Bhubaneswar: Odisha’s twin annual events-the Konark Festival and the International Sand Art Festival will kick off at Konark from Saturday.
The 30th edition of the Konark Festival, organised by Odisha Tourism, will be held at the Open Air Auditorium, with the magnificent Konark Sun Temple in the backdrop, from December 1-5, between 6.00 pm and 8.30 pm.
Eminent artistes from across India will perform at the five-day festival.
As many as 10 acclaimed artistes will perform on Indian classical dance forms such as Odissi, Bharatnatyam, Kathak, Kuchipudi, and Sattriya.
While Bhubaneswar-based Durga Charan Ranbir & Group will present Odissi, Chennai’s Rama Vaidyanathan & Group will perform Bharatnatyam on an inaugural evening.
Similarly, Yasmin Singh & Group from Chattisgarh will present Kathak, Shreelakshmy Govardhan from Kerala will present Kuchipudi and Anwesa Mohanta & Group from Guwahati will present Sattriya.
Odissi by Sharmila Biswas & Group from Kolkata, students of Guru Kelucharan Mohapatra Odissi Research Centre from Bhubaneswar, Ileana Citaristi & Group from Bhubaneswar and Ranjana Gauhar and Group from New Delhi will also be a part of the festival.
Besides, a special tribute through Kathak will be paid by Kumudini Lakhia & Group from Ahmedabad on the concluding evening of the festival.
Coinciding with the Konark Festival, the 8th edition of the International Sand Art Festival, with renowned sand artist Sudarshan Pattnaik as its brand ambassador and chief curator, will be held on the Chandrabhaga Beach, 3 km away from the Sun Temple.
The event will span the entire day from 10:00 am to 10:00 pm.
The global competition will follow the established pattern of day-wise themes based on which participating artists will create their works.
Carrying on from the excitement of Men’s Hockey World Cup 2018, this year’s themes include Sports apart from Heritage, Environment, Women Empowerment, and Cultural Fairs and Festivals.
Another highlight of the festival is the ‘Crafts Mela’ scheduled to be held near to the Chandrabhaga. At the Mela, beautiful sculptures and souvenirs made by the expert craftsmen of the region will be displayed and sold.
Notably, the event of 2017 witnessed 59 artists from across India and an artist each from Mexico, Russia, Germany, Spain, Canada, Ghana, Sri Lanka & Singapore displaying their sand art across five days.