The Pondicherry Heritage Festival is in its third edition. This year again the singular character of this extraordinary town and its environs will be celebrated. Originally the Heritage Festival was conceived to draw attention to Pondicherry’s outstanding architectural legacy and the need for its conservation. Now the scope has expanded to include the towns myriad intangible traditions. Puducherry boasts of a diverse built environment, a peaceful coastal setting with a rich spiritual and intellectual history. Not to forget its fascinating combination of indigenous and international cultural practices.
In a world that values novelty, that embraces rapid and incessant change, it is increasingly challenging to appreciate old things and ways that contribute to the richness of life. The Pondicherry Heritage Festivals’ objective is to bring attention to the places and traditions that are dear to the town’s residents and to help see these passed down to future generations. By creating a focus on, and listing priorities of things that make Puducherry a unique town the festival hopes to create an interest that will help preservation of culture, traditions and buildings.
This year special focus will be given to Bahour, a locality that dates back to the Chola period and one of the town’s most ancient areas.
A dance drama, portraying the legend of the two sisters who constructed the Bahour canal and created the lake will be the opening of the festival. The concluding morning of the festival will also take place in Bahour.
Crafts Bazaar will hold a “Made in Pondy” event showcasing products from the Pondicherry – Auroville region. Traditional arts and crafts demos will also be held.
The festival will also have the usual discussion forums addressing the ways a city’s heritage forms the base of its development and informs its future.
A host of events, dance and music performances, heritage walks, open-house events at special locations, interactive installations and a photography contest will highlight the Heritage Festival.