Cultural resonance – Manjari Sinha ji covers SPANDAN in her Statesman column

Manjari Sinha
| 02 June, 2016

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The Indian Council for Cultural Relations (ICCR) celebrated Africa Day on 26 May at the Azad Bhavan Auditorium. The theme India-Africa: Bound Together highlighted Africa’s diversity, success, economic potential and cultural resonance with India. The celebration comprised a panel discussion, a week-long exhibition of African costumes, paintings and artefacts, a food festival of Afican cuisine and a cultural programme.

The cultural programme opened with lively songs by the Capital City Minstrels, New Delhi, but the talented troupe from the Kingdom of Lesotho stole the show with the multi-talented African ensemble Likakapa Africa, which literally means The Legends or Crème de la crème. The lively performances by the renowned ensemble were a blend of Famo Music, Afro-Jazz, Hip Hop; that established an instant rapport with the audience. Unable to resist the vibrant rhythm and the contagious zest of the African music and dance, many were seen whistling and dancing in front of the stage.

Likakapa had two major Famo artists Rabots’o le Semanyane and Lebohang Lets’ohla, who led most of the songs backed by Tom Rakoti, the Afro-Jazz artist, and Molibeli Mokake who was both a Hip-Hop performer and a Rapper. The ensemble presented the unique stylistic music and dance, commonly seen in the streets of major towns and villages of Lesotho.

The Spandan-World Dance Evening at the India Habitat Centre the same evening, was the enthusiastic culmination of  a month long Festival of the Performing Arts and an ambitious exhibition of dance photographs, curated by R Srinivasan in the open spaces of the Habitat World on the occasion of the World Dance Day. 

 Celebrating the infinite potential in umpteen varieties of dance forms, Spandan showcased a spectacular melange of dance forms from Indian classical dances like Odissi by Arushi Mudgal, Bharatanatyam by Suhail Bhan and Kathak by Irina from Russia to contemporary dance by Neha Sharma of Sadhya, Jazz by Danceworx, Hip-Hop by the Quake Crew, Flow Art by Eshna Kutty, Tajik dance by Naseeba from Tajikistan and a mesmerising Folk Fusion by Nitisha Nanda from Banjara. The over-packed Stein Auditorium resounded with thunderous applause at the end of this extravaganza of dance, conceived by R Srinivasan of Spandan, created by Indira Ganesh and anchored by their 13-year-old talented daughter Mallika. 

Humkadam-2016 by Rachana Yadav Kathak Studio.

Rachana Yadav Kathak Studio presented Navagraha for their annual event Humkadam-2016, at the Epicentre. Based on the Hindu astrological science that says the nine celestial bodies, or Navagrahas, affect our character with their typical characteristics, when close to us, Rachana most imaginatively conceived and choreographed Navagraha, incorporating the entire repertoire of Kathak  through different groups of students portraying different Grahas, according to the characteristics of these Grahas matching the maturity or the age group of her students.

Opening with Navagraha Stuti, an ode to the nine celestial bodies, the programme started with the youngest age group, the twinkling stars, in “Jagmag deep jale…” with the basic Hastakas and simple Tode Tukde based on Sargam.

Navagraha took off with Brihaspati, the Graha for knowledge and longevity, with Guru Vandana. Venus, that stands for the feminine grace, was presented next, by a young adult batch dressed like delicate “Abhisarika Nayikas” on Shyam Kalyan Bandish “Sundar sej sanvar ke…”, interspersed with  Aamad, Tode, Tukde, Parans and Chakkardars…et al.

Mercury was depicted with Sargams in Raga Yaman; Mangal Graha had Krishna Arjun Samvad with the dancers dressed in the energetic colour red; the Shani or Saturn had the impressive Malkauns Tarana; and Rahu-Ketu portrayed by twin sisters was applauded for their remarkable pirouettes. Surya and Chandra, the climax, were danced respectively by Rachna’s senior-most students. Surya had Pramelu, Paran and the impressive foot-work in the challenging Tala Dhamaar and Chandra was depicted through a Ghazal “Pighal raha hai Chaand…”, as an Abhinaya piece, completing Kathak in its entirety.  Rachana’s imaginative choreography was enhanced with the most appropriate music composed by Samiullah Khan.

Read more at http://www.thestatesman.com/news/voices/cultural-resonance/145968.html#xLvFAqpXhAYqO079.99

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In Media : SPANDAN Festival of Performing Art 2016

SPANDAN festival of performing Arts 2016 found a few mentions in the media and online world. A few more good articles are expected. I shall keep updating this post.

