Charumati IFAASD are non-profits and borrow visitRamachandran, Malladi Brothers, Gayathri ing artistes and negotiate festival schedules Venkatraghavan, Ajoy Chakraborty and with other organisations. Venkatachalam, Tanmay Bose were among those who per- also the director of the IFAASD, says, “We formed at the festival. Some 86 artistes don’t bring artistes from India. We invite travelled from India, Canada and other them only when they are here.” The hosting arrangements remind me parts of the US to stage Bharatanatyam of yesteryears. My parentsballets and music concerts in-law, connoisseurs of at the festival which honIt's such a rat music, belonged to a generoured Pandit Ravi Shankar. race. It's really ation that believed that this Young and ripe-old artistes devotional music equalled were all on stage, invoking fiercer here the purest forms of spiritual kritis a few centuries old or than in India sadhana. To simply listen to presenting their own comit was enough and there positions as a tribute to Ravi Shankar who had made San Diego his were no expectations for either hosting musicians or giving them gifts—except home. The festival is also a time for the semi- perhaps that they sing a song or two before literate in music to dress up and show off starting for a concert venue. Female their latest purchases from their trip to artistes who performed at the festival this India—saris, jewellery etc. But a whole lot time had strings of jasmine in their hair, are as modestly dressed as possible, in a gifts from residents here. If you didn’t look at the organised parking lot outside, you pair of jeans and tees. For artistes who travel from India, the might think for a moment you were in festival means prestige and recognition. India, the Californian weather only adding

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to the similarities! Navaratna, not yet performing in the Cleveland concert circuit, says, “Local artistes are left to find their own ways to capture the stage!” She holds a number of music grants and fellowships from US universities and has been part of many collaborative attempts. My husband, whose interest in Carnatic music revived only after he travelled West, is today a full-fledged rasika. He is not only interested in music but also reads up on rituals and festivals and deeper forms of spiritual sadhana hoping to make up for lost time. There is a tradition of scholarship in the West that studies Hinduism. There is no such in India. In the name of secularism, we do not study any religions. While the tradition of such study emerged from Christian universities in the USA, it has somewhat diversified now to other cultures and religions. Students do a course on world religions from the undergraduate level and study Hinduism. The Jewish Community Center, the venue for the festival, is beautiful, yes, but why can’t Indians have such a centre? A fellow-rasika tells me it is because Indians like to save money and return to India sooner or later, unlike the people of other communities who see no gain in returning. The lives of many NRIs are intertwined with the story of Carnatic music. Concerts are attended by luminaries such as Dr VS Ramachandran, the neuroscientist, and Ravi Shankar until recently. The San Diego festival is well-attended by Americans as well. We saw many Americans and their children enjoying the music, applying appropriate talams. How is this possible? It’s the result of a genuine interest in other cultures. And the well-maintained libraries that give you free information about almost anything you would like to learn. Bud, an American who hadn’t missed a single concert, like us, said Carnatic music had not been disturbed despite several invasions, and hence, was precious. The Trichur Brothers shone the brightest at this year’s festival. Other notable performances were by Trichur V Ramachandran and K Gayathri. But what also rocked was the combination of singers worked out by Cleveland Sundaram. Brothers or sisters singing in pairs brought to the fore layered music. We saw a conscious effort of getting together singers with different timbres. For instance, Amruta Murali and Sankari Krishnan nicely contrasted, countered and supported each other. “There is no gender problem on the Carnatic stage, eh?” whispered my husband as we watched Amruta Murali, Ranjani Ramakrishnan and Akkarai Subhalakshmi—all women on the violin— accompany beautifully in concert after concert. It was true. There was just one thing—music!


memoir

A rare disorder, a weird remedy

An intimate friendship between a rich man's son and a farm labourer turns into a mutilation nightmare and a revenge drama

G

owda, headman of Guddadahalli, a village now in the heart of Bangalore (near Chamarajpet), spotted an orphan standing in a corner at the Devagiri village fair. He took the crying boy, whose name was Dasa, to Guddadahalli, and asked his friend Devaiah to keep him as a labourer. Labourers used to gather at Gowda’s cattleshed after their day’s work, and sleep there. Thanks to his friendly nature, Dasa was liked by everyone, and became Gowda’s favourite, too. Dasa developed a close friend-

