Indian Women on Record : The Film

A Documentary Film celebrating the music of Indian women in early 20th century.

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A contemporary female musician embarks on a journey to trace the beginnings of the first expeditions of European sound engineers to India, the transitions brought about by the gramophone in the consumption of music and the invaluable contributions of women singers who laid the foundations of what later evolved into the Indian Music industry.

Wading through the visual sceneries of Calcutta, Benares and Lucknow, the three important centres of North India Classical music, Indian Women on Record traverses between nostalgia and contemporary music scenario bringing alive the forgotten histories of women singers through interviews with artists, connoisseurs, film industry veterans and experts in the field of music.

The film evolves through archival footage, old musical pieces and performances that recreate and remember the lives and times of brilliantly talented singers who liberated music from the confines of darbars to be enjoyed and cherished by the common place.

Delving  into the musical history of a bygone era, the film explores the myriad of  reasons that made these women successful as musicians and later as producers, composers and actors. The film documents their struggle to ward of the social stigmas of their professional lives, their unrelenting participation in national struggle despite innumerable odds and most of all their passion for music and what it meant to be a singer during the pre-independence years and in the decline that followed.  

"Indian Women on Record" is a tribute to the ignored protagonists of a cultural revolution that began with the miraculous popularisation of 78 rpm records in the 1900's and merged later with the evolution of radio and cinema in India.

Film Duration : 48 minutes 21 seconds

Watch the trailer, here.

To get more information on the project, for collaboration or screening purposes, kindly write to us at cmacindia@gmail.com