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Kathak maestro bats for young talents

Dancer-choreographer Chetna Jalan feels strongly about the need of the classical dancers to keep pace with the changing times.

india Updated: Nov 15, 2006 17:35 IST

Dancer-choreographer Chetna Jalan feels strongly about the need of the classical dancers and gurus to move ahead with the changing times.

“Time is at a premium today. How can you expect today’s generation, which lives life in the fast lane, to understand something that is not in sync with its lifestyle? But that doesn’t mean that our great classical traditions should die down or be corrupted.”

So, in order to lead by example, she has choreographed a show of Kathak, which has, among other items, dances based on Sufi songs along with flamenco steps. “I’ve tried to marry the two forms by not simply putting the different dance forms together but by blending the two in a manner which looks natural,” says the Kolkata-based dancer.                                                             

The other items on the day’s schedule include a duet of Kathak and contemporary dance steps, dance with the element of ropework and another one involving acrobatics, which is based on a poem by Shakti Chattopadhyay.

As Chetna relaxes at her renowned vocalist mother, Som Tiwari’s house, Sangeet Shyamala in Vasant Vihar, she adds that it is easier to be passionate about dance and experimentation in Kolkata than in Delhi. Time for some introspection, Delhi?

(The dance performance will be held at Kamani Auditorium, on November 15 and 16, at 6.30 pm).