VIVEK ARUN

ship with Kariyanna, a fellow labourer, who was about 35 years old. Their intimacy was not without reason. Sleeping next to Dasa, Karianna used to caress him intimately. Dasa was young, and no one suspected he was a homosexual. Kariyanna was lecherous. He used to visit prostitutes in Channapatna, a nearby town, and his debauchery made him suffer from venerable diseases. A native doctor would treat him. Kariyanna was employed as a bonded labourer as his father had borrowed money from the landlord; there was no chance for him to marry as his father could not repay the loan. Kariyanna discovered that Dasa’s organ was always stiff. “Why is it like this?” he asked Dasa. “It has been that way since my childhood. I have noticed it is not so with other boys. I don’t know what the remedy is. And that is the reason I wear baggy shorts,” Dasa replied. “Let us go and consult the

native doctor in Bidarehalli. He may give you some medicine,” Kariyanna suggested. “What do we tell Gowda?” Dasa wondered. “Don’t worry. I will tell him I am taking you to worship the family deity at our native village,” said Kariyanna. After conducting a check up, the native doctor said, “There is no medicine for this disorder. But there is a remedy.” “What is it?” Kariyanna asked eagerly. “Dasa has to perform fellatio on a 10-year-old boy. He must do this at least twice a month for five months,” said the native doctor. The disease is called priapism, and causes a painful erection even when there is no arousal. “Your master’s son is 10. Develop a friendship with him,” Kariyanna told Dasa. Dasa started waking up early in the morning. After completing the morning chores, he would take the

crime folio

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Fabled ranconteur and Bangalore’’s top-notch criminal lawyer brings you moving, sensational and bizarre stories from 40 years of his practice

CH HANUMANTHARAYA

master’s son Sanjeeva to school. Noticing this, Mallajamma, wife of Devaiah, was happy. “See how sincere our Dasa is. He loves Sanjeeva so much,” she used to tell her husband. Dasa used to touch Sanjeeva’s thighs and buttocks while taking him to school. Addicted to the experience, Sanjeeva would refuse to go to school if Dasa was not around to drop him. However, there was a problem. Sanjeeva, who used to enjoy the experience when Dasa caressed his thighs and buttocks, did not allow him to touch his private parts. Dasa told this to Kariyanna. “Tomorrow, they are putting up ‘Subhadra Kalyana’ on the outskirts of the village. It is an all-night play. Take Sanjeeva there and make him watch the play through the night. Offer him some toffee. Take him to


memoir the fields in the morning. He will fall asleep and then you can do whatever you want,” Karianna suggested. The day after the play was a school holiday. Dasa took Sanjeeva to a field. Mallajamma was fond of Sanjeeva as he was the only son, born after two girl children. She and her husband Devaiah had worshipped the family diety Bettada Hanumappa seeking a boy. Sanjeeva was born 16 years after their marriage, and the couple believed he was a divine boon. A possessive Mallajamma would not send Sanjeeva with others, but Dasa was a trusted help. She willingly sent her son with him, and asked Dasa to get some grass for her cattle on the way back. Dasa carried with him a sickle to cut the grass. In the field, Dasa played with Sanjeeva. After a while, a tired Sanjeeva fell asleep in the shade of a tree. Dasa tried to do what Karianna had suggested, but Sanjeeva woke up and refused to cooperate. Dasa tried again and again, but Sanjeeva wouldn’t give in. When Dasa tried to force himself on him, Sanjeeva kicked his face. As he started bleeding, a furious Dasa cut Sanjeeva’s penis using the sickle. Sanjeeva screamed in pain. People came running, and Dasa fled. When she saw her son’s plight, Malljamma fainted. Devaiah was shaking.

