An All-Female Bhojpuri Bidesiya Presented Instead of an All-Male in the USA 
| Onkareshwar Pandey, Editor in Chief, IOP - 16 Mar 2019

Creating Elasticity between Bhojpuri Culture and Bhojpuri Diaspora Community

By Onkareshwar Pandey, Editor in Chief, Indian Observer Post

New Delhi, March 16, 2019: Bidesiya, an all-male musical Bhojpuri folk style from, Bihar, India was presented as an all-female ensemble in Bay area of California, USA last month. It was presented by a young researcher Satkirti Sinha with the Bhojpuri Diaspora community based there.

Satkirti is not only an international researcher but also a dedicated theatre practitioner, who is living in London and doing his Masters in Drama and Theater from Royal Holloway, University of London. His team included – Swasti Pandey as lead singer and Ruchi Priya as second lead singer, Tarun Kailash as Sutradhar and Anamika Chandra, Seema Vishwakarma, Sushmita Kundu, and Awanti Tiwari were cast in different roles.

I spoke to Satkriti Sinha over the phone and decided to provide moral support in his efforts to promote Bhojpuri Bidesiya style.

At present, Satkirti Sinha is doing his research on Bhikhari Thakur and his theatrical form Bidesiya and trying to reinvent this style on a global level by collaborating with other methods, so that he could create elasticity between Bhojpuri culture and Bhojpuri Diaspora community living in western countries.

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Last month only he Directed and conducted a workshop with Bhojpuri Diaspora community in Bay area California where for the first time he presented Bidesiya as an all-female ensemble.

In the past, he had performed Bidesiya in London where Japanese song and Indonesian puppetry were amalgamated with this Bhojpuri artistic culture whereas, in his second performance in Kolkata, he had collaborated Bidesiya with Theatre of the oppressed and Bengali music. 

As per Satkirti, Bidesiya is an all-male musical folk style from, Bihar, India. Bhikhari Thakur, the creator of this form, is also known Shakspeare of Bhojpuri.

The Bidesiya style started in the year 1917 when Bhikhari Thakur used to talk about migration, infidelity, patriarchal and feudal society through his songs.

While doing his research, Satkirti was surprised to find out that this theatrical style is still one of the popular cultural forms among Bhojpuri Diaspora community in countries like the Caribbean Islands, Mauritius, Netherlands, and Fiji. 

Thus the result of Satkirti research was the tipping point when he thought to globalise this style with the collaboration of Bhojpuri Diaspora community in different parts of the world.

According to Satkirti, he is “not trying to restart the old traditional musical Bhojpuri Bidesiya form but reinvents it with a present view of society on the migration of the Bihari community and Gender discrimination and therefore for the first time he presented” an all-female Bidesiya show instead of an all-male in the USA. 

Before starting his PhD on Bhojpuri artistic culture, Satkirti is planning to perform a few more shows of Bidesiya in Caribbean Islands, where he is trying to collaborate Bhojpuri language and Chutney music (a type of music famous among Bhojpuri Diaspora community in Caribbean Islands) and present the stories of indentured migrants who were forcefully migrated during British Era from Bihar, India.  

(Onkareshwar Pandey is Editor in Chief & CEO, Indian Observer Post; former Senior Group Editor- Rashtriya Sahara (Hindi & Urdu); and also former Editor - News, ANIhttp://bit.ly/2mh7hih).

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