Nirala in B’Nat
Thursday, February 12, the Hindi Akademi, Delhi, presented an intriguing Bharata Natyam concept by Priya Venkataraman based on poet Suryakanth Tripathi Nirala's poetry, at the Triveni Kala Sangam. Based on verses from his famous ‘Shiv ki Shakti Pooja’, the dance was set to the Bharata Natyam musical format by Sudha Raghuraman. Musical and literary inputs came from critic Manjari Sinha and Dr. Jyotish Joshi. Another time, with prior warning?
A new Bharata Natyam work on the Ganga? Yes indeed, from Malavika Sarukkai, no less. Called ‘Ganga - Nitya Vaahini - The Eternal River', it premieres at the India Habitat Centre on Tuesday, February 17 at 6.30 pm. Supported by the RA Association (UK), this show promises to “extend the boundaries of the Bharata Natyam repertoire.”
“In the process I have engaged with the very language of dance challenging myself to find new words. In each of the four dance compositions, I use different textures of soundscape, rhythm and dance design. The language of the songs chosen is pan-Indian, from 15th century poet Tansen to commissioned contemporary lyrics by S.V. Seshadri and Priya Sarukkai Chabria,” says Sarukkai. Please collect invitations first from the Programme Desk at the IHC! Samir Akika
The Gati Forum for young dancers and dance enthusiasts has a workshop coming up on February 18, 19 and 20 from 3 to 6 pm daily, at the Goethe Institute (Max Mueller Bhavan), KG Marg. Entry by registration, last date today, Friday the 13th (ooh, scary!), so quickly call Mehneer at 9871013335.
And even if you don’t know to glare, as all contemporary Western dancers must to show they’re serious, Dusseldorf-based Samir Akika will show you, having learnt from the best glarer of them all, Pina Bausch of Wuppertal, Germany.
The workshop begins with a class by Julio Iglesias Ungo on a technique “that devises simple movement patterns that enable movement on the floor” by ‘keeping the being centred’. “These concepts are then developed further to train the body to move on the ground more efficiently.” (Thought that’s what Kuchipudi, Odissi and B’Nat did, but hey, we want it new).
In the second half of the workshop, led by Samir Akika, “By research and improvisation each participant learns to find and create his or her personal movement material, which is also shared with the others with the goal of mutual enrichment...” Urr! Sounds woolly to me but then I’m a bad old biddy who’s looked at way too many writhing spandex posteriors doing time-pass and making like they’re so meaningful. So never mind me. Go, go and register.
Radhakrishnan Jayaraman (aka ‘GVR’) and his sister Vijayalakshmi, are two superb Chennai-based Carnatic violinists in the seventh gen of musical descent from Saint Thyagaraja himself. Their father, Lalgudi Jayaraman, is the violin maestro that we grew up hearing. Pandit Ravi Shankar has invited this talented brother-sister duo to perform on Maha Shivratri (February 23), at 6.30 pm, at his center, opposite the Bulgarian Embassy (and behind Jesus & Mary College) Chanakyapuri.