Here’s what to look forward to at the Kala Ghoda Art Festival that starts this weekend

Mumbai’s favourite festival is back!

Harper's Bazaar India

This weekend (and the whole of next week) all roads will lead to the Kala Gala Art Festival, the melting pot of all things culture, heritage and art. The city’s favourite art fest that is set to return after a two-year gap, has something from everybody—think dance performances, stand-up comedy, art displays, workshops, and a lot more. 

We’ve picked out some of the most fun, unmissable events for you from the nine-day schedule. 

Children’s Workshops

Feb 4

Puppets and Stories by Talking Turtles Storytellers

Venue and time: CSMVS-Children’s Museum, 10:30 am to 12:00 pm

Storytelling with puppets is an extraordinary experience. It can spark the imagination of children and bring out unexplored emotions and ideas in them! Let children Discover the art of creative storytelling at this morning event on the first day. (Age: 5+ years)

Zara Zoom Le by Shruti Narayan

Venue and time: CSMVS – Children’s Museum, 02:30 pm to 04:00 pm

Get creative and learn how to show swift motion 2D art using crayons and sketch pens in the Zara Zoom Le session conducted by Shruti Narayan. (Age: 7 to 15 years)

Race to Mangalyaan Robotics Workshop by CodeW/Floppy

Venue and time: CSMVS – Children’s Museum, 04:30 pm to 06:00 pm 

Build a rover and race it to Mars, while collecting surprises on the way! (Age: 6 to 12 years)

Feb 5

Back to the Future with Chaahat Advani

Venue and time: CSMVS – Children’s Museum, 10:30 am to 12:00 pm

If you are feeling adventurous, get ready to go ‘Back to the Future’ to innovate and transform recycled materials into something futuristic, unusual, and unique. Let your imagination run wild! (Age: 8+ years)

Wacky, Wild & Wonderful — Kitchen experiments for children with The Chai and Why? team from TIFR 

Venue and time: CSMVS – Children’s Museum, 4:30 pm to 6:00 pm

We think the home kitchen is a hub of fun experiments. From swirling colourful patterns in milk to creating the surprisingly sticky “oobleck” that Dr Seuss would have loved to see, we’re going to explore experiments that might make a mess but won’t get you in trouble with ma! Do you know how to drop a raw egg without breaking it? Find out at this workshop. (Age: 6 to 8 years)

Feb 10

Zip Zap Calligraphy with Achyut Palav

Venue and time: CSMVS – Children’s Museum, 4:30 pm to 06:00 pm

Express yourself with the art of calligraphy using stylised letters and creative drawings, to create a massive collage with artist Achyut Palav.( Ages: 8+ years)

Feb 11

Delicious, Not Kidding by Sthubanta Mukherjee 

Venue and time: CSMVS – Children’s Museum, 2:30 pm to 4:00 pm

Treat your culinary senses to some easy, healthy and delicious recipes that can be made in a jiffy. (Ages: 6 to 14 years)

Feb 12

Coffee Painting with Blue Tokai coffee roasters

Venue and time: CSMVS – Children’s Museum 12:30 pm to 02:00 pm

Bring your imagination to life with coffee painting led by Dhiraj Pednekar from UnoLuca Academy. Join this engaging session as you soak in the art and culture of the city of Mumbai. (Age: 6 to 14 years)

Children’s Literature

Feb 4

Behind the scenes of children’s comic book cover by Somnath Pal

Venue and time: Kitab Khana, 6:00 pm to 7:00 pm

Learn what goes into the Making of comic book covers based on the section theme ‘Page-turners’. (Age: 12 to 14 years)

Feb 8

Art of Editing books by Ahalya Naidu

Venue and time: Kitab Khana, 4:30 pm to 5:30 pm

This one’s for all the budding literatis—an introduction to the importance of an editor’s role in the process of book publishing. (Age: 10 to 14 years)

Feb 9

The A to Z of Indian Cities by Rati Malaiya

Venue and time: Kitab Khana, 4:00 pm to 4:45 pm

This interactive and engaging session (with some play) will help children appreciate the rich diversity of our country—the geographic, cultural, gastronomic and linguistic highlights. (Age: 5-12 years)

Feb 12

Be careful Bappa! by Vinitha 

Venue and time: Kitab Khana, 1:00 pm to 2:00 pm

Join author Vinitha as she takes you on a journey with Raju as he walks with his Ganpati through Mumbai. Learn about Mumbai and its mill history, the chronicles of the chawl and the tradition of Ganpati idol making as well. 

