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April 2018
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- Chant for Women's History Month (March)

This month's thoughts come to you from the freezing cold of Minneapolis, where I made a brief but joyous visit to reunite with my high school friends. The simple pleasure of connecting with gal pals with whom you once shared lunches, brief crushes, sports, gossip and mark sheets cannot be replicated at any other phase of your life.

My school mates just happen to be extraordinary women. Many firsts in our class batch from Presentation Convent Church Park are now Cabinet Ministers, Academic leaders, medical experts, CEOs and National Arts Awardees. However, all these prefixes fall away as do the years when we gathered.

Except for me, nobody else in the group is in the arts although one dynamo is on the board of the Guthrie Theatre and a generous arts patron. Still, we attended the opera, a jazz concert and spoke in unison about the arts being the humanizing glue to our lives.

Read on...

ROVING EYE: A section of impressions, images and inspirations
Curated by Anita Ratnam


- Dancer Revathi Ramachandran is to be the new director of Kalakshetra Foundation, Chennai, for a term of 3 years. She succeeds Priyadarsini Govind to the post that has been vacant for the past 10 months. Trained in the Melattur style of Bharatanatyam by Mangudi Dorairaj Iyer, Revathi is the director of Kala Sadhanalaya in Chennai.

- Madras Craft Foundation and Friends of Dakshina Chitra presented the DAKSHINA CHITRA VIRUDHU to R Muthukannammal, Sadir dancer from Viralimalai, Trichy, for excellence and lifetime contribution to Sadir dance, the mother of Bharatanatyam, at Dakshina Chitra, Chennai, on March 17, 2018.

- Guru Pankaj Charan Odissi Research Foundation in association with NALCO presented ADI GURU PANKAJ CHARAN DAS PARAMPARA SANMAN 2018 to Dr. Ratna Roy on March 17, 2018 at Rabindra Mandap, Bhubaneswar. Titles for outstanding contributions: Guru Niranjan Biswal - BINAKARA for Odissi music, Guru Bijay Kumar Barik - MADELI for Odissi mardal, Harapriya Swain - GAUNI SAMPRADA for Odissi vocal, Amrita Das - SHASHIMANI NACHUNI SAMPRADA for Odissi dance. Odissi dancer Sanchita Bhattacharya received the MAHARI AWARD.

- The Dhananjayans will be honoured with the SHRESTA KALA PRACHAARAK award by Ganesha Natyalaya of Guru Saroja Vaidyanathan on April 9, 2018 at Delhi Tamil Sangam, New Delhi.

- The 32nd annual Isadora Duncan Dance Awards honored local dance artists by acknowledging their outstanding achievements in an IZZIES ceremony and celebration on March 26, 2018 at Brava Theater Center in San Francisco. Abhinaya's 2016 fall production 'Vaanara Leela - Monkeys in the Ramayana' (Artistic Direction: Mythili Kumar and Rasika Kumar) won for Oustanding Achievement in Performance - Company. This was the first time an Indian dance company has won an Izzie in this category.

- Subraya Bhat (1946 - 2018) by Akshara Bharadwaj
It is with great grief that we try to cope with the irreplaceable loss of Subraya Bhat, a prolific theatre personality- actor, writer and director, 'Method-Drama Specialist', and a student of Prof. Ranganath Bharadwaj, on 14th March 2018.