On the day of “Facilitating the Living legends” along with Nartanam, THE HINDU, listed in the happenings dairy

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Distinguished dance critic, Smt Manjari Sinha covered SPANDAN in her weekly column World Dance Day, in STATESMAN on May 12, 2016

Statesman covers SPANDAN Fest of performing Arts

STATESMAN regular online version

STATESMAN epaper version

The May calendar on Narthaki mentions SPANDAN

BuzzInTown lists WORLD DANCE EVENING of MAY 26

Blog of PRIYALASYA has the invites

SPANDAN 2015, the festival of infinity, recordings of the live show on Rainbow FM – 102.6

SPANDAN 2015 got a surprise call from Rainbow FM, to cover the photography exhibition as part of their program – ROAD SHOW. I was delighted to invite RJ Rajesh to the exhibition.

We all were thinking of how would the live program be? I have been part of a few call in programs on various FM Channels, sitting behind the large tech consoles that enables an RJ to manage the whole show, taking the calls, responding to it with the panelist and selecting the songs to play etc.

In this case, Rajesh landed just a couple of minutes before the start and made us wonder whether, at all we are going to have the show. In no time, realized that the RJ at the studio will call on his mobile to do the entire Road Show.

While I took out my mobile to record while the interviews are on, I asked my ‘rath sarathi’, Vishal to take my dictaphone and sit in the car, tune in Rainbow FM and record. Meanwhile Inni flashed his DSLR and recorded the interviews. Here are the versions…

Dictaphone version of the show as heard on the radio…

Podcast Hosting – Listen Audio Files – SPANDAN 2015 on Rainbow FM R…

The Video of the segments of interactions that we recorded on INNI’s DLSR. The order of recordings are, Sreeni, Inni Singh and Prasad Siddhanthi



In the end, I got more ideas about being ready for the next show!

SPANDAN – Previews and Reviews in media of Sreeni’s 10-day World Dance Festival @ IHC

SPANDAN's preview in FIRST CITY

SPANDAN’s preview in FIRST CITY

All previews and reviews being listed here for every ones benefit. My humble gratitude for all facilitators and well wishers who have made it happen. Love. Sreeni

The preview of SPANDAN, celebration of human spirit, in the form of dance appears in FIRST CITY. A 10-day festival of dance with

a. 16 large format dance photographic installations of 9ft X 9ft – all visual treats from Srinivasan Ramakrishnan 10 years of dance photography

Here is the link to my FLICKR photostream of the photographic installations of SPANDAN, that lasted 10 days

SPANDAN, Sreeni's Photo Exhbition

b. An evening of WORLD DANCE on May 3rd with three masters – Sri Avinash Pasricha, renowned dance photographer in a discussion with Eminent dance critic Mrs Leela Venkataraman and Celebrated Bharatanatyam dancer Ms Geeta Chandran

This was followed by five brilliant dancers performing eight forms in the overflowing Stein Auditorium of IHC

– Nikolina Nikoleski (Bharatanatyam and Ballet) Croatia
– Carolina Prada (Chhau and Cumbria) colombia
– Nitisha Nanda (Odissi and Belly Dancing) India
– Quincy Kendell Charles (Kathak) Trinidad and Tobago
– Flamenco Paola Santa Cruz (Flamenco) Peru

and culminated on May 5th with an evening of Drums and Music.

Here is the link to my FLICKR photostream of the evening of WORLD DANCE
http://www.flickr.com/photos/sreenivasan/sets/72157633422288722/with/8719103444/

Just a beginning. Many more to come. Thanks to all dancers, gurus in my life who have showered their blessings and, IHC and Career Launcher (CL Educate) for making it happen.

MORE PREVIEWS HERE

In The Hindu
http://www.thehindu.com/todays-paper/tp-features/tp-metroplus/just-dance/article4658792.ece#

In The Indian Express
http://www.indianexpress.com/news/shake-a-leg/1109303/

On the respected website for dance anchored by Eminent dancer Ms Anita R Ratnam
http://www.narthaki.com/info/fevents.html

In business Standard
http://www.business-standard.com/article/pti-stories/delhi-hosts-week-long-fest-of-global-dance-genres-113043000560_1.html

On habitat world listing
http://www.habitatworld.com/events/show_event.php?id=768&o=3&c=1&m=04&a=28&y=2013&w=1

On Priya Lasya’s blog
http://priyalasya.blogspot.in/2013/04/spandan-world-dance-day-celebrations.html

Also appeared in WHATs HOT of The Times of India

REVIEWS ARE HERE

In The Pioneer, by sri Utpal Banerjee
http://www.dailypioneer.com/vivacity/turning–the-tandava.html

In The Deccan Herald, by Ms Henna Rakheja
http://www.deccanherald.com/content/330730/confluence-dance-forms.html

In THE HINDU, by Mrs Leela Venkataraman
http://www.thehindu.com/features/friday-review/dance/everything-thrown-in-the-mix/article4699240.ece

This whole week/month, I look forward to many more reviews. THE SUNDAY INDIAN of the next week and many many more…

Also SPANDAN appears on NDTV, DD Bharati and DD Rajya Sabha TV. Will post the links if they appear on YOUTUBE ore else where.

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