Maitri Grants recipients will forge new cultural connections

CAIR’s inaugural Maitri Cultural Partnerships have been announced today: six projects will receive funding

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Six projects have received funding under the Maitri Cultural Partnerships grant administered by the Centre for Australia-India Relations CAIR.

These include endeavours in music, arts, textiles, dance, circus and physical theatre, and sound and media.

Making the announcement, Foreign Minister Penny Wong said, “The Maitri Cultural Partnerships grant will deepen our creative sector engagement from major cultural institutions to smaller, community partnerships.”

Each of the partnerships picked for the inaugural grants will support new and exciting collaboration with India and enhance the connections between our creative sectors and India’s thriving cultural industries.

The selected projects include:

  • Mona Foma, the Tasmanian festival of music and arts, will lead a two-year Australia-India music collaboration with artistic exchanges and music residencies, culminating in a major concert in 2025.

    Mona Foma (Source: Facebook)
  • Bábbarra Women’s Centre in Maningrida Northern Territory will work with Tharangini Studios in Bengaluru to engage emerging women artists in textiles development.
  • Raghav Handa will lead a joint effort between FORM Dance Projects and Attakkalari Centre for Movement Arts to be performed at the 2024 India Biennale in Bengaluru.
  • Western Australia’s Undercurrent Theatre Company will collaborate with the Kerala-based Void Ensemble on a new production to be performed in Perth and Trivandrum.
  • Benjamin Knapton, a leading Australian circus and physical theatre director, will work with performers of traditional Indian physical theatre on a production which will premiere at the Royal Opera House in Mumbai.

    State of the art performance theatre (Source: royaloperahouse.in)
  • Melbourne’s Liquid Architecture and Sarai-CSDS in New Delhi will co-host a symposium, workshop, and exhibition on creative practices that utilise new technologies in sound and media.

Detailing the project at Mona Foma, Brian Ritchie, Artistic Director said, “Indian music is a nearly endless repository of tradition and creation. We are particularly excited about creating interchange between musicians from India, the Indian diaspora here and the broader Tasmanian and Australian musical community.”

“We are the Museum of Old and New Art. Bringing old and new together is embodied in Indian music through the use of improvisation, which constantly renews ancient motifs, bringing them to life in the present. Mona Foma will explore the fecundity of Indian musical thought throughout the festival in a multitude of ways, venues and spaces.”

Tim Thomas, CEO, Centre for Australia-India Relations said, “The Centre is pleased to support these projects to bring fresh and innovative perspectives to the Australia-India relationship and to foster creativity in our own multicultural ecosystem.”

Further details on the successful grant projects can be found at australiaindiacentre.org.au.

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