- Sparsh presents
Murchhana: Eternal spirit of music
By Sharmila Biswas & OVM

April 6, 2018 Kolkata

- Adishakti premieres

April 7, 2018 Pondicherry

- Guru Shradha presents
Tribute to Guru Kelucharan Mohapatra

April 7, 2018 Milpitas, CA

- Nandanik presents
Vilaya: The Confluence

Apr 13 & 14, 2018 Carnegie, PA

- NCPA presents
Mudra Dance Festival

Tata Theatre, Mumbai
April 13, 21 & 22, 2018

- Sweating Saris
By Priya Srinivasan & Ramya Harishankar

April 20 - 27, 2018 CA & WA

- Natya presents
Rama Vaidyanathan's Vivartana

Apr 29, 2018 Naperville, IL

Let me put it this way: if you want to transcend the notion of spectacle, perhaps consider not putting on a show. Instead, get some of your friends together in a room with ugly light, and stand still for an hour staring blankly and silently at a wall. Perhaps, for effect, you could get your cat to watch you do it.
The point here is that, as artists, we need to be wary of becoming victim to our own mania for concept. Yes, we want our work to be structured around an idea, emotion or enquiry, but we need to remember that we are not elaborating a formula. The current vogue for exhaustive intellectualisation is the victory of commerce over art. It is the triumph of theory over practice. Of the tagline over the story. It's the ticking of boxes. KPIs, brand personalities and all that dehumanising, reductionist nonsense.
When it's good, contemporary dance is thrilling, exuberant and inspiring. And there is plenty of great content. In 2015 alone, Lucy Guerin's Motion Picture, Sue Healey's On View and Tao Dance Theater's No 5 have carved themselves in my memory; even if the latter did contain lots of rolling around. But when I sit for an hour and watch someone sit, walk around a bit, lay on the ground, get dressed and walk off, I leave with nothing.
('Is that Dance? A writer's response to recent dance trends,' by Paul Ransom of Dance Informa)

- Samarpana organizes
Mohiniattam workshop
By Bharati Shivaji

April 7 - 9, 2018 Bangalore

- Chinmaya Vishwavidyapeeth organizes
Summer Arts Intensive
Bharatanatyam workshop by Ramaa Bharadvaj

April 23 - 29, 2018 Pune

- Nadam and Ananya organise
Abhinaya workshop
By Bragha Bessell

Apr 25 - May 1, 2018 Bangalore


- You Gotta Believe
Directed, animated etc. by Nina Paley

- Charulatha
Shruthi Namboodiri, through this audio-visual representation titled Charulata, attempts to reinvent the beauty of Ray's cinematic virtuosity by placing the story of Charu and Amal at the time of national emergency in India.

- Kathak - The Dance of Vibrance - Guru Rohini Bhate

- The Intruder | Odissi dance inside 18th century painting | Mahina Khanum
A love story told with 2000-year-old Indian Odissi dance, 18th century Indian painting and 21st century animation technology.

TAALAM: Column by Leela Venkataraman

- Samabhavana churns out myriad starry thoughts on new directions in Indian dance
Curated with great care by Sudarshan Chakravorty and Paramita Saha of Sapphire Dance Creations of Kolkata, the two day SAMABHAVANA effort on new directions in Indian dance, churned out varied thinking on the dancing body.

- Malavika's new creative spurt
Dancing with greater energy than ever, Malavika Sarukkai seems to be going through a fresh spurt of creativity, breathing new life into her Bharatanatyam art.

- Dancing to poetry of liberated women saint poets
An evening of dance centred round the poetry of women bhakti poets Andal and Meera, hailing from the South and North of India respectively, was in keeping with the mood of International Women's Day celebrated in early March.

THE EASTERN EYE: Column by Dr.Utpal K Banerjee

- Sensibilities of a Modern Man
What is Indian dance and what could be its new directions? Is there anything ever new, when it comes to the human body in terms of its form and what it should seek to portray in terms of content? These and other provocative questions were pointedly raised in Samabhavana...

- Agony and Atonement: 8th Theatre Olympics, Part I
After two decades of conducting annually the Bharat Rang Mahotsav with great aplomb since 1999, National School of Drama unfurled the biggest venture of its existence: the 8th Theatre Olympics from February 17 to April 8 this year.

- Real and the Surreal: 8th Theatre Olympics, Part II
Two endearing take-offs on Shakespeare, one delightful spoof on Jules Verne and one hard core realisation of African reality constituted a substantive spread of the ongoing 8th Theatre Olympics panorama.