The session ends with a Ganpati collage-making session. (Age: 8 to 12 years)


Feb 4

The Human Factor by Rudradeep Bhattacharjee (Music) Documentary 

Venue and time: Rangaswar Audi, 2:00 pm to 3:30 pm 

The Human Factor tells the fascinating story of the Lords, a Parsi family of pioneering musicians who collectively worked for over 60 years in Bombay’s film orchestras. But the story of the Lords is not theirs alone. It is also a crucial but obscure chapter in the history of Indian cinema.

Feb 6

Best of KASHISH - Indian Shorts Package (Fiction)

Presented by: KASHISH Mumbai International Queer Film Festival

Venue and time: Rangaswar Audi, 2 pm to 4 pm 

The six films—Kinaara by Anureet Watta, Partner by Trupil Sharad Patil, Gair (Pariah) by Nishant Roy Bombarde, The Caress by Bhargav Lahkar, Her Canvas by Sagar Devram Minde and Muhafiz by Pradipta Ray) in this programme highlight candid stories of the LGBTQ+ community in India through an intersectional lens of sexuality, faith, and caste. 

Feb 7

Nimtoh (The Invitation) by Saurav Rai Feature Film (Family)

Venue and time: Rangaswar Audi, 4:30 pm to 6:15 pm 

In a remote mountain village of Darjeeling, ten-year-old Tashi lives with his grandmother and is waiting to be invited to a wedding at their patron’s house. The film has won Grand Jury Prize for Screenplay at Jio MAMI Mumbai International Film Festival, International Film Festival Rotterdam (IFFR), New York Indian Film Festival (NYIFF).


Feb 4

‘Utkarsh’ by Ananya Parida and Rudraprasad Swain (Odissi)

Venue and time: Cross Maidan, 8:05 pm to 8:50 pm

This performance by artistes from Bhubaneshwar showcases the growth of mankind, and the growth of time and life with nuances of Odissi.

‘Shrinkhala’ by Pooja Pant Dance Company (Kathak)

Venue and time: Cross Maidan, 9:00 pm to 9:45 pm

An ensemble performance by this Mumbai-based dance company, ‘Shrinkhala’, portrays the contributions made by generations of Kathak dancers.

Feb 7

Kathak workshop by Pt. Ram Mohan Maharaj

Venue and time: BNHS, 3:00 pm to 5:00 pm

Born in the prestigious family of Kalka Bindadin Gharana of Kathak, Pt. Ram Mohan Maharaj is the son of late legendry Padmashree Pt. Sambhu Maharaj. In this workshop, senior students shall be taught the finer nuances of Kathak such as expressions, tukde, tihaai, padant, thumri, and tarana. 

Freshers at the workshop will learn footwork and chakkars. 

Feb 9

60 Inches of Beauty by Yuteka Trripati Dance (Contemporary)

Venue and time: Cross Maidan, 8:20 pm to 8:50 pm
Contemporary dance artistes from Pune portray how we let our beauty be measured with a number on the weighing scale, or a colour on the skin shade card, putting us all in a loop of insecurities

Feb 10

‘Why Roses Are Red’ by Sandip Soparrkar and students (Dance Drama)

Venue and time: Cross Maidan, 7:30 pm to 8:30 pm

Directed by Subhash Dhang, the dance-drama, inspired by Greek mythology combines Rumba, Samba, Salsa, Cha Cha Cha, Waltz, Paso Doble, Flamenco, Tango, Tap, Freestyle and Contemporary dance styles, with the message ‘All you need is love to fight against evil’

Feb 11

‘Angam - The battle’ by Dancity India (Kalaripayattu & Contemporary)

Venue and time: Cross Maidan, 6:40 pm to 7:05 pm

Dr. Sreejith TR and artistes from Kochi present a blend of traditional Kalaripayattu, which is the oldest martial art of India, with contemporary ballet.

BTangoConscious (Argentine Tango)

Venue and time: Cross Maidan, 8:35 pm - 8:50 pm

BTangoConscious has been promoting this Argentine culture in India since 2013. Tango is the only UNESCO-recognised dance and is considered as a culture hailing from Uruguay and Argentina.


Feb 4

Lunch Break Feeding the worker bees of Kala Ghoda with Kalyan Karmakar

Venue and time: Horniman Circle Gardens, 11:00 am to 1:00 pm

Kalyan Karmakar is celebrating 10 years of his Finely Chopped Walks with a lunch break in the bylanes of Fort. Join his tales and tastes from the community eateries established to service the workers of the original Central Business District. Email to book your space at Rs 400/person. (15 spots only)

Feb 5

Farmer’s Market by Samartha 

Venue and time: Cooperage Bandstand, 9:00 am to 2:00 pm

The Kala Ghoda Farmer’s Market offers a superb range of farm-fresh produce, just-picked strawberries and the best seasonal vegetables directly from the farmers of Maharashtra.

