New Delhi

After a quite demanding weekend with performances in Mumbai and New Delhi, we are now taking a break in a small hotel in New Delhi.

The shows in Mumbai and New Delhi could not have been more different- Mumbai took place in an upscale venue in a warehouse area, the Blue Frog, and we had a bit of a difficult time since it seems to be common that clubs here also cater as restaurants. So, we played our shows, while people were seated at tables and were having dinner- it was a little odd. The Glitterbug & Ronni Shendar live show also took place under special conditions, since we were not allowed to use the back screen for the projection because of the logos of the sponsors of the event… ouch.

Performing here is a totally different experience anyways. Especially in Mumbai, since the city is absolutely mixed, having poverty and wealth just centimeters away from each other. If you walk in the city at night, one literally has to climb over sleeping people in the streets everywhere. It feels like there is no separation between the extreme ends in this society, at least not as far as the public space goes. You can have fancy apartment buildings and 5 star hotels directly neighboring slums, and since there are millions of people living in the streets, you find beggars and homeless people everywhere. And at the same time, segregation between rich and poor is absolute and merciless (and confronts us all with our own privileges, coming from the wealthy west and trying to somehow deal with our strange position here).

The show in New Delhi was a totally different (and absolutely wonderful) experience, since the local Goethe Institute invited us to perform in their Garden. We had a few hundred very diverse people in front of us, and even though it took a while to warm them up- after a bit, the whole thing actually turned into a wild and amazing party, that sadly was over at 11p.m., due to the fact that it was open air and also because New Delhi (and India in general) has very harsh rules considering closing times etc. But we all were so glad to have had this experience and we’re all so thankful to have met all the amazing people at the Goethe Institute New Delhi!


The day after, we met a Berlin based artist who was invited for a project in the Goethe New Delhi also downstairs in our hotel for breakfast, and he invited us to join him for a picnic which was the closing event of the annual Queerfest here in New Delhi (thanks Ins!!!). Much can be written about issues of gay rights here, but it should be noted that basically homosexuality has been illegal until this summer, so this was certainly a very special event for the scene here.


The park where the picnic took place also caters as one of the main cruising areas in New Delhi, and this is how the place sounds like during day time.

Over the course of the afternoon, something like 50 people arrived, and the queer scene seems to be quite mixed and diverse. Here is a little snippet of the picnic ambience

After the picnic, we went back to the hotel. The only form of public transportation here is rickshaws and taxis, while one can’t just stop a cab in the street. So, if you are not in a place where you can just order one by phone, you are more or less stuck with the little motorized rickshaws, and here is the sound of one of the rides. It might sound a little muffled; that is due to the fact that i had to record from inside my back to avoid wind noise in the microphones.


Sadly, I did not feel well this morning, i caught myself some strange fever that hit me out of the blue. So i did not join the bunch for the daily trip… so this is how my day sounded like. Basically, when indoors, the sound of the air-conditioning is everywhere… and one can’t leave the windows open due to the mosquitos that seem to be even more harmful during daytime because here in the north of India, they carry Dengue Fever. For sure somthing that i would be very happy to miss out on…

We will have two more days here, and after that we will be off to Calcutta and Bangalore for the weekend.

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