Musical Band ‘Urali’ to perform at inaugural
Kochi, September 27: As the curtains rise on Wednesday for the tenth edition of SiGNS short film and documentary festival, all eyes are on three acclaimed documentaries that will be screened under the competition section on the opening day.
Winner of the Rajat Kamal National Award for Best Environment film in 2014, ‘I cannot give you my forest’, directed by Nandan Saxena and Kavita Bahl, is a hard-hitting documentary that follows the lives of the Kondh tribals and shows how the tribal community’s traditional wisdom is harmonious with nature.
‘The man who dwarfed the mountains’, by Ruchi Shrivastava and Sumit Ghanna, which won this year’s National award in the Best Environment film, captures the resolute spirit of environmentalist Chandi Prasad Bhatt, a pioneer of the Chipko Movement.
Raja Shabir Khan’s ‘Vanishing Glaciers’ explores the depletion of glaciers in the northern parts of India due to human exploits.
Four short films and a documentary will be also screened on the first day, which will be followed by the inaugural function. Film director and Chairman of the Kerala State Chalachitra Academy Shri Kamal will officially inaugurate this year’s festival at the Ernakulam Town Hall at 5 pm. Festival Jury head Rakesh Sharma will release the festival book during the function.
A concert by Urali band will follow the inaugural ceremony. The band, led by vocalist Martin Urali, is known for their sharp lyrics with critical social commentary and firebrand performances.
“Festivals like SiGNS is important in our times when the issue of plurality, right to dissent and freedom of expression are facing severe challenges,” said Dr C S Venkiteswaran, Artistic Director of SiGNS 2016 and well-known film critic. “The strength of SiGNS is that it believes in promoting and showcasing video works that raise disturbing questions about our life and times, and also works that extend the horizons of aesthetic experience and expression.”
Organised by the Federation of Film Society of India (FFSI) Kerala, in association with the Kochi Biennale Foundation, SiGNS 2016 will screen almost 200 short films and documentaries in two venues at the Ernakulam Town Hall, with open forums and seminars for participating filmmakers. All screenings are free to the public.
A jury led by prominent filmmaker Rakesh Sharma will choose the best short film and documentary for the John Abraham National awards. Rakesh Sharma will also deliver this year’s John Abraham Memorial Speech on ‘Times of intolerance, censored minds’ on October 1. The festival will run till October 2.
Shri M Gopinathan, Secretary of Metro Flm Society, Shri VK Joseph, Secretary of FFSI, Keralam, Shri Chelavur Venu, Vice President of FFSI, will also attend the inaugural function. Shri Sebastian Paul, ExMP, Shri Satyapal, Chairman, Kerala Lalitakala Academy, Shri Riyaz Khomu founder of the Kochi Muziris Biennale, Shri Bonny Thomas, trustee of KMB, actress Sajitha Madathil and director Aashiq Abu will be felicitated during the opening ceremony.
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