Jaan R.Freeman artistic director of the Freeman Repertory Dance Company
writes about his Indian experience


Oct 2000

My India experience began in 1995. It was my first trip to India. Matter of fact,it was my first trip outside USA. For me it was love at first sight. The atmosphere, the people, the culture and of course the dance is what brought me back for the next four years. In 1997 I returned to India on a cultural exchange program with the Battery Dance Company. We toured for two months in India and performed in over 16 cities. Once the tour was complete I stayed on to teach modern dance and interact with the local artists. My love for India and its people grew stronger and more profound.

For the past four years I have returned to India to conduct workshops in some of the basic principles of modern dance. The response has been welcomed by the participants and the audience. The most interesting part of visiting and conducting these workshops is that each city has different energy and different views on what they thought modern dance was. As the workshop wrapped up it is wonderful to see participants feel a change in their body and in their minds. The modern dance expose has brought me to Lucknow, Madras, Calcutta, Bangalore, Delhi, Mumbai, Kerala and even to Sri Lanka. Each of the cities holds a special place in my memory of India. I must say with all this giving I left time to receive classes in Bharatanatyam with Nandini Ramani in Madras. Working up close and personal with a guru and a fine one at that is something we don't have in the west. This is a wonderful gift from India to me.

My India experience has been like turning a corner, life isn't the same anymore. I will always revisit the corner my favourite corner ``India``.