SHILLONG: The much-anticipated The Hills Festival - Spirit of Meghalaya, returns in all its glory with its fourth edition on December 1 and 2, promising a spectacular celebration of Meghalaya's rich culture, mesmerising music, and delectable foraged flavours. Set against the backdrop of the serene Umiam Lake in Umbir village, this homegrown music festival, organised by the visionary team at HYPE - Helping Young People Entertainment, in association with Meghalaya Tourism, is a true embodiment of the Spirit of Meghalaya.
HYPE Media & Event Agency, an empanelled organization with the Government of Meghalaya, spearheaded the festival in 2018 and with HYPE’s ongoing commitment towards community empowerment, the festival aims to raise cultural awareness, generate youth employment, and provide curated experiences for Meghalaya's visitors.
The event is organised in association with Meghalaya Tourism promises an unparalleled experience against the breathtaking backdrop of Umiam Lake in Umbir village located just 45 minutes from the city. The Hills Festival is a two-day homegrown celebration embodying the spirit of Meghalaya; a melting pot for music, art, culinary, and culture enthusiasts. Throughout its three editions, the festival has played host to renowned artists such as Yung Raja, Bloodywood, Su-Real, the f16s, and Lisa Mishra etc.
This year again, the festival will celebrate the heart of Jaiñtia cuisine with the return of the Forage Aisle where culinary experts from Jaiñtia Hills will host different ingredients indigenous to the place. The festival will also host the Pig Out Affair contest showcasing the finest pork delicacies prepared by local culinary cooks. The festival also offers a vibrant flea market with games and activities an additional kids play area and reading sessions for children for a more inclusive environment. After a very successful campsite last year, the festival also offers comfortable camping tents for an immersive experience and cultural exchange at The Hills Campsite.
To ensure ease and accessibility for attendees, the festival will have water, and charging stations strategically placed for convenience and available throughout the event. The stage design is also very eco-friendly and has an innovative approach, incorporating the use of bamboo and maintaining eco-architecture, reflecting the festival’s commitment towards the creation of an environment conscious and sustainable atmosphere.
The festival's lineup this year features a blend of modern beats and traditional tunes, showcasing a diverse range of genres and artists. Canadian Indian SVDP promises to bring a unique flavour to the festival, captivating the audience with his distinct sound. One of his notable achievements is to open for 50 Cent in Mumbai.
Among the headliners is Nikhil D'Souza, renowned for his Bollywood hits with over 5 million listeners on Spotify for his popular tracks like "Mere Bina" (69 million) and "Shaam,". In addition, indie music artist Anoushka Maskey a singer-songwriter, based in Sikkim/Mumbai will also perform.
Adding to the musical diversity is Tsumyoki, the winner of this year's prestigious award the MTV Europe Music Awards in the Best Indian Local Act, beating the likes of Divine, Mali, When Chai Met Toast and Dee MC. Other artists to perform include Parimal Shais and Roman Kyn. Giving the platform to regional artists like Reble aka Daiaphi Lamare who has made waves with her performances in stages like Boiler Room Tv, Bacardi NH7 Weekender, and many other stages will perform. The dynamic duo Shillong's producer Adiel Massar aka adL and rapper Dappest, Dappest x adL are also slated to perform at the festival. McLivin also known as Eli Budnah is a talented musician, DJ, and remixer who has a mass fan base in Shillong.
The festival presents an immersive experience at the Electronic Hills Stage, featuring the innovative beats of Blot!, a pioneer in the electronic music scene. Blot! has made his mark with appearances in Boiler Room and is popular amongst techno music fans. Other artists to perform in the electronic stage are Nida, who has played for the biggest stages from Magnetic Fields to DGTL, and Echoes of the Earth having shared the limelight with Stingray and Jensen Interceptor in India. Smokey, a powerhouse DJ and music producer from Mumbai who has performed in the grand stages of NH7 Weekender, Life in Color festival and many others is set to make the participants dance. Other artists to perform on the electronic stage are Film, Demiurgic, Arpan, Varun, Nishant and others.
Passes for day 1 are charged at Rs 999, day 2 at Rs 1099 and Season Pass at Rs 1799 and the same are available at Skillboxes.com.