Free Public Tours

Explore the Museum with the
curatorial team every weekend.

Time: Saturday and Sunday
11:30 am English Tour
12:30 pm Hindi/Marathi Tour
Open to all.
Museum ticket applicable.
Closed on Wednesdays.


The Museum’s extensive outreach includes theatre, performance, public lectures and film as well as programmes in collaboration with other organizations.

What’s On

Mumbai Local with Junoon

At the Education Centre in the Museum Plaza

Sunday, Dec 08, 2019     5:00 pm

Mumbai Local | In Search of the Lost Worlds of Tawaifs
With Saba Dewan

Saba Dewan in conversation with Paromita Vohra

The tawaif has been a figure of fascination in the popular imagination of India. Films like Devdas, Pakeezah, Amar Prem, Umrao Jaan have created a powerful image of the tawaif in our minds - she is the sensual singer, the beautiful dancer, the temptress, the breaker of hearts, the fallen woman, the woman your wife must not be.

Seeking to understand the history of middle class women like herself, her mother and grandmother - women who had begun taking public space since the late 19thcentury - Saba Dewan's research led her to the women whose public space was snatched away from them. She saw how these histories were inextricably linked, and so began a journey that led to her film The Other Song (2009) and Tawaifnama, her first book. In Tawaifnama, we meet tawaifs like Dharmman Bibi, known for her beauty, singing and swordsmanship, who rode into battle during the 1857 revolt alongside her patron lover, and who could beat pretty much any man except one Dalip Singh in the wrestling arena. This is a different tawaif from the image imprinted in our minds.

We are delighted to invite Saba Dewan - filmmaker, writer, feminist - to Mumbai Local, to share with us her journey that culminated in Tawaifnama. She will be in conversation with Paromita Vohra - filmmaker, writer, agent of ishq, and curator of this session. Together, they will explore tawaif culture, notions of creativity they offer us, what has been lost and what persists, the relationship between pleasure and art, the intertwined histories of women. They will also discuss the ethics of documenting when writing about a family that is living and aspiring to social acceptance after their profession has been shamed.

Please join us on Sunday for a conversation that delves deeply into the history and experience of the tawaif, and its resonance in our lives.

Curated by Paromita Vohra

Venue: Education Centre
Entry free with Museum ticket
Register via BookMyShow


About Junoon

The Dr. Bhau Daji Lad Museum is glad to partner with Junoon, co-founded by Sanjana Kapoor and Sameera Iyengar, to present Mumbai Local - a community arts initiative. Mumbai Local dream is to build generous and inclusive communities of people across Mumbai by embedding the arts into our collective neighbourhood experience.

Live Music

With the Natural Streets for the Performing Arts (NSPA)

Visitors can be a part of this exciting outdoor experience. NSPA performances are held at the Museum Plaza through the year on the first Sunday of every month.

Sunday, Dec 01, 2019

Uttarkhandi Folk
Mountone Saaz 3 (Suresh Kala)
4:00 pm - 5:00 pm

Uttarbhartiya Folk
Achchai Pandey & Manoj Sharma
5:00 pm - 6:00 pm

Sunday, Dec 15, 2019

Bengali folk music
Basundhara Banerjee
4:00 pm - 5:00 pm

Pop fusion
Shubhashish Upadhyay & Bhavik Mehta
5:00 pm - 6:00 pm


The Natural Streets for Performing Arts (NSPA) is a non-profit initiative to revive a culture of public performances and support the livelihoods of artists. Launched in October 2012, NSPA hosts musical performances for a total of 37 hours every week across 6 major railway stations on the Western and Central Rail Networks, and the Horniman Circle Gardens at Fort, Mumbai.

NSPA seeks to reclaim public spaces for the arts encouraging greater interaction between artists and the community, creating vibrant spaces of cultural interaction and energising the very city and its people with greater art consciousness. They work towards securing the livelihoods of independent artists across diverse art forms, thus, enabling them to follow their passion and take their art to new and larger audiences.