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Catch Hip-Hop, Poetry and Fusion at the 10th Annual October Jam in Bengaluru

Fusion band Moon Arra, Dharavi crew Dopeadelicz, transgender poet Disha Shaikh and more perform at media and arts collective Maraa’s art festival

Anurag Tagat Oct 28, 2018

Hip-hop crew Dopeadelicz will perform at Maraa's October Jam in Bengaluru. Photo: Courtesy of Maraa

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Bengaluru recently saw political groups arm-twist Jagriti Theatre into canceling a play called Shiva that focused on identity, gender and sexuality, owing to security concerns. But the voices of dissent, differing opinions and much more have always found a space for the last decade thanks to city-based media and arts collective Maraa.

But Maraa spokesperson Angarika Guha tells us that even they’ve had their fair share of trouble. “Several years ago we were organizing a series of events called Pause: in times of conflict and one of the events was around Kashmir. The event was shut down immediately, and we were hauled off to jail.” From thereon, Maraa has found ways to dodge any run-ins with political groups and police alike. “So its always been tricky terrain, but we are quite committed to finding creative ways to subvert authority and challenge what seems permissible,” Guha says.

Continuing their contribution to free speech and expression, the 10th edition of their annual arts festival October Jam leads up to its final week on October 28th, featuring hip-hop groups, folk artists and poets with a strong message. There’s Dharavi, Mumbai’s multilingual rap crew Dopeadelicz, poetry-fusion group Moon Arra from Bengaluru, Mumbai transgender poet and activist Disha Pinky Shaikh, Dalit djembe collective Indian Folk Band, Chennai rappers Arivu and Ofro, MC Koyla Bear and local group Hip Hop Kannadiguru.

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Guha says, “The intent of the concert is to challenge the atmosphere of censorship in the country, through music, voice and sound. The concert is curated around the theme of fearless expression and fearless listening.”

It’s the first time Maraa are working with rap crews. Guha adds, “In fact, everyone who is attending, we will be meeting for the first time!” She adds about the aim of the concert, “We wanted to curate the concert around the notion of voice — who gets to speak, what gets articulated, what gets silenced in the current socio-political climate.”

October Jam – From The Gut takes place at Maraa, Bengaluru on October 28th, 2018, from 5 pm onwards. Entry: Rs 200. Event details here.

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