The enduring opera Indra Sabha narrates love between a mortal and otherworldly fairy. Written in 1852 by Agha Hasan Amanat, the fantasy is in essence a love story for the ages: love found, forbidden, and requited.
The Peacock Country’s court is filled with festive silhouettes, embroidered with the tehzeeb of gold and silver Ganga Jamuna, aari, zardozi and gota. Dancers spin in bibbed kalidaars, shararas and gararas with sheer organza trousers beneath. Engineered kurtas and lehengas are woven in rich brocades, while the classic jewelled colours of mixed silver and gold, forest green and saturated reds and indigo rival that of any dancing peacock.
Bold motifs draw from Mughal and Rajputana architecture and painting. The resulting dance drama which unfolds takes liberties, allowing the magic of storytelling to evolve on its own.
Photography & Cinematography: Ashish Shah