Organisers devise ‘silent’ garba to skirt noise pollution norms
Mumbai: The recent high court strictures on noise pollution during festivals have put fear in the minds of dandia organisers ahead of Navratra. At least two venues are devising a “silent garba” by providing headphones to all dancers after the 10pm deadline for loudspeakers.
Prominent among these is the Naidu Club dandia at Kora Kendra in Borivli. Organiser Ganesh Naidu said, “We have sourced sophisticated headphones costing Rs 8,000 each that allow three different tracks to play simutaneously. Dancers can choose from Gujarati folk, Hindi film and fusion tracks and their LED device will light up in a particular colour. They can join the group dancing to that beat. The Metro construction work has caused such traffic jams that people who reach late can at least dance till midnight without violating any rules.”
Asimilar effort is unfolding at Rajmahal Banquets in Malad. Owner Monesh Soni said, “We have sought the expertise of the technical expert who first made silent disco popular in the film ‘Ae Dil Hai Mushkil’. We are likely to draw crowds who wish to dance well beyond midnight.”
Yet, Mumbai’s biggest garba organiser Devendra Shah of Sankalp had experimented silent garba with no less than Falguni Pathak in 2010 — and failed. He said, “Dandia is all about a live event, live singing and performances. There is synchronisation between musicians and dancers. After the first two nights, hardly 100 or 200 participants volunteered. It was like watching a dumb parade. In a live music performance, players dance with lots of energy and fast movements. We found out it does not work and we gave up after the initial two-day experiment.”
Soni feels this could be because old mobile phone earphones were used then. “These new headphones do not fall off while dancing,” he said.
Dr Nimesh Mehta, who is a consultant to the Kora Kendra silent garba, agrees that it is indeed funny to watch players dance while spectators hear nothing.
“However, our organisation named Borivli Medical Brotherhood is also hosting a silent garba for 200-300 doctors on September 17,” he said.
Indoor dandia events like the one at the Dome at NSCI, Worli, are also hoping to fill the gap, said owner Mazhar Nadiadwala.
GROOVE TO HEADPHONES