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IBTIDA- Ek Mehfil A Cultural Reinvention of India's Charm, Mehfils and Baithaks

Arushi Sakhuja

India, a land of rich culture and heritage, has in the recent past lost a lot of the art that the nation once took pride in. Aping the West and moving towards a globalised and liberal culture, the unfortunate truth was that many of the crafts of India were lost. While machine embroidery replaced artisanal craft, pop culture, social media and memes replaced a plethora of visual arts that India thrived on. Thus creating a large gap in the cultural market of India.

As an attempt to bring back one of India's pride, Mehfils and Baithaks, visionary minds and architects of a cultural movement Tanvi Singh Bhatia and Anubhav Jain introduced IBTIDA- Ek Mehfil in 2019 – a thoughtful response to a noticeable gap in the cultural landscape. They define IBTIDA as "a curated kaleidoscopic view of music, poetry, food and art to revive the gilded era of old Hindustan. It is a confluence of thoughts, stories, and melodies reciting the tales of India through an old-world charm, bringing together artists and like-minded souls, creating an atmosphere reminiscent of the traditional Mehfil – a heartfelt gathering." While the Gilded Age of  Hindustan has passed us by, Tanvi and Anubhav are dedicated to its revival, and IBTIDA is an empathetic response to a noticeable gap in the cultural landscape. Recognizing the disconnection between the audience and artists, the initiative aims to fill a void where intimate conversations are scarce and the younger audience is devoid of this kind of experience. An event and community that stands as a beacon for cultural revival, the duo aimed to redefine the way everyone experiences Indian traditions. Bringing together a plethora of crafts under one roof, IBTIDA is a purposeful immersive experience that blends art, textiles, lost recipes, spirits, and aesthetics each narrating stories of old-world charm and culture that celebrate Make In India initiatives.

Tanvi, the orchestrator of IBTIDA-Ek Mehfil, believes not just in shaping events, but rather creating moments that are rich in hope and cultural revival. Tanvi shares, We endeavour to revive age-old  traditions of craft, techniques in the modern world; to create a culture that  promotes art with an amalgamation of Make in India initiatives that celebrate our  stories & giving the artist a celebratory platform to interact with the audience in an  intimate setting.” The duo together have an aim to keep the flame of tradition alive in the hearts of Indian and global audiences alike. Not only do they want to reintroduce the crafts within the borders of New India but reach far and wide across the globe. 

Driven by a purpose to change the perception of ‘events’ to ‘experiences’ in the city  and as part of our initiative to bridge the gap between celebration and preservation, IBTIDA – Ek Mehfil curates annual mehfils and baithaks. The last two iterations of  the annual mehfils were held in 2022 and 2023, named Jhoom – flagship winter mehfil and Gul- Phoolon ki Holi aka ‘A Holi with Flowers’. After a successful event in Mumbai last year, this year IBTIDA - Ek Mehfil has introduced Jhoom which will be taking place in Delhi. With a focus on the emotions of love, longing, and Sufism, this mehfil promises an experience where the past and present collide, sharing forgotten melodies and old-world charm. Renowned playback singer Rekha Bhardwaj will be gracing the occasion, adding her soul-stirring voice to the enchanting ambience curated by Ibtida-Ek Mehfil.

A truly meaningful step to revive the culture of India while immersing yourself in an experience of the bygone era, it's time to unwind as you listen to soothing sufi tunes at Jhoom on January,13, 2024.


When: January, 13

Where: Amaara Farms, Chattarpur

Time: 6:00 pm onwards

Get your tickets here



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