The festive season of Raas Leela is in Assam and like the previous years, this year too Basanta Kumar Baruah and Bobby Sarma Baruah successfully organized Raas Leela from November 23 to 25, under the banner of BB Creation at the Srimanta Sankaradeva International Auditorium, of the Sankaradeva Kalakshetra, Guwahati.
The cultural extravaganza celebrated its 10-year anniversary this year which started with the participation of Bodo, Karbi, Deuri, Mising and tea tribe communities, performing Raas in their own dialects.
Till 2009, the culturally conscious people in Assam have been witnessing the Raas festival in Majuli in the form of Bhaona or in the form of idols depicting the Sishu Leela of Lord Krishna in places of Lower Assam like Nalbari, Barpeta, Howly, Mirza, etc.
However, from 2009 onwards, it has been made possible for the people of Guwahati to enjoy the various nuances of this highly traditional and revered Sattriya culture through the endeavour of Guwahati-based Basanta Kumar Baruah, who is the founder secretary of BB Creation. The play ‘Sri Krishna Purnanga Raasleela’ has integrated various ethnic groups, and it has, in the process, played a vital role in espousing the rich cultural legacy and also strengthening the thread of brotherhood as well as unity and amity among the different communities in the State.
The design and shape of the Sampurna Raas Leela was completely revitalized this year with greater refinement of means in performance and presentation, in compliance with the Raas Kriya episode of Sankardeva’s Kirtan Ghosa. The three day festival was presided over by a host of dignitaries. The opening day of Raas Leela on November 23 was inaugurated by Chief Vigilance Commissioner of Assam, Himangshu Sekhar Das. The presentation of the show on the opening day showcased the performances of film actress Aime Baruah, veteran stage actor Debabrat Dutta, Diganta Bhuyan and many others.
The energetic performances by the cast of artistes, the lavish settings and traditional decor made the audiences awestruck. The play also owes a lot to the painstaking directorial efforts of Basanta Kumar Baruah, who ensured that his vision was faithfully interpreted.
The Raas Leela dances were directed by noted artiste Naren Chandra Baruah. Lighting was done under the supervision of Tapan Kumar Baruah. The final day of the show was inaugurated by the General Secretary of Asom Nepali Natya Sammelan, Purna Kumar Sarma, with the lighting up of the traditional lamp by Pranjal Saikia, President of BB Creation. Raas was presented by Nepali artistes in their own dialect. The crowds and connoisseurs alike were highly impressed by the quality and creativity of the performances on all three days.