talk|23 may 2013|talkmag.in

Many of his workers wanted to avenge year jail term. In jail, Dasa learnt hair-cutting. He Dasa, but Devaiah’s priority was to get good treatment for his son. He took earned money by shaving and cutting the Sanjeeva to the government hospital at hair of fellow inmates. He satiated his homosexual urge in Mandya. The doctors asked him to shift the boy to Victoria Hospital in Bangalore as jail and learned to crack dirty jokes. When he was released, Dasa was 25. they saw his condition was serious. The doctors at Victoria Hospital treat- He started a salon at Mudigere Cross near ed the wound, but they could not re-join Channapatna with the money he had earned inside the jail. The salon soon the penis. When Sanjeeva was brought back to became popular because of his sex jokes, the village, people thronged at Devaiah’s and people liked his barber skills too. By then, Sanjeeva house to see him. They had turned 19. His occuwanted to see how Sanjeeva had pation was cattle grazing. Sanjeeva’s penis had been In the fields, the girls cut. Initially, Mallajamma became a would tease him saying asked him to show it to joke, and felt his genitals were no difpeople, because she wantinsulted ferent from theirs. ed people to understand Sanjeeva had become the magnitude of Dasa’s numb to such humour. crime. One day, one of his buffaloes went But it did not stop at that. People from the neighbouring villages started missing. Sanjeeva set out to look for it and coming to look at him. Even teachers in his reached Mudigere Cross. When he was school used to show the stub to visitors. It passing by, Dasa noticed him. He wanted became a sort of amusement in school, and to have fun. He asked one of his customers Sanjeeva felt insulted. Sensing this, to go and ask Sanjeeva whether he had a Devaiah stopped him from going to school. penis. An amused customer approached He instructed Sanjeeva not to oblige to Sanjeeva and broached the subject of his genitals. Sanjeeva asked him how he knew people’s requests. Meanwhile, the police arrested Dasa about the problem. The man pointed to and the court slapped him with an eight- Dasa’s salon.

29

Sanjeeva’s blood boiled when he saw Dasa, but he ran from the spot. Dasa thought Sanjeeva was frightened to see him. But he was not. Sanjeeva returned the next morning with a big knife. Dasa was at a field answering nature’s call. Sanjeeva stabbed him to death. When people around came running to catch him, Sanjeeva opened his shorts and showed them how he had been wronged by Dasa. The people sympathised with him and allowed him to escape. The police arrested Sanjeeva after a preliminary investigation. His father referred the case to me. I fought and got Sanjeeva acquitted. Strangely, Sanjeeva’s parents didn’t want him out of jail. “Sir, if he comes to the village he has to face insults, which is a bigger punishment. Let him stay there.” Even Sanjeeva felt the same way. I got him a job in Bangalore. As he was handsome, a girl fell in love with him. She wanted to marry him. Her parents approached him with a proposal. The very day after that, he disappeared from the neighbourhood. He had even quit the factory where he was employed. It is some decades since I saw him. Translated by BV Shivashankar


T I M E P A SS

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T I M E P A SS 1st Cross

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Talk’’s weekly crossword for Bangaloreans who know their way about town health insurance for everyone (4,6) 16 The KJP spoilt BJP's prospects in at least ____ - ___ seats in the recent assembly elections (6,4) 17 Lounge Bar on Infantry Road (6) DOWN 1 Two persons hailing from this city have been arrested in connection with the April 17th bomb blasts (10) 3 Our new Chief Minister (12) 4 Kannada remake of Telugu film Darling directed by MD Shridhar (6) 5 From May 1 we have to pay more for ____ (11)

Last week’’s solution Across: 1 Ragoos, 3 Gokarna, 4 Tamil Nadu, 8 Polo club, 10 Virajpet, 12 Anjan, 13 Reddy, 14 Periyapattana, 15 Fourteen, 16 Hebbal, 18 Shikaripur. ACROSS 2 Party which has demanded a vote recount in the T Narsipura constituency (3) 4 Avadhi food is the speciality of this restaurant on Cunningham road (7) 6 In a recent shocking incident two senior citizens found a dead ____ in

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their milk packet (6) Bangalore's famed botanical gardens (7) 9 Mr Kartik of RCB (6) 12 Multiplex on Banerghatta road (9) 13 Falls 65 kms away from Belgaum (5) 14 Heart specialist who feels the government should introduce micro 7

Down: 1 Ravi Kiran, 2 RedBus, 5 Illiterate, 6 Tibetan, 7 Seventeen, 9 Chandrashekar, 11 Mynaa, 17 BMS.