- Magic of Khajuraho and classical Indian dances: Part 1
Festival of Festivals, Khajuraho Dance Festival in its 44th year has won critical acclaim and popularity with presenting in the early years legendary dancers who built up the festival as unique one. It has been a dream for every dancer to perform here once in their lifetime.

- Magic of Khajuraho and classical Indian dances: Part 2
The 44th edition of Khajuraho Dance Festival ended with a disappointing note with selection of 14 Kathak dancers of questionable quality. It was tiring to see so many Kathak dancers, such an overdose.

- Samabhavana: Celebrating New Directions in Indian Dance
Sapphire Creations Dance Company commemorated its 25th year by organizing a dance conference on 3rd and 4th March at ICCR Kolkata under four segments - Provocations, Explorations, Transformations and Negotiations.

- Shimla Diary: 1st edition of Classical Dance Festival
The interesting story about how the Gaiety Theatre was built includes the fact that a plan was invited for its building. A remarkable piece of Victorian theatre architecture, it has been compared to London's Royal Albert Hall, as a miniature version of it.

- Bhaanaka: Reconstruction of Uparupaka
During the 8th Olympic Theatre Festival organized by the National School of Drama and Ministry of Culture, Piyal Bhattacharya from Kolkata presented Bhaanaka at LTG theatre, Delhi, on 17th March, his recreation of uparupaka Bhaanaka.



Meet the artistes SANCHARI.. More on the artsArticles

April 1 & 8 Princeton, NJ
Sangam Festival presents NATYA SHASTRA LECTURE SERIES by Bharatanatyam exponent Bala Devi Chandrashekar, from 5pm to 8pm

April 1 & 15, Gandhinagar, Gujarat
Performances by Suprava Mishra and students of Aum Arts Dance Acdemy.
- 1st April: For Odisha Day celebration, Odissi dance Ganesh Tandav, Navras and Rangbati Sambalpuri Dance at Town Hall, Gandhinagar, 6.30pm
- 15th April: International seminar on epic Mahabharatha at ACLSC INTERNATIONAL SEMINAR ON EPIC TRADITION IN WORLD LITERATURE April 15-16. Odissi dance on Mahabharatha and presentation of paper.
INFLIBNET Centre Infocity, Gandhinagar, 7pm

April 1 - 29, Nagpur, Mumbai, Pune
Schedule for Uma Dogra and disciples.
-1st April: Uma Dogra with Suhani Singh and Diksha Rawat, perform at ATULYA BHARAT DANCE FESTIVAL organised by SCZCC, Nagpur
- 13th April: BEYOND, a new choreography by Uma Dogra, with Akhila Nair and Ayan Banerjee at MUDRA FESTIVAL, NCPA, Mumbai
-14th April: Kathak solo by Uma Dogra in PRAYAAG DANCE FESTIVAL, presenting RADHA of Jayadeva's Geet Govind and Radha in Thumri, Mumbai
-29th April: Uma Dogra's solo productions MANTHARA and KAIKEYI for Kathak Mahotsav, Pune, organised by Kathak Kendra, New Delhi

April 2 & 3, New Delhi
Kri Foundation presents MADHAVI DANCE FESTIVAL featuring works of two choreographers - NAAMA MHAANE by Vaibhav Arekar & ensemble on April 2, and VIVARTANA by Rama Vaidyanathan & ensemble on April 3.
At: Stein auditorium, Habitat Centre, 7pm.

April 2 & 3, Singapore
Guru Gajendra Panda and Sasmita Pal conduct ODISSI DANCE WORKSHOP at Compass Heights Studio for Context & Continuity (organized by Debaprasad Nrutya Dhara Singapore), 10am to 4pm.