Feb 6

Mezze Mazza: Flavours of Israel Culinary workshop & tasting with Chef Efrat Devir in association with The Consulate General of Israel

Venue and time: Café Knead, 5:00 pm to 7:00 pm

Are you mad about mezze? Have you fallen for falafels? Always wanted to roll vine leaves like a boss? Join renowned Israeli chef Efrat Devir for a workshop and tasting of her favourite salads, mezze and mains. Email to reserve your place. (20 spots only)

Feb 7

Which Wine When Wine tasting workshop by Sula Vineyards

Venue and time: Ministry of New, 5:00 pm to 6:00 pm

Become a pro at enjoying a glass of wine with Sula Vineyards’ Grégoire Verdin. He will lead an exclusive tasting to navigate the delicious world of wine, and you will never have to wonder: which wine when? (30 spots only)

Feb 8

Cocktails for Dummies—A tale and taste of cocktails with Blind Gilt

Venue and time: Ministry of New, 5:00 pm to 6:00 pm
Why does 007 prefer his martini “shaken, not stirred”? And, what exactly is a martini? Vinayak Singh of Blind Gilt will lead us through the basics of cocktail creation, stories of iconic cocktails, and a tasting of some delicious drinks that can be recreated at home. (30 spots only)

Feb 9

Bombay, Mumbai, Bambai—A legendary food walk with No Footprints Mumbai

Venue and time: Pancham Puriwala, Fort, 10:30 am to 12:30 pm

There are restaurants, there are great restaurants and then, there are legendary restaurants. This walk pays homage to iconic restaurants of South Bombay that have survived over time and fed generations. One of the legends you will meet is the city’s oldest restaurant - older than Amrish Puri and serves one helluva puri! Excited yet? Email to book your place at Rs 400/person. (15 spots only)

Irani Chai vs. Parsi Raspberry, Chai and chat with Dr Kurush Dalal

Venue and time: Ideal Corner, 3.00 pm to 4.00 pm

Join anthropologist and food guru Dr Kurush Dalal for a very special afternoon of Irani chai and a chat about all things Parsi. Or is it Irani? Enthralling you with stories, as you enjoy Ideal Corner’s delicious nosh. Email at Ideal Corner at Rs 300/person. (25 spots only)

Are You Really Tasting Your Coffee?—A Cupping Workshop by Blue Tokai

Venue and time: Coffee Roasters, Kala Ghoda, 3.00 pm to 5.00 pm

Cupping is the easiest way to evaluate specialty coffee. You will learn about analysing the coffee’s aromas, flavours, mouthfeel, acidity, and aftertaste. It is for anyone who wants to learn how Blue Tokai’s roasters assess coffees before they reach you! Email to reserve your place. (20 spots only)

Feb 11

Love is Like a Box of Chocolates— An early Valentine’s Day special with Chef Rollin Lasrado

Venue and time: Smoke House Deli, Colaba, 4:00 pm to 5:00 pm

Can you think of anythin more decadent than an hour of drinking, tasting, and making chocolate? Get set for this sweet indulgence as Chef Rollin Lasrado (executive chef, Smoke House Deli) shows you exactly how to prepare a perfect Valentine’s Day surprise. (20 spots only)

Feb 12

Farmer’s Market by OOO Farms

Venue and time: Cooperage Bandstand, 9:00 am to 2:00 pm

The indigenous farming community of OOO Farms bring us a very special farmer’s market. Meet the farmers and browse their incredible produce, seasonal fruits, heirloom grains, wild foods, and chemical-free millets, pulses, honey, turmeric and oils. Enjoy desi games, delicious mithai, live music, art workshops, and much more.

Heritage Walks

Feb 4, 7, 10

Gateway Getaway - Footsteps at Apollo Bunder 

Time: 5:00 pm to 6:30 pm 

Discover a lot more to the Gateway of India than just the monument on a guided walk.

Feb 5, 8, 11

The Original New Bombay - Footsteps along Azad Maidan 

Time: 5:00 pm to 6:30 pm 

A walkthrough in a part of the city that came up when the fort walls came down. 

Feb 6, 9, 12

The Ballad Of A Pier - Footsptes in Ballard Estate 

Time: 5:00 pm to 6:30 pm 

The tale of a port, a business district, and a slice of ‘Edwardian London’—all in one walk.

