Dancing in character
What: Ahsas contemporary dance
festival by Sumeet Nagdev Dance Arts
Where: St Andrews College, St Domnic Road, Behind Holy Family Hospital, Bandra (West)
When: April 25 to 28. For full schedule and timings, visit sumeetnagdevdancearts.in/ahsas
Cost: Ticket prices start at Rs 300. Tickets and are available at the SNDA studio in Dadar (West), at Rhythm House in Kala Ghoda and at the venue
From Shakuntala and Arjuna to Baba Bulleh Shah and even Batman, contemporary dance company Sumeet Nagdev Dance Arts (SNDA) plans to bring alive a range of characters and personalities on stage next weekend.
The fifth edition of SNDA’s annual dance festival, Ahsas, to be held from April 25 to 28, will feature a line-up of seven dance compositions featuring Sumeet Nagdev, the students of his academy and three international artistes.
The theme for Ahsas 2013 is ‘Celebrating drama in dance’, and one of the highlights of the festival is Bulleya, a piece that will feature Nagdev reciting poems by 17th-century philosopher Baba Bulleh Shah and dancing solo to live Sufi music by London-based band Circle of Sound.
“This is our way of paying homage to Bulleh Shah, whose existentialist poems talk about giving up one’s ego to create a better society,” says Soumik Datta, a sarod player who founded Circle of Sound along with percussionist Bernhard Schimpelsberger two years ago.
Besides Bulleya, the show on April 28 will also feature Rise, a new composition choreographed by Nagdev based on the life of superhero character, Batman. Conceived as a grand spectacle with dramatic lights, gymnastics and mallakhamb, the piece will include characters such as the Joker, Bane and Catwoman.
“I was inspired by filmmaker Christopher Nolan, who managed to create a new world in cinema,” says Nagdev, who founded SNDA six years ago. “I wanted to create the same magic on stage.”
On April 27, Ahsas will showcase, among other acts, a contemporary Bharata Natyam performance by Parijat Naik based on the mythological figure of Shakuntala and a comic dance theatre performance, directed by British theatre artiste Fenella Kelly.
“Last year, I felt that Ahsas was becoming too serious, so we wanted to do something funny and artistic this year,” says Nagdev, who will perform in the dance theatre with Kelly and actor Sasha Nagdev. “This comedy brings together theatre, dance and music.”
The first two days of Ahsas, on April 25 and 26, will feature master classes by Nagdev and the international artistes for those interested in dance.
What: Quatro 2013, a group exhibition
Where: Art Musings, 1, Admiralty Building, Colaba Cross Lane
When: April 18 to May 31, Monday to Friday, 11 am to 7 pm; Saturdays, 11 am to 5.30 pm (Sundays closed)
Entry is free
Four masters of contemporary and modern Indian art are showcasing works hitherto unseen in Mumbai, in an exhibition titled Quarto 2013, which is underway this weekend. The selected canvases reflect the styles, motifs and muses that characterise their creations.
The exhibition brings together a total of 25 paintings by Anjolie Ela Menon, Satish Gujral, KG Subramanian and A Ramachandran, all created over the past five years.
Menon’s portraits of women draw on her personal life, with the jharokha or window a recurring theme of her works, says gallerist Sangeeta Chopra.
Ramachandran, meanwhile, draws images from villages in India that he travels to every year, and the life of the tribals. Gujral’s paintings have seldom been tied to a central theme; they are known for his impeccable technique and the usage of myriad colours, especially golden.
“These hand-picked canvases give a glimpse into the four master artists’ styles that they are widely known for,” says Chopra.
What: Musical soiree
Where And When: At Kashinath Ghanekar Hall, Thane (West), on Saturday, from 4.30 pm to 11 pm; at Gadkari Rangayatan, Thane (West), on Sunday, from 8 am to 2 pm
Cost: Ticket prices start at R100
Call: 98900-83862, 98921-92386
What: Flute recital by
Where: Ravindra Natya Mandir, Sayani Marg, Prabhadevi
When: Sunday, 6.30 am
Entry is free
Vocal chords and flute notes are all set to make this weekend quite musical, with performances by a number of noted artistes in Thane, and a flute recital by Pravin Godkhindi in Prabhadevi.
In the first instance, the Vasantrao Deshpande Sangeet Sabha, established by the veteran musician’s pupil and stage actor Chandrakant Limaye, is organising a musical soiree over the weekend. Limaye will perform on Sunday morning at Gadkari Rangayatan.
Among others who will sing are Shrinivas Joshi, son and pupil of the legendary Bhimsen Joshi; Bhuvanesh Komkali, grandson of the late Kumar Gandharva; senior thumri specialist Ajay Pohankar and popular singer Devaki Pandit.
Vasantrao Deshpande (1925-1983) was a noted classical singer and stage actor. He won accolades for his singing prowess from Begum Akhtar, the empress of ghazal and thumri.
Deshpande spent impressionable years in pre-Partition Lahore and absorbed the musical influences of the Ustads of the Punjab area. Deshpande immortalised the character of a singing Ustad in the play Katyar Kaljaat Ghusli, which had over 3,000 shows, a record of sorts.
“We have been around for 12 years and have presented leading vocalists in different theme-based programmes. This time round, we will feature 10 well-known and talented singers in the course of our events,” says Limaye, who also enacted the role of the Ustad in the later version of the Katyar play.
Pravin Godkhindi, the young flautist who will perform at an event organised by cultural organisation Pancham Nishad, is the latest sensation from Bangalore. He has trained under his father Venkatesh Godkhindi, a well-known flautist from Karnataka.
Pravin says he has always loved to play raga Bhairav.
“Ragas keep alluring me. They provide me with emotional nourishment,” says Pravin. He will be accompanied on the tabla by Ojas Adhiya.