Dance, singing, fashion, drama -- Calcutta Youth Meet, the inter-college fest organised by Script Productions, had it all. The fifth edition of the annual fest drew participation from around 1,200 students from more than 11 institutions in Bengal and beyond.
The prelims were held virtually in July and August. The finals were held on October 9 at Gyan Manch. Participants competed in 14 online and six offline events in four categories --- Fine arts, Performing arts, Literary arts, and Informal.
Script Productions is an independent group of school and college students from across India who share a passion for media in general and films in particular.
“Our aim is to provide a platform to students across different fields. This was the first time we had a blend of offline and online events. We did not expect such a huge turnout this year. We were pleasantly surprised to see how parents also encouraged their children to participate and perform,” said Shinjan Mitra, the 24-year-old founder of Script Productions.
Apart from competing and cheering for friends, young entrepreneurs had set up stalls in the Gyan Manch arena. From handmade jewellery and apparel to resin collectibles, the makeshift marketplace was buzzing at all times.
“This is my first offline event after the pandemic. I mainly operate through Facebook and Instagram. We had to increase our inventory when we learnt about this opportunity to set up a stall. I was excited and nervous at the same time seeing the response,” said Shreya Samanta, a 2021 graduate from the National Institute of Fashion Technology (NIFT), Kolkata. Shreya runs the fashion start-up Barbet along with Debalina Banerjee, a 2021 Commerce postgraduate from the University of Calcutta, and Aishwarya Karar, a second-year postgraduate Finance student of the University of Calcutta.
Those who ruled offline events
Sadak, the Presidency University team, bagged the top spot in Act-a-Play, the street play competition.
Kolkata’r Guptodhon was a treasure hunt that left clues for teams to follow. Eccentric Explorers, a group of college students, came first.
Oindrilla Kundu and Subhangi Sanyal, both first-year postgraduate students of Sociology at Jadavpur University, danced their way to the first spot in Terpsichorean Twist, the duet dance competition. “Going up on stage after almost two years was overwhelming for me. The ambience helped me calm down. We enjoyed every moment of the fest. I couldn’t be happier to get back to offline fests,” said Oindrilla.
Students put their best foot forward in The Devil Wears Prada, the fashion show saw. A group of seven students from colleges around Kolkata walked the ramp on the theme ‘Textiles of India’.
Three Kolkata-based bands, not necessarily from any particular college, drummed up a beat in Battle of Bands. Turn Back Cave won the competition by belting out an original number.
Miss Calcutta was undoubtedly the most awaited competition in the fest. Subhangi Roy, a 2021 English graduate from St. Xavier’s College, Kolkata, was crowned the winner.
What was buzzing online
Literary heads participated in events like Vadvivad (debate), Scribbles (writing competition), Knospe (corporate etiquette), Kavyantaar (poetry slam) and Prashnottari (quiz).
For lovers of performing arts, there were events like Rongin Falgun (2 minutes to fame), Beatraw (beatboxing) and Vyang Jung (rap battle).
Those with an artistic flair participated in competitions like Chhobiwala (photography), Drag Queen (makeup), Mukh Akriti (face painting), Monochromatic Illustrations (art), Intricacy (mandala art) and Vigyapanam Nirman (poster making).