inDANCE Presents World Premiere of The Book of Sandalwood
By A Correspondent
Internationally travelled and critically acclaimed Toronto-based dance company, inDANCE will be presenting the world premiere of The Book of Sandalwood, a novel and lyrical Bharatanatyam performance featuring a cast of twelve dancers and musicians. Commissioned by the Festival of South Asian Arts and Literature (FSALA), this stunning new work by award-winning dance-maker Hari Krishnan will be presented at the Al Green Theatre for one performance only on Saturday, May 16.
Having focused on contemporary dance creations for the last few years, The Book of Sandalwood is artistic director Hari Krishnan’s first Bharatanatyam creation since 2012.
The Book of Sandalwood traverses the lush and diverse landscape of classical, colonial and contemporary South Asian poetry including Kalidasa’s Ritusamhara from the fifth century inSanskrit, as well as Sivakkolundu Desikar’s Sarabhendra Bhupala Kuranvanji in Tamil and Chitrakavi Sivarama Rao’s Tanjavuri Hori Lavani in Marathi, both from the nineteenth century. The performance also features an original contemporary verse by Singapore’s V. Balakrishnan in memory of FSALA’s founding member the late Professor Chelva Kanaganayakam, set to an inventive music score composed by Delhi-based Sudha Raghuraman.
The virtuosic choreography animates the literary fragrance of the poetry, showcasing the sensuous exuberance of both the courtesan (devadasi) repertoire and modern representations of Bharatanatyam.
Choreography: Hari Krishnan. Dancers: Nalin Bisnath, Sreyashi Chakraborti, Shobana Raveendran and Vinod Para.
Nattuvangam (orchestral conductor): Hari Krishnan; Vocal: Susha and Varaki Wijayaraj; Mridangam (south indian percussion): Kajan Pararasasegaram; Tabla (North Indian percussion): Ravi Naimpally; Flute: Ajanthie Madanakaran; Violin: Maiyuran Geeritharan; English Narration/Tanpura: Katherine Duncanson; Music Composition: Sudha Raghuraman, Ponnaiyya, and Chitrakavi Shivram Rao; Textual Composition: Kalidasa, Sivakkoluntu Desikar, and V. Balakrishnan; Research/Translations: Dr. Davesh Soneji; Rehearsal Direction: Nalin Bisnath; Costume/Set/Brochