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Primary Projects

Azamgarh Creative Cluster

ITRHDs first project involved the comprehensive development of three extraordinary villages in Azamgarh District, UP, each with a strong and living heritage, and each suffering from poverty, lack of basic amenities and infrastructure, and the danger of losing precious traditions.

The village of Nizamabad specializes in a unique black pottery, often embellished with silver. These potters are said to have migrated from Kutch in the time of Aurangzeb and have been the recipient of many national awards. The nearby village of Mubarkpur, home to thousands of weavers of silk "Banarsi" saris with gold and silver zari work, finds mention in the travels of Ibn Battuta 400 years back. The third village, Hariharpur possesses a classical music tradition where every Brahmin family can boast of one or more vocal and/or instrumental musicians. This tradition has also existed for at least 400 years, depending solely on the training and guidance provided by the elders.

In Azamgarh, ITRHD has pursued a two-pronged strategy, focusing on specialized initiatives in each village, but also on developing the "Creative Cluster" as a whole. In addition to ensuring the continued vitality of the traditions and improving the overall economic and living situations of the artists and musicians, we work on community development, having established a primary school in one village, skill training in several areas, and an experiment with solar energy. See the full story on each village at Hariharpur Musicians Village, Nizamabad Potters Village , Mubarakpur Weavers Village.

AZAMGARH FESTIVALS are organized each year in Delhi and Lucknow, giving urban audiences the opportunity to learn about and experience the Azamgarh traditions, and providing the musicians and artisans with the opportunity to communicate with and sell directly to these new patrons. Through these, we are also changing the general perception of Azamgarh, showing the rest of India that it is the home of multiple great traditions. See Azamgarh And Patiala Cultural Festivals.