Kolam: Strangers in Indian Paradise

Kolam‘ (2014) is an 11 minutes long dance piece choreographed by Chennai-based contemporary dancer Padmini Chettur commissioned by French choreographer David Rollandas part of the contemporary performance project ‘Stranger in Indian Paradise‘ conceptualized and created by David Rolland Choréographies in association with Basement 21. It shows ten dancers walking on a 400 sq. ft. carpet decorated with a gigantic kolam. The dancers move along the curved lines halted by grids for the steps. As is the baseline of Rolland’s project (a continuation of an earlier project named ‘Stranger in the Paradise’), the dancers walk with the aid of pre-recorded audio guided scores. The stark contrast of the intense calm, concentration and sense of rhythm of the inner dancer’s self strictly following the individual set of instructions (recorded by Chettur and Rolland) through earphones, the apparently crude and chaotic background score (audible to the audience only) composed by Maarten Visser and the lighting designed by Rolland – ranging from a flat white (bright against the vivid purple of the floor) to the robotic lighting towards the end leads this short artistic statement to a dramatic high. 

Music – Maarten Visser

Carpet design – Sumant Jayakrishnan

Photography and Videography – David Rolland, the Alliance Française de Delhi

Venue – Kamani Auditorium, Delhi, India (as part of DanSe DialogueS festival, India, 2014)

Watch excerpts from the performance here or directly from the Youtube page.

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Across, Not Over

Across, Not Over is a collaborative dance production choreographed by Preethi Athreya – contemporary dancer/choreographer based in Chennai, performed by Kathak dancer/choreographer Vikram Iyengar – Artistic Director of Ranan: a performance collective-cum-dance institute based in Kolkata. renov14u Concept/ Choreography – Preethi Athreya

Performer – Vikram Iyengar

Venue – Spaces, Elliot’s Beach, Besant Nagar, Chennai

Music arrangement – Siddhartha Bhattacharyya

Vocal – Sudokhshina Manna Chatterjee

Sound score/ Scenography – Preethi Athreya

Publicity design – Pravin Kannanur

Videography – Vijay Bhoothalingam/ Pravin/ Akhilesh

Co-produced by India Foundation for the Arts.

The full-length production can be viewed here –

The piece celebrates the subtle movements of the genderless ‘Kathak-body’ – much neglected in comparison to the more catchy-therefore-famous trademarks of Kathak – the footwork, the twirl and the ‘Rasa‘, in particular ‘Sringara’. The intricate expressions of the ‘kalai’ (wrist), the circular and linear motions of the upper body announcing the often unrecognized deep-set relationship of the muscles with the solar plexus, the lightweight angular head-movements that generate the mood and soul of Kathak are highlighted in the performance.

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Wall Dancing

Wall Dancing‘ (2012) is a three hours long dance production choreographed by Chennai-based contemporary dancer Padmini Chettur in the year 2012. It explores the relationship of the dancer’s body, alone and collectively, with the surfaces around her. A wall that a dancer leans on can be a real wall, or the floor, or other bodies in the same space, or even the vacuum. The audience is encouraged to move within the space to explore the three-dimensionality of the piece.

wall

MusicMaarten Visser

Video – Vishwanadhan, Nadine Tarbouriech

Performers – Akila, Aarabi, Aditi, Madhushree and Palani

Venue – Focus Art Gallery, TTK Road, Chennai, India

Watch excerpts from the performance here or watch it directly from the playlist:

Copyrights of photo and video – Padmini Chettur

Counter

`Counter’ (2012) by Akila – contemporary dancer based in Chennai – keeps a geometric tension alive throughout the performance between the bodies of the co-dancers Akila and Aditi. Akila in this 15 minutes long piece plays with her movements with a weighty, mechanical grace, lines and angles. The piece develops through a continuous role-reversal of the two bodies.

The following video features a full-length performance of the piece at Alliance Francaise of Madras.

MusicMaarten Visser

Light – M. Natesh

Performers – Akila, Aditi Bheda

This video shows excerpts of the piece performed at Alliance Francaise of Madras – presented by Basement 21.

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Restricted View

`Restricted view‘ (2012) by Anoushka Kurien – contemporary dancer based in Chennai – explores a choice of four tasks she appoints to her body and its surrounding space – flipping, rotating, sliding and re-sizing. It is a 13 minutes long contemporary dance piece.

restricted1

The following video features a full-length performance of the piece at Alliance Francaise of Madras.

Music – Darbuka Siva

Light – M. Natesh

Performer – Anoushka Kurien

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Light Doesn’t Have Arms To Carry Us

`Light doesn’t have arms to carry us‘ is a contemporary dance piece created and performed by Preethi Athreya – contemporary dancer based in Chennai.

The following video is of a full-length performance of the same at Alliance Francaise of Madras.

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Sweet Sorrow

`Sweet sorrow‘ is an hour long contemporary dance piece created and performed by Preethi Athreya – contemporary dancer based in Chennai.

Excerpts from the production performed at Goethe Institute, Kolkata can be seen at

 (The Chair section)

and

(The Floor section)

Copyrights of photo and video – Preethi Athreya