Songi- A Polymorphic

Songi Bhajan is one of its kind, traditional Folk Musical performing Art. Participants play folk music, sing, dance, and enact, along with their lighting and sound arrangements. Female characters are enacted by male performers only.
It's a three-hour collective performance, a mix of various traditional folk song forms like Bharud, Owi, Vasudev, Gondhal, Gavlan, etc. The artist uses to perform on such songs and drama. This Songi Bhajan was promoted by the King Rajashree Shahu to create awareness about social justice as well as the Indian Independence movement. Songi Bhajan is not only entertainment but it ironically created awareness about social issues. 
This art form is limited to Kolhapur district and its surrounding region only. There are approximately forty to fifty Songi Bhajan Mandals (clubs). Fast urbanization, changed dimensions of infotainment and people lost interest in such traditional art forms. Modern entertainment means such as movies, cinema, television, radio have changed the scenario and made traditional art forms rare to find. The Mandals or Songi bhajan artists are finding it difficult to sustain and make a livelihood out of it. This documentation will help to document this dying art form. Nowadays it’s rarely seen in rural parts of Kolhapur district in the season of festivals only. The shivaji Mandal group is organizing completion for such Songi groups every year since last thirty-five years with cash prize to help them. 
 A group of twenty-five to thirty people use to perform and they receive approximately a few thousand for a three-hour show. Each artist receives a few hundred which makes him unable to feed his family.  The artists are suffering a lot and trying to earn bread butter with some other instruments. Songi Bhajan is just a hobby, love, and affection towards the art form. As younger generations are settling with some other affairs, the art form is getting restricted. There should be efforts to keep this tradition alive. Unfortunately, there are no government efforts to keep this traditional cultural art practice alive. The rural yatra and jatras are the only source of income which are vandalising due to urbanization. The documentation of such Songi Bhajan will try to keep alive the legacy. A threat is in mind if this traditional performing art will vanish in coming days. We all need to keep alive our dying art forms. Government has launched pension scheme for age old artists but they are far away from it. The modern entertainment industry has changed entire scenario side lining the theatre and its siblings. This Songi Bhajan is also struggling to survive.
The dedication of artists towards art and efforts to continue the age-old legacy inspired me to do this photo series.