What do Choppards and Tamil Nadu have in common?!
Choppards Mission is perhaps better known for its strawberry teas, howling gales and sweeping, horizontal rain. So, it was almost magical that last Saturday, 14th October – balmy by Yorkshire standards – was perfect to greet musician Vijay Venkat, born in steamy Madras.
Vijay treated a candle-lit audience to haunting melodies on the North Indian and smaller South Indian bamboo flutes, including ragas, songs of the swan and the parrot and a hypnotic folk melody evoking the sounds of Indian village fishermen. It is hard to believe that such wonderful music comes from a length of bamboo!
Fair Trader volunteers cooked up a vegetarian feast of Indian food and drink and showed photos from Rajasthan.
The embroiderers of Dhonk – a women’s co-operative in Ranthambore – have another strand in common with Holmfirth. Situated alongside the tiger reserve of the Ranthambore National Park, some workers are wives of former poachers. Fabrics, many featuring the tiger, are hand block-printed and sewn into wonderful textiles.
Holmfirth has its own tiger connection in Fenella, brought back from South Africa by the Overend family.
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