The land of culture and heritage, Rajasthan shows rainbow of colours in its fairs and festivals. Rajasthan International Folk Festival (RIFF) at Jodhpur is one such festival that is dedicated to the folk people of Rajasthan. RIFF is a must visit festival when one visits Marwar. People of Rajasthan are dedicated to culture and heritage since many decades. Rulers of Rajasthan were patrons of art and talent. Kings of Rajasthan opened several schools for sharing the knowledge of several arts to the people of Rajasthan. When talking about art people often consider art as something related to drawing, sculpting and designing. Here art is expressed as an extraordinary talent of an individual, may it be folk singing or dancing or something else.
RIFF is held at Rajasthan mostly during the month of October. The carnival has several events related to folk talents. The event is held for four days in which various activities are organized which are praised by visitors. As a tourist if one is visiting Rajasthan during the event days’ one must definitely visit Jodhpur RIFF. The festival does not have any entry fee to visit the events, and entry is open to all. Foreigners also visit this event to experience the soulful Indian folk music. The events which are held at Rajasthan International Folk Festival are listed here namely, Children’s folk morning, opening night- variety City concert, Fort festivals, Meghwal of Marwar, Main stage performances, and many such other events.
The acts of Children:
Children’s folk morning is chargeable for children groups from several schools. It is organized at Veer Durgadas Memorial Park of the city. In this event, there are dances like Terah Taali and Gair which are performed by expert dancers. This event also includes the Kachi Ghodi and Chhatar Kotla in which males dance to the beats of drum wearing colorful costumes. A bahurupiya- con man or disguise specialist also acts and makes children laugh. A Kawa Circus is also organized in which Rajasthani circus artists perform nail-biting acts.
You will soak in the rythm such deep that everything seems superficial in the opening night concert. It is one and a half hour folk dance and musical presentation by renowned performers. This includes the Algoza party with male dancers, music and dance by Kalbeliya, the Manganiyar sings popular Rajasthani songs and a dhol drummer with fire dancer. This event has free entry and is organized at several different places of Jodhpur in the different event year.
Three days are allotted especially to the Fort festivities. This event is organized throughout the Mehrangarh Fort. The entry is limited to the ticket holders or the people who have RIFF all day pass. This event is about various types of dances performed by several communities of Rajasthan namely Gair, Kalbeliya and the Jogis of Marwar. The Chang dance is also performed in this event.
There are a lot of other acts performed by the artists from all over the state, and they are encouraged to perform by the tourism department of the state as well. There are a number of tourists, and travelers coming during this festival to witness the best of the performance by the professionals as well as folk dancers. There are also many acts and dances that are almost to vanish but still kept alive just because of such artists who perform them since ages and generations. Many of the artists who perform here have won different cultural awards on different platforms and some of them also have performed in Hindi as well as English.