8

Around 15 people were injured when a mini bus crashed into a divider on this road recently (5) 9 A Bangalore-based social worker has filed a lawsuit against this famous cricketer for hurting religious sentiments (1,1,5) 10 Jagadish Shettar feels this was one of the factors which led to BJP's defeat in the recent assembly elections (10) 11 Dynasty which ruled the area around Bangalore in the 11th century (5) 15 Our new Chief Minister's constituency (6)

Prof Good Sense „ My eight-year-old daughter is cribbing and whining. She is angry and complains about everything. Sometimes she screams. She cries often. I haven't seen her happy or pleasant in the recent past. How can I understand her and help her? Harshini, Hubli You need to know from her, when she is relaxed, why she behaves the way she does. Give her love and tenderness. Has she been a difficult child since infancy? Is there a medical problem with her? Are you an over-protective parent who failed to encourage her to be independent? Has there been a major change in the family? Does she get your attention only when she throws tantrums? Has she been abused by someone? Is she behaving well at school and with her peers? Meet her teachers to find out. Ignore her negative behaviour, and reinforce her positive actions. Best of luck. Prof M Sreedhara Murthy teaches psychology at NMKRV First Grade College. He is also a well-known photographer. Mail queries to prof@talkmag.in


talk|23 may 2013|talkmag.in

A device that could make booze from sunshine This is the kind of headline that gives goose bumps to those of us who pray at the Temple of Technology. And it’s true, too; sort of. A group at Panasonic has claimed to have developed a technology that uses sunlight to produce oxygen and organic substances from water and carbon dioxide, just the way plants do. The technology is a bit too complicated for our unscientific minds, but we

gathered that it’s done by rigging up electrodes and putting them out in the sun. In the future, they say,

China, the new champion of human rights The folks that brought you Tiananmen Square are now all set to take human rights to the next level. Yes, the Chinese have taken the first official step toward becoming the world’s new superpower by drawing up a list of human rights abuses in other countries. And here’s the one that’s got tongues wagging: a Chinese report on Human Rights Record of the United States in 2012. Sample these excerpts: “In the US, elections could not fully embody the real

will of its citizens.” “The US has become one of the developed countries with the greatest income gap.” “A huge number of people are homeless in the US.” “The US seriously infringed upon human rights of other nations. In 2012, US military operations in Yemen, Afghanistan and Pakistan caused massive civilian casualties.” No doubt, it’s all true and it’s also rather pleasing to see the Americans getting thrashed with the

advanced versions of the technology will be able to produce stuff like hydrocarbons and even alcohol. Panasonic is now touting it as an ideal solution for both global warming and energy issues. Nice try, fellows. While we are certainly charmed by the idea of a device that can make unlimited booze from pure sunshine, we see this as little more than techno-puffery.

WILLIAM WARREN

same stick they have liberally used on the rest of the world all these years. But we can’t help wondering... competitive hypocrisy, is that what superpowerdom is all about?

The hottest conspiracy theorist ever Over here, we wear the tag “conspiracy theorist” as a badge of honour. Therefore, we were thoroughly delighted to come across Sibel Edmonds. Arguably the hottest thing ever to grace a field overwhelmingly populated either by nutty professor types or unwashed cranks (all male, incidentally), this TurkishAmerican shares a common history with many star conspiracy theorists: she used to be an insider. A former FBI translator with access to highly classified information, she was fired from her job for blowing the whistle on a colleague who had covered up illicit activity and made serious security breaches. She then successfully fought a gag order on her in court, and went on to found a Whistleblowers Coalition. She caught our attention with her theory that the Boston bombings accused, the Tsarnaev brothers, were actually CIA double agents who went rogue. (How she gets to it is complicated, but you can find out by watching her interviews on YouTube ). But for once, we admit, we were forced to ignore the theory in favour of the theorist.

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