Wisdom in steps

Stage act: The team behind the dance performance Buddha— The Why Within
Ever wondered about Buddha’s wisdom combined with elements of dance? If not, Buddha—The Why Within, an Indo-French dance performance will act as a guiding light. Manpriya Singh: Centuries-old institutions could do with a whiff of innovation, as much as current troubled times with a bit of old-world wisdom. Alliance Française de Chandigarh in association with CITCO presents Buddha— The Why Within, an Indo-French dance performance, bringing in the elements of Kathak and tap dance. “This performance is not about the life of Buddha, but about his philosophy — of peace, sacrifice and renunciation,” Mitul Sengupta, from Kolkata-based Kathak and Western contemporary dance company gets started about the collaboration. The presentation is about the most pragmatic yet unsung characters from the Mahabharata—Ulupi, Barbareek and Aravan, who dwell on love and sacrifice as they search for the eternal truth as embodied by Buddha. Current context: But underlying the blend of two influences is an attempt to find a current context to ancient tradition, while in the process make it connect with youngsters. “In the production, we’ve tried infusing Kathak with elements of contemporary dance,” shares the artistic director Ronnie Shambik Ghose. “The idea was to make it more appealing to youngsters while at the same time keep the essence of Kathak alive.” A combination of Western classical music, Buddhist chants and Indian classical music reflect a sense of deep turbulence as also a reflective peace. “I will be performing the traditional art with a different kind of body language,” adds Mitul Sengupta, having already taken the performance to cities in India and currently on a five-city tour. The 30 minutes of Buddha will be followed by yet another 30 minutes of excerpts from Swan Lake. “We have also performed at the Royal Danish Theatre,” shares the other member. Tough times: Amidst all the talk of stage props and the impending performance in the evening, a passing mention of the situation back home and “It is very difficult, as these are troubled times but you have to be a professional. Can’t leave the tour mid-way,” shares Yorma Loringett, having been with the group since 2011 and all set to regale the audience with his exhilarating tap. Chips in Viviana Salvo, joining in the group only four days before the tour started, “Yes we were here while the attacks happened. It was unfortunate...but we’ll cope. As for India, I like this culture and the meaning it has to lend.” Cheers to human resilience.manpriya@tribunemail.com, Source: Article

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