Feb 4, 5, 11, 12

A Castle and a Moat - Footsteps in Fort for kids 

Time: 5:00 pm to 6:30 pm 

Boys and girls, enter inside what was once the Fort of Bombay, and understand how the city began, on a walk.

Feb 5, 8, 11

Money Matters - Footsteps on Dalal Street 

Time: 5:00 pm to 6:30 pm 

A walk through the city’s financial hub to discover locks, stocks and barrels, among other things.

Feb 5, 8, 11

Elephants, Cheetahs & Other Animals - Footsteps along Lion Gate 

Time: 5:00 pm to 6:30 pm 

A walk skirting the Naval Dockyard, once the eastern gate to the city.

Feb 5, 12

Heroes & Martyrs of 26/11 - Footsteps inside Nariman Lighthouse 

Time: 5:00 pm to 6:30 pm 

Remember the bravery and sacrifices of ordinary Mumbaikars during the terror attack on a walk inside Nariman Lighthouse, one of the targets.

Heritage walks for kids

Feb 5, 11, 12

Swaraj & The City – Footsteps around freedom for kids 

Time: 9:00 am to 10.30 am 

A walk for school children by Khaki Tours that explores Mumbai’s connections with the freedom movement.

Heritage bus ride 

Feb 4, 5, 11, 12

Fort on Four Wheels - A heritage bus ride

Time: 5:00 pm to 6.30 pm 

A ride through the heart of the city, in an open-deck bus with Khaki Tours.

* Do note that passes have to be collected by queuing up at the Heritage Help Desk at 3:00 pm everyday for the walks scheduled in the next 24 hours. Passes will be distributed on first come, first serve basis and only two passes will be given per person after registering their details with the volunteers.


Feb 4

Sex and the City 

Venue and time: CSMVS Main Lawn, 7:00 pm - 8:00 pm

Prathyush Parasuraman leads Paromita Vohra and Parmesh Shahani into an exploration of changing sexual representations in cinema, in corporations and in bustling urban India. 

Feb 5

Scripting Bollywood: The Women Behind the Bada Pardah

Venue and time: CSMVS Main Lawn, 7:00 pm to 8:00 pm
Anubha Yadav, Tanuja Chandra, Bhavani Iyer, Devika Bhagat, Urmi Juvekar and Sanyuktha Chawla Shaikh throw light on how women screenwriters are redefining Bollywood, one script at a time. 

Feb 7

Aur Suno 

Venue and time: NGMA, 6:30 pm onwards

Aur Suno unites the worlds of spoken word and solo theatre. Nirmika Singh and Kausar Munir engage in the age-old tradition of collaboration for an unforgettable show in the spirit of aur kranti, aur pyaar, aur suno

Feb 8

Irani Cafe and other Plays: A Tribute

Venue and time: CSMVS Main Lawn, 7:00 pm to 8:00 pm

Join Ratna Pathak Shah, Vivaan Shah and Divya Jagdale as they discuss actor-screenwriter Shiv Subrahmanyam’s legacy of translating stories from the page to the stage. With special readings by Kenneth Desai and Hidayat Sami.

Feb 11

Mythology and the Millennial with Devdutt Pattanaik

Venue and time: IF.BE, 10-12, Ballard Estate, Fort, 6:00 pm to 7:00 pm

What can mythology tell us about the 21st century post-truth world of climate change, political unrest and shifting personal relationships? Devdutt Pattanaik highlights subtle and complex learnings from myths that might help us chart our way forward.

Feb 12

Conscious Culture and Climate: From Individual to Systemic Action

Venue and time: CSMVS Quadrangle, 08:00 pm - 09:00 pm

What is the interplay between individual actions and systems change for climate and environmental goals? How might Lifestyle for Environment (LiFE) be activated as a mass movement towards sustainable consumption and production? Aaran Patel moderates a discussion between Dia Mirza and Sejal Mehta.


Feb 5

Bombay Bandook 

Venue and time: Cross Maidan, 7:30 pm to 8:15 pm

An Indian fusion band from Mumbai presents a blend of raag-based melody writing in a modern aesthetic.

Main Kavita Hoon by Kavita Seth 

Venue and time: Cross Maidan, 8:30 pm to 10:00 pm

A renowned Indian vocalist as well as a performer of ghazals and sufi music, Kavita performs with her musical group, Karwaan.

Feb 6

Songs of Himalayas by Shantanu Moitra; Featuring: Ani Choying, Kaushiki Chakraborty, Ambi Subramaniam

Venue and time: Cross Maidan, 8:30 pm to 10:00 pm

Conceptualised and led by Shantanu Moitra, renowned music composer of landmark films including Parineeta, 3-Idiots and Madras Cafe. Shantanu’s 100-day journey across the Himalayas led to compositions being created on the way. He intersperses this musical ensemble with riveting stories and breathtaking visuals of the mountains.

