Assamese singer Kalpana Patowary, who shifted base from Guwahati to Mumbai, has emerged as a front-running artist in the Bhojpuri music world. Having been bestowed with the title of “Queen of Bhojpuri Music”, Kalpana is now working on her first Hindi music video album – Maa-e-ri, which focus on the pristine beauty of North East India.
The locations for Kalpana’s album are befitting for the album as they take the viewers on a journey through some of the minimally visited locales of the Northeast. The videos have been produced and the production coordinated by Music Box, which has sought hard to present the North east in all its beauty and grandeur. The videos have been shot in locales like Dawki in Meghalaya, Mawlynong village, Cherapunjee, etc. The production team has sought to highlight the significance of the locales through the videos. For instance, Mawlyngnong is regarded to be one of the cleanest villages in India. “The rich sites of this village have been captured in frame, which obviously will whet the senses of an adventurous traveller. The tiny village, otherwise unknown to most people of the world, will now be featured in this video, which will get an edge in the tourism map. The Living Root Bridge, a phenomenon to be seen to be believed is something that tourism buffs will be attracted to after seeing the video, which will be a class apart in its league. A part of the video has also been shot in Cherrapunjee, once the wettest place on earth,” says Kalpana. Mae-e-Ri, apart from portraying the rich tapestry of some of the places of the Northeast has also laid ample emphasis on the costumes, which is an array of attractive colours from the looms of the Northeast. The first costume that Kalpana has worn for her video is an ensemble inspired from one of the tribes of Nagaland. The video captures traditionally garbed Naga tribesmen performing to the beat of Kalpana’s song. “We have also used costumed from Assam, a dress unique to the Darrang District. This costume is mostly worn by the women during the performance of the Deodhani Nritya on the auspicious day of Ma Manasha Puja,” says Kalpana.
The Deodhani dance is performed either solo or in a group of three to four women essentially on the occasion of the worship of Godesses Manasha. As per myth, Behula had to dance before Goddess Manasha in order to get back her husband’s life. The dancers wear Mekhela-Sador, the unique and traditional attire of the women of Assam. This ethnic ensemble is a two piece dress, with the mekhela being the lower part or the skirt from waist down, which is pleated in two to three folds. This is topped up by a blouse. The Sador is a longish piece of cloth, which is again wrapped very gracefully over the blouse and right across the front of the torso to be folded delicately into the mekhela. The motifs woven into the mekhela-sador are usually inspired by objects from nature, like birds, flowers, trees, etc.For Kalpana, this video has been a journey of some of the most coveted moments of her life. Says Kalpana, “I am launching my first International Hindi music album in order to reach out to the maximum number of music lovers around the globe. I am on a journey of evolution through this album. A tribute to Mother Earth, working on this album has been a major experience for me. Let us return to nature because only in nature can the spirit of mankind be found meaningful.”