Aarti Neharsh's The Song We Sang set to premiere at Kashish Mumbai International Queer Film Festival

This short film by Aarti Neharsh had its European premiere at London Indian Film Festival, where it got a Special Jury Mention
A still from The Song We Sang
A still from The Song We Sang

A love story of two women featuring Serena Walia and Ayushi Gupta, Aarti Neharsh's short film The Song is all set to premiere at the prestigious Kashish Mumbai International Queer Film Festival after winning hearts and a Special Jury Mention at it its European premiere at London Indian Film Festival.

The short is nominated in two categories ‘Indian Narrative Shorts section’ and ‘The Riyad Wadia Award for Best Emerging Indian Filmmaker’ at Kashish, which will be held online from July 22 to 30. 

A romantic bittersweet tale about two people finding something in each other that they have not found before, this 20-minute short explores the warmth of an instant connection, heartbreak and choices.

 Neharsh co-wrote the script with Chintan Bhatt, who is also a co-producer in the project, along with Rahul Tejwani and Manan Bhatt of Green Chutney Films. 

“It has been an overwhelming journey so far right from making the film to now bringing it to people who have received it with so much love and I am really excited for the Indian premiere. It is definitely special because it is also the first time the film will reach people here back home,” says 24-year-old Aarti.

<em>The poster of The Song We Sang</em>
The poster of The Song We Sang

What's more, actor-director Nandita Das who starred in Fire, India’s first film exploring the love story of two women is all praise for the short film. "The Song We Sang celebrates the beginning of a romance between two strangers. The short film is simple and sweet. It treasures and mourns its moments at the same time" she says.

<em>Filmmaker Aarti Neharsh</em>
Filmmaker Aarti Neharsh

The film explores the idea of such choices one makes and its possibilities leading to either a regret for life or a decision that changes your life forever.

In this film, two strangers, Krishna and Alia,  meet for the first time on a festive night of Navratri- a nine-day Indian traditional dance festival. Romance blossoms between them as they walk the night in the lanes of Ahmedabad exchanging mythology trivia, laughter, street food and experiences of life only to realise it could lead to more.

"Two women freely roaming the city, sharing a safe space in the absence of a patriarchal gaze and falling in love was something that I’ve longed to see on screen. This was a very instinctive thought for this love story. I really wanted to see two women walking the streets at night absolutely unapologetically — something that almost never happens in reality," adds Aarti.

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