April 7, New Delhi
DRISHTIKON HOME-STUDIO BAITHAK: SEASON III, Kathak solo by Sunny Shishodiya, contemporary duet by Deepak Kurki Shivaswamy & Manju Sharma
Venue: Drishtikon Dance Foundation Studio, Sainik Farms, 6pm

April 7 & 8, Secunderabad
Sri Lakshmi Narasimha Jayanti Bhagavata Mela Natya Nataka Sangam (Melattur S Natarajan's troupe) will be performing Bhagavata Mela Natakams, SRI KRISHNA JANANAM-KAMSA VADHAM and SEETHA PARINAYAM on 7th & 8th Apr, respectively under the auspices of Sri Rama Navami Cultural Festival.
At: Keyes High School, 6:30pm

April 8, San Jose, CA
Abhinaya Dance Company presents SPRING RECITAL featuring works of renowned Carnatic music composers in Bharatanatyam.
At: Mexican Heritage Plaza & School of Arts and Culture, 4pm

April 10, Ann Arbor, MI
Centre for World Performance Studies presents NAYIKAS, classical Indian heroines in Odissi (Shreyasi Dey) and Mohiniattam (Priyadarshini Ghosh), with demo, performance followed by Q & A.
At: East Quad Keene Theatre, 701 E University Ave, 7.30pm to 8.30pm

April 19, NYC
CUNY Dance Initiative Showing - Jiva Dance will be presenting a rough work-in-progress showing at Queens College as part of their CDI residency. Their work will focus on an excerpt of their upcoming production - working title THE FOUR HORSEMEN.
At: Studio 101A Rathaus Hall, Queens College, 3:10 - 4:25pm

April 20, Bangalore
Rasika Kiran, daughter and disciple of Gurus Kiran Subramanyam and Sandhya Kiran, performs for the EFCEP series organised by ICCR and Department of Kannada and Culture.
At: Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan, Race Course Road, 6.30pm.

April 22, Mumbai
Aditi Mangaldas presents WIDENING CIRCLES for Mudra Dance Festival.
Venue: Tata Theatre, NCPA, 6.30pm

April 22, Downer's Grove, IL
Natya's RASA EXPERIENCE: DANCE CONNECTIONS fundraiser will bring Natya families, alumni and the broader community together to celebrate and support Natya's goals. Debut of the film 'Hema: The Dance of Life' (40 years in the making!), a mini parents dance class, win projects created by Natya students about 'What Dance Means to Me,' presentation of the first Natya Service Award, and dance.
At: Ashyana Banquets, 1620, 75th St, Downers Grove, 11am - 2pm

April 24, Bangalore
Nadam presents a Bharatanatyam performance by Bragha Bessell.
Venue: ADA Rangamandira, JC Road, 6.30pm.

April 27, Ahmedabad
Rasadhwani presents ROMANCING THE LORD, a Bharatanatyam performance by Shivangee Vikram based on pada-s/poetries of various Indian languages.
Poetic abhinaya by Dr. Uma Anantani on rendition of poetry by Dr.Ranjana Harish.
Poetry appreciation by Neha Krishna Kumar.
Venue: Ouroboros - Art Hub, Blackbox Theatre, Sheetalvarsha complex, Shivranjani Cross Roads, Satellite, 8.30pm

April 28, Chicago, IL
STOMPING GROUNDS will feature the Mexican Folk Dance Company of Chicago alongside Natya Dance Theatre and Trinity Irish Dance Company in a narrated performance and Q&A with the audience. Stomping Grounds events are free and open to the public. It is a free two-month citywide celebration of authentic, rhythmic dance companies from a variety of world cultures.
At: National Museum of Mexican Art, 1852 W 19th St, 7.30pm

April 28, Ahmedabad
Rasadhwani performers led by Shivangee Vikram perform Bharatanatyam as a part of the World Dance Day Celebrations 2018 of JG College of Performing Arts.
Venue: JG Auditorium, JG Campus, Gulab Tower Road, Off Sola Road, 8pm

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