India is changing as a nation. With more acceptance of fringe concepts such as homosexuality, gap-year and mind-expansion, we’re moving away from the idea of patriarchy to one that’s more open and caring. We’re becoming like the West, but in other ways we’re also seeing their flaws and improving ourselves as well. Although we occupy more than 30% of the total Indian population, we feel like we don’t have a say in the matters of our country. Politics seems like a blur, and corruption is something we’ve learned to live with all our lives. We see religion has a passing phase, and we want more from life – something different and something we feel like we want.
By 2020, our country’s average age will be 29, and we will become the youngest country in the world. That is why we feel like we need to explore our potential to the fullest.
Youth culture movements are sweeping India in a big way, especially in 2017. We have open mics, poetry slams, reading events, and concerts that are organized by our friends. We are all trying our best to create something worthwhile, while we are young; and we’re not satisfied by being mediocre. We want to enjoy our time, as well as create change that society needs. We are rebels and entrepreneurs at the same time!
The spoken word community in young India has taken everyone by storm. Everyone is out there exploring themselves with new ideas, thoughts and concepts. With the help of spoken poetry, victims that went quiet for years spoke up, disenfranchised youth expressed their anger, and frustrated leaders talked about their hidden secrets. Spoken word has an immense power in the world that is changing India for the better.
The best part about spoken word nights is the fact that no subject is taboo, no human is judged, and everyone has a say that’s equal and performance-worthy. The community is supportive, which is something that few Indians tend to do anyway, and the vibe is always happy and positive. Youth looking for a break, or a way out of their fixed mindset can explore themselves at any of the local Spoken word events.
Shantanu Anand runs the Airplane Poetry Movement, which focuses on advancing stage-poetry type of performances for a few years now. His assertion is straightforward – “Everyone has an opinion. Spoken word gives them a way to share that opinion which is not just a Facebook status or an essay.”
As a culture, Indians are moving away from show, and focusing more on tell.
Giving a voice to something that’s deep inside our country’s youth population is what Open Mics offer to the table. They provide a soul to the country, and they let our spirit flourish even under deeply disturbing conditions. If everyone had a voice in our country, we would all be better off together rather than separated. Open Mics (across the land) have opened up our hearts to a better way of living life. A life that’s cultured and not cultural, loving and not hatred-fueled and passionate and not anger-infused.
It’s a performance art, it’s a single day event, and it’s a simple person talking about complicated things. A format of open mics that’s really become popular is the stand-up comic. Comics have been giving young India a voice ever since the AIB days, and they’ve become the back-bone of young culture through YouTube.
With so many groups and supportive people in the field, Open Mics are one of the best ways to figure out what our country’s youth culture is interested in. When people come to our country, they check out our heritage. But now, they’re also interested in our potential.
With amazing movies such as 3 Idiots and Taare Zameen Par begging us to explore our passions, young India has heard. Not only have we started the most number of startups in India these last few years, but also we have the most number of successes in our Indian history. The GDP is rising, employment is increasing, and we are working longer hours to achieve our dreams. We don’t want fast cars and big houses anymore; we want to create our own sense of “happiness”.
Often you hear stories of frustrated employees quitting their jobs and pursuing other passions. These stories are far too common in India these days, as we have become disenfranchised from the 9-5 lives that our parents have lived through. We are more “growth mindset” oriented and want to succeed beyond our wildest dreams, but also create a significant impact on the world while we’re here. This is why we live to achieve our passionate goals, and not just live every day to fulfil obligations and merits that our fathers and mothers have set for us.
This is the entrepreneurship wave that is sweeping the nation.