Landour, a 6 hrs drive from Delhi and only 300 km. Landour is a small town contiguous with Mussorie, is about 35 km from the city of Dehradun in the northern state of Uttarakhand, India. The twin towns of Mussoorie and Landour, together, are well-known British Raj-era hill station in northern India. Mussoorie-Landour was widely known as the “Queen of the Hills”.
We reached Landour on 18 April, a day before the Big Gig festival in the late afternoon. It was heavily raining. We were exited for the festival happening the next day. Our board and lodging arrangements were done by the organizers of the Festival at Woodstock school guest house.
There are several such festivals that I regularly attended, such outdoor concerts is a very different as they demand important decisions related to weather, clothing, food/drink and the stamina of standing for hours on end.
Around 100 people gathered for The Big Gig Music festival on Friday 19th April, in the Himalayas.
We woke up early on the Friday morning and had our breakfast in Woodstock. Afterwards we started walking up to the Rokeby highland which was about 20 minutes walk from Woodstock. Reaching the spot, we fixed our cameras at two different angles. Last minute preparations and rehearsals were seen at that time. The Bands in full swing get themselves ready to hit the stage. Performers included: The Lyres and Accidentals from Woodstock, The Bootleg browns, The Okies, Raagleela, Mame Khan Maganiyar and group, Prateek Kuhad and Nikhil Vasudev and Run! Its the Kid.
As the clock stroke noon the beautiful journey of music began…
As the saying goes “first impression is the last impression, ‘The Lyres’ band from Woodstock school did justification to this saying by being the first performer of the event that amazed everyone with their unique piece of music. Interestingly, this band was they were youngest among all the performers. We were mesmerized by the stunning performance of three 12 grader boys namely Rohan Kumar from Canada, Aryan Samuel from Noida and Phuriwat from Thailand. Rohan Kumar and Aryan Samuel were playing the Saxophone and Phurkist was on the Guitar. It was an amazing performance.
Bands like The Bootleg browns, The Okies, Raagleela, Prateek Kuhad and Nikhil Vasudev, and Run! It’s the Kid followed. All were great performances.
As evening fell, so did the temperature, as we were at the top of the Rokbey highlands. A cup of hot coffee and hot dog made a perfect way to beat the chill!
The surprise package of this festival was brought to us by Mame Khan Manganiyar, famous Bollywood and folk singer from Rajasthan. He brought the Rajasthan feel to the Himalaya as he started singing the popular song ‘Bichooda’. Everyone started dancing to the tunes of Rajasthani folk songs as he presented all the hit numbers from Rajasthan. This musical event ended with the Bollywood number Nimbooda by him.
The Big Gig Festival of musical extravaganza ended after much enthusiasm from both bands and attendees. After the show we wrapped up and headed towards the guest house. It was a memorable experience we had with wonderful people and young musicians from different part of India. The folks of the festival impressed us with their friendly gestures throughout the festival. It was ended a day to remember for the wonderful experience we had in the festival.