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June 2016
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An entire month away from home, watching many varieties of dance, theatre and performance art forces me to spend more time and space than usual on a densely packed month of May.


There are movies every dancer must watch, books that are a must read and plays/shows that should not be missed. Broadway continues to be the testing ground for so many great and inventive choreographers. The unique demands of creating for "THE GREAT WHITE WAY" (a euphemism for the glittering lights of Broadway in NYC) has spawned some of the most exciting choreography in American modern dance history. Remember Jerome Robbins' stunning dance designs for WEST SIDE STORY in 1957 which was later adapted to film in 1961? The opening scene on the basketball court that morphs seamlessly into a dance "battle" between the two rival teams, SHARKS vs JETS? Ballet, modern dance and sports images fused effortlessly like a champion dribbling the creative ball. On a recent visit to New York, I watched AN AMERICAN IN PARIS. The Gershwin lyrics, "I Got Rhythm", "S Wonderful" had me foot tapping in my seat. It was exhilaration from the moment the curtain rose. The male lead was performed by Garen Scribner, a former dancer at NDT1, the fabulous Netherlands contemporary dance company. The TRIPLE WHAMMY of dancing, singing and acting that Broadway exemplifies, always leaves me awestruck. Imagine 8 shows a week. Non stop. For months without end. I wonder how most Indian dancers would handle even a 6 performance week long "run". Think of what Akram Khan has done for the past 15 years! 3 shows a week without stop. That, according to his manager Farooq Chaudhry! Mind boggling!


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



- EasternEye ACTA Award for dance was given to Birmingham based Kathak dancer Sonia Sabri at Royal Festival Hall, London, on May 22, 2016.

- KALASAGAR AWARDS 2016 in the field of traditional performing art forms were presented when Kalasagar celebrated the 92nd birth anniversary of its founder, Kalamandalam Krishnankutty Poduval, on 28 May 2016 at Kerala Kalamandalam's koothambalam in Shornur. The awardees have been selected through nominations received from art lovers.
KATHAKALI - Vesham/Actor: FACT Padmanabhan; Paattu/Music: Pathiyoor Sankarankutty;
Chenda/Percussion: Sadanam Ramakrishnan; Maddalam/Percussion: Kalanilayam Manoj; Chutty/Make-Up: Kalanilayam Saji
OTTENTHULLAL: Krishnapurarh Murali; CHAKYARKOOTHU: Sangeeth Chakyar; KOODIYATTAM: Dr. Indu G; MOHINIATTAM: Smitha Rajan; BHARATANATYAM: Seetha Sasidharan; KUCHIPUDI: Geetha Padmakumar; THAYAMBAKA: Mattannoor Sanakaran Kutty Marar
PANCHAVADYAM - Thimila: Chottanikkara Nandappan Marar; Maddalam: Kalamandalam Prakash; Edakka: Chennamangalam Unnikrishnan Marar; Thalam: Kummath Nandakumaran; KOMBU: Chengamanad Appu Nair.

- In celebration of Balasaraswati's 98th birthday and commemoration of the contribution to the arts by the Scripps, on May 14, 2016, the BALASARASWATI/SCRIPPS AWARD FOR ARTISTIC EXCELLENCE was conferred on Pandit Birju Maharaj by the Balasaraswati Institute of Performing Arts at the Music Academy, Chennai.
- Writer Naseem Khan (for her historic contribution to the diverse arts, culture and policy agenda in the country), Kathak dancer Nahid Siddiqui, Bharatanatyam guru Pushkala Gopal and Kathak guru Pratap Pawar (who have inspired and imprinted upon generations of students, dancers, teachers, and the very story of South Asian dance in the UK) were felicitated at Navadisha 2016 between May 20-22, 2016 at Birmingham, for their contribution to the arts.

- Saraswathi Education/Cultural and Charitable Trust honoured The Dhananjayans with the title of NATYACHARYA SHIROMANI with a purse and citation on May 1, 2016 in Chennai.