Feb 8

The Film Companion Front Row Masterclass with Raj and DK (Creators of The Family Man, Farzi)

Venue and time: Cross Maidan, 5:00 pm to 6:00 pm

Get all the behind-the-scenes dope of the much-awaited crime thriller Farzi and other landmark titles by masters of long-format story-telling, directors Raj and DK. This session, moderated by Suchin Mehrotra, is part of the Film Companion Front Row, The Kala Ghoda Edition and will be shot live. This session is enabled by Prime Video. Grab a seat, this is one session you don’t want to miss!

Feb 11

Indian Naval Symphonic Band at Cooperage

Venue and time: Cross Maidan, 11:00 am 

Also known as Indian Navy Band, established in 1945, it consists of 125 musicians today, all of whom perform in concert settings. The band has improvised on Hindustani classical and Carnatic raga in various forms and genres, particularly in fusion with the Western and Jazz music.

Feb 12

Colonial Cousins 

Venue and time: Cross Maidan, 8:00 pm - 10:00 pm

Colonial Cousins! India’s legendary multiplatinum band consisting of Hariharan and Leslee Lewis. Winner of numerous international awards, including the MTV Asia Viewers’ Choice Award and the Billboard Viewers’ Award. This will be an epic reunion after over a decade at KGAF.


Feb 5

Dastaan-E-Badi Banka (Hindi/Marathi), presented by The Shakti Ensemble in Collaboration with Goethe-Institut/Max Mueller Bhavan

Venue and time: Yashwantrao Chavan Centre, 3:30 pm to 5:30 pm

Dastan-E-Badi Banka - A tale of seven islands – Mumbai. Not just a city but an entire world in itself. Cursed and loved simultaneously by the people staying here, the megacity tolerates and supports all those who come to her. Authors, poets, painters, all the artists are fascinated by various facets of Mumbai. The labor movement, industrial empires, food culture, red light area, underworld, and whatnot. (Mature Theme - U/A 13+)

Whole Body Massage (Marathi)

Venue and time: Yashwantrao Chavan Centre, 3:30 pm to 5:30 pm

Vijay Shinde, a drunkard, and a masseur with magical fingers works in the anatomy section of an old government medical school. He preserves corpses artfully and cuts them compassionately. Vijay is in love with Lilly– a cadaver! He has preserved her body for the past three years but, soon he must let her go. (Mature Theme - A 18+)

Feb 7

Mr. Apple (Gujarati)

Venue and time: Yashwantrao Chavan Centre, 8:00 pm to 9:45 pm

“The apple doesn’t fall far from the tree”. Mr. Apple, an Ideas Unlimited play, is a two-act relationship drama complete with massive confrontations, meltdowns, catharsis, tears, and even joy. It also captures the motivational aspect of Jobs’ larger-than-life persona. (Mature Theme - U/A 13+)

Feb 8

Ek Rupiya (Hindi)

Venue and time: Yashwantrao Chavan Centre, 3:30 pm to 5:15 pm

A simple play about the simple complexities of life. A little boy and his adventures with friends, in school and even with Gods! It’s a story of innocent queries, of friendships and most importantly of trying. Since there is hope, will he find his way….. (Universal) 

Feb 10

Life Itself (English/Hindi)

Venue and time: NGMA, 7:45 pm to 9:15 pm

A new storytelling series, where the performers tell semi-autobiographical tales ranging from hilarious to poignant, and charmingly ordinary to plain weird. Packed with anecdotes about coming of age, finding companionship, identity crises, and the impact of popular culture. (Mature Theme - U/A 16+)


Feb 5

How to shoot a great moment with Mobile and DSLR camera – Talk show by Shiresh R Karrale

Venue and time: BNHS, 12:00 pm to 2:00 pm

A photography session where you will get to learn simple tricks from a master to shoot the right moment with whichever camera you have. Please bring your own DSLR camera.

Feb 7

‘Ramnarayan Blue pottery’ by Nand Kishore Prajapat

Venue and time: BNHS 12:00 pm to 2:00 pm

A hands-on session on making blue pottery. 

Feb 8

‘Phad painting’ by Nand Kishore Sharma

Venue and time: BNHS, 12:00 pm to 2:00 pm

A hands-on session of phad painting.

Feb 10

‘Madhubani painting’ by Remant Kumar Mishra

Venue: BNHS, 12:00 pm to 2:00 pm

An artistic session on learning Madhubani Art