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Photos: Cherry Blossom Festival 2021, Shillong

To coincide with the picturesque time of the year, the three-day festival hosted literature, food, DJs, pop artists and others

Rolling Stone India Dec 12, 2021

The crowd at Cherry Blossom Festival 2021 in Shillong. Photo: Courtesy of Rockski Group

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Following a forced break in 2020 owing to the coronavirus pandemic, art and culture event Cherry Blossom Festival returned last month, bringing together international and Indian artists for music, literature, fashion, food and much more.

Originally launched in 2016 as a means to boost tourism around the time cherry blossom trees bloom in the region, the three-day event took place from November 25th to 27th this time around, setting up at Ward’s Lake for daytime activities as well as Polo Grounds. The lineup included Dubai-based funk act CNR Mafia, K-pop group PIXY, Thailand electronic-pop artist Pyra, Portuguese DJ-producer Mari Ferrari and others. Local artists getting a big stage included singer Jessie Lyngdoh, R&B/pop crooner Shane, indie rock band Rum and Monkeys, pop-rock group The Rechords, rappers including Banjop and Banrap Lyngdoh, plus DJs such as Zethan, Knack, Wanshan and more.

Although music festivals have resumed all over the country, Cherry Blossom — which is supported by the Meghalaya government — seemed to have been among the first to bring in international groups (beyond DJs) for the gig-hungry crowd. It also brought in artists like Jessie Lyngdoh, who has thrived in the digital space and brought in a crowd. She said in an Instagram post about her performance, “I’ll tell you a secret. I’ve had stage fright for nine years now. I’ve been battling with my fears but I felt at home when I saw you at Cherry Blossom. When I was interacting with you guys I felt like a dream come true.”

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Check out select photos from the festival below.

Photos: Courtesy of Rockski EMG.

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