| 19 May 2024
Magnetic Words returns with a stellar line-up of speakers
Magnetic Words
Magnetic Words

MUMBAI: Globally recognised as one of the most beautiful festivals in the world for its blend of heritage arts mixed with contemporary culture, Magnetic Fields has quickly come to be associated with pushing future-facing sounds and alternative culture.

In 2016, Magnetic Fields became the first music festival in the country to bring tellers of tales from India and around the world and introduced Magnetic Words, an entirely new, intimate and inspiring space where some of India’s finest writers, journalists, performers, artists and activists shared and experienced the most fundamental unit of human culture – a story.

In 2017, the second edition of Magnetic Words will feature acclaimed filmmakers like Mahesh Mathai, Ruchi Narain, respected journalists Sunetra Choudhary and Shiv Aroor, celebrated photographer Samar Jodha among others.

For its fifth edition, the arts and music festival will focus on wellness through its new space, Magnetic Sanctuary and also present collaboration between the women of Alsisar and Photographing the Female, an international project.

Magnetic Words

Storytelling is an intrinsic part of music festivals around the world, and Magnetic Fields was the first music festival in India to bring tellers of tales from India and around the world. Magnetic Words programming, like last year, will run on Saturday and Sunday afternoons in the palace dungeon.

Presenting their own spin on the #MagFields 2017 theme – laws of attraction – will be storytellers from fields as diverse as journalism, film, advertising, radio and medicine.

Filmmaker Mahesh Mathai, who has to his credit titles like Bhopal Express and innumerable ad films, will speak on how the law of attraction has often led him to the road less travelled, often against sage advice and brought him closer ideas and people that resonated with him.

Writer and director Ruchi Narain, best known for writing Hazaron Khwahishein Aisi and directing KAL, will explore the magnetic pull of choices that brought a girl who didn’t know a word of Hindi to the Hindi film industry.

Celebrated photographer Samar Jodha will present his case on why art needs to go beyond beauty and focus on the big picture of social change instead.

TV journalist and author Shiv Tharoor will recount A Dead Soldier’s Dance, a story about the relationship between a young woman and her husband, Lance Naik Mohan Nath Goswami – a Special Forces officer who killed 11 terrorists in his last ten days alive.

Founder of the acerbic-toned Newslaundry, media and news critique website, Abhinandan Sekhri questions what attracts the collective conscience, lofty ideals or base instincts and examines the premise of democracy in the digital age.

Known face on Indian television, and journalist, Sunetra Choudhary will recall tales of attracting sources for stories and how we piece together the stories we tell.

Filmmakers and close friends Taher Mithaiwala and Ashutosh Shah will share how their attraction to cinema brought them together.

Popular radio jockey and creator of Mufflerman, Abhilash Thapliyal will explore how challenging the boundaries of what you know life to be is a road worth travelling.

Dastangoi – a 16th century Urdu storytelling art form that has been revived painstakingly by a few dedicated practitioners – will be performed by Sunil Mehra, a Delhi-based writer, filmmaker and actor.

Hypnotherapist Radhika Kawlra will speak about how acknowledging the glorious hidden essence of your being can affect the universal consciousness.

Entrepreneur and wordsmith Chanchal Sanyal will talk about when attraction turns into repulsion and vice versa.

The man behind the FM movement in India, Sharat Bhattatiripad will share how his love for radio helped him realise how powerful dreams can be.

Part of one of India’s biggest bands, Parkrama for 18 years, Dileep Ramchandran will share and weigh the sordid symbiotic relationship attraction has with our own desires.

Magnetic Sanctuary

Imagined as a tranquil retreat within the festival where you can revive and revitalise your body and mind, Magnetic Sanctuary will offer a variety of wellness workshops and interactive content. Magnetic Sanctuary will be a calming and welcoming alcohol free zone within the festival where guests can drop in at any point and participate in the activities that are contemporary takes on ancient practises that can be transferred into your daily life.

On Saturday and Sunday, Magnetic Fields attendees can enjoy yoga classes with Delhi-based yogi and psychologist Priyanjali, massage workshops with body reader Gwen, aromatherapy and essential oils workshop with Meraki and progressive muscle relaxation workshops with Prachi Gangwani, who has also been a yoga instructor at Magnetic Fields earlier. Our mental welfare partners Tatva will also host an open group in the Sanctuary, a dedicated and relational space for guests to share the diverse experiences of being at a festival.

You could also learn the fun, meditative and creative practise of mandala making with Krishna Khunti. The word ‘mandala’ means ‘circle’ in Sanskrit and represents wholeness. The process of creating this sacred geometry allows access to the deeper levels of the unconscious mind and promotes release, harmony

and unity.

Returning for round two will be Hang Therapy with Prasheen Lodhia. In this unique immersion experience, sound is used as a tool to access deeper states of relaxation and consciousness.

If you like tea then you will love meeting the tea whisperer, Anamika Singh who runs Anandini Himalaya Tea. In this workshop, second generation tea sommelier Anamika Singh will teach you everything you need to know about making perfect tea, the art of steeping tea for health and wellness and of course make you taste lots of tea!

Photographing the Female

Photographing the Female is a global platform that uses the transformational power of visual storytelling to explore what it means to be female around the world today. Through exhibitions, creative partnerships, workshops, and an online platform, Photographing the Female creates spaces for important stories to come alive to help the world understand how diverse, complex and extraordinary the female experience is.

Photographing the Female at #MagFields2017 will be an integrated workshop – held before the festival – and an exhibition at the festival. The collective will work with the girls and women of Alsisar giving them an opportunity to engage with the arts and tell stories of their own. They will additionally be given disposable cameras with which they can explore their surrounds and the photographic medium.

As a final exhibition, this collaborative effort will go on show at Magnetic Fields and give festival goers a unique chance to gain a deeper understanding of and engage with the surrounding cultural context of the festival. 

Photographing the Female was founded in 2016 by Danish photographer, writer, and curator Sarah Høilund whose work mainly focuses on women, art, and global citizenship.