- Shrishti Center of Performing Arts & Institute of Dance Therapy presented the SHRISHTI NATIONAL ACHIEVEMENT AWARD for dance to Manipuri dancer Darshana Javeri, on May 5, 2016 at Bangalore.

- On April 15, 2016 leading social and cultural organisation of Mumbai, People's Arts Centre conferred VISHUKAINEETAM AWARD on Vijay Shanker for his contribution in the field of journalism for more than three decades.


- Thanjavur Rajalakshmi, musician, Bharatanatyam artist and teacher, film actress of yesteryear and director of Sri Gurulaya Academy, passed away on December 25, 2015 in Chennai. She was a recipient of the Kalaimamani award.


- Bala Devi Chandrashekar presents
Karna-Destiny's Child

Jun 11 - Jul 30, 2016
Europe, Singapore, India

- Padmalaya Dance Foundation presents
Youth in Dance 2016

Alliance Francaise de Bangalore, 4.30pm
June 12, 2016 Bangalore


New Dimensions Arts Management & Sampad Arts presented Navadisha 2016
At mac Birmingham, May 20 - 22, 2016
Photos: Vipul Sangoi, Rain Design

Special Kampni Kutcheri that featured Dr. Maya Rao's solo choreographies on her birthday, May 2, 2016 at Bangalore

Astad Deboo performs at Namaste Stockholm on May 21, 2016
Photos: Amit Kumar

TAALAM: column by Leela Venkataraman

- Inclusivity as strong message in Spic Macay's international convention

- Vividh Mat tickles the intellect and regales the senses

- Marking World Dance Day in style

- Award selections cry for transparency

TRENDING by Ashish Mohan Khokar

- Young India!


- Dance conference Navadisha 2016

- A unique workshop by Dr. Anita Ratnam

- A memorable encounter with Yamini Krishnamurti

Not just anyBODY - a health and fitness column

Yoga for healthy knees
- Sumitra Sekaran

Health Recipes 2
- Uma Pushpanathan


Parvati, my rock!
- Geeta Chandran


- Attakkalari presents
Advanced workshop on lighting technology
By Jonathan O'Hear

June 4 & 5, 2016 Bangalore

- Alliance University organizes
Bharatanatyam workshop by
Geeta Chandran

June 4 - 7, 2016 Bangalore

- Manasa presents
Odissi dance workshops
by Guru Sharon Lowen

June 12 - July 25, 2016 Delhi

- Rhythmosaic organizes
Jazz Dance workshop
by Mr. Mohamed Drissi

June 13-15, 2016 Kolkata

- Studio Abhyas organizes
Summer Yoga Retreat

June 15 - 19, 2016
At Kangra, HP


- 7 stunning performances that'll make you want to dance


I have derived my entire existence from dance. I am a balanced person; at harmony with myself and my surroundings because of it. I learnt to appreciate different cultures alongside our very own Indian philosophy. There is no other philosophy wherein the devis and devatas have been made out to be performing artistes. Our goddess of wisdom plays the veena. The creator of our world, Lord Nataraj, is a dancer himself. In so many ways, dance exhorts one to balance out the inner being, which is exactly why it is a form of yog. It is all about harmonising the tandav and the lasya within oneself.
- Shovana Narayan
('The world's a stage' by Anuradha Vellat, The Hindu Friday Review, April 29, 2016)


NRITYA GATHA - Stories of Indian Dance
The 62-page hard-bound color book is a picture book on Indian dance forms for children. The book is informative, and at the same time narrative with attractive illustrations.
Written by Parwati Dutta
Published by Mahagami Arts Research Foundation
Price: Rs.500

Meet the artistes -SANCHARI.. More on the artsArticles

June 2, Bangalore
Attakkalari presents Cie Ben Aim (France) in A DISHEVELLED FOREST, a contemporary dance performance, a poetic journey in the extraordinary mind of a young boy.
At: Ranga Shankara, 7.30pm

June 4 - 24, Mumbai

Schedule of Smitalay & Jhelum Paranjape
- 4th June: Odissi dance performance for Banyan Tree
- 5th June: Odissi solo performance by Jhelum Paranjape during Swaramyee's "Sahasra - Chandra Swara-Nritya-Prabha" Music & Dance Festival set to the bandishes of Dr. Prabha Atre at Ravindra Natya Mandir, 10am.
- 11th June: FARM TO JUNGLE dance performance during the program "Tender Roots" for The Banyan Tree at St. Andrew's Auditorium, Bandra, 10am.
-24th June: Students of Smitalay perform traditional Odissi dance from 7pm onwards at Smitalay, Sane Guruji Arogya Mandir, on SANJUNANI DAY in memory of Sanjukta Panigrahi.

June 5, Tustin, CA
Dance beyond Arangetram - Kanthi Athreya & Visalini Sundaram, disciples of Ramya Harishankar, in LAASYA.
At: Chinmaya Mission Rameswaram, 14451, Franklin Avenue, 6pm

June 10 - 29, Kolkata
The schedule for Ranan.
- June 10: TAK DHIN DHINA DHINTA and BIHANGO - Annual presentation by the students of Brindar - Ranan's Kathak teaching wing
Venue: Birla Academy, 7pm
- June 18: VAICHITRA (excerpts from Ranan's acclaimed dance productions) performed by Vikram Iyengar, Debashree Bhattacharya, Sohini Debnath, Samila Bhattacharya and Rhea Dawn.
Venue: Calcutta Club, 7pm
- June 29: Excerpts from TEN (a Ranan production), four performances through music, dance, movement, text and design. Performed by Amlan Choudhuri, Jayoti Chakroborty, Rhea Dawn, Dana Roy, Debosmita Roy Choudhury, Indudipa Sinha and Anindita Satra.
Venue: Padatik, 7pm

June 11, NYC
Jiva Performing Arts presents VIDYANJALI 2016, the annual offering of dance featuring its students accompanied by a live Carnatic orchestra - Sonali Skandan on nattuvangam, Vignesh Ravichandran on vocals, Bala Skandan on mridangam, Aparna Sundar on violin.
At: JKO Theatre, 120 W 46th Street, 5pm

June 15 & 16, Sibiu, Romania
Aditi Mangaldas/Drishtikon Dance Foundation presents WITHIN on June 15 and TIMELESS on June 16 at the Sibiu International Theatre Festival.
Venue: Union Hall, Sibiu

June 17 & 29, Prague & London
Schedule for Bala Devi Chandrashekar.
- June 17: Lecture and Demonstration on Natyasastra
At: The Embassy of India, Prague, Czech Republic, at 5.30pm
- June 29: Lecture and Demonstration on Abhinaya
At: Nehru Center, 8 South Audley Street, London, 6.30pm

June 18, Bangalore
Natya STEM Dance Kampni presents Mantapa Prabhakara Upadhyay in Ekavyakti Yakshagana as part of the KAMPNI KUTCHERI series. Kampni Kutcheri is an initiative to bring back solo chamber concerts which provides an intimate space for audiences to watch performances and also to get an insight into the performers' artistic journey and process of creation.
Venue: Natya STEM Studio, #37, Bhoomika, 17th Cross, Malleswaram, Bangalore 5600055, 6.30pm


June 18, Stillwater, MN
Deepta Jasthi, disciple of Suchitra Sairam (Kala Vandanam, St. Paul, MN)
Chautaqua Fine Arts Center, 4pm

June 26, Surrey, BC, Canada
Grihalakshmi Soundarapandian, disciple of Jai Govinda (Jai Govinda Dance Academy)
Surrey Arts Centre, 13750 - 88 Avenue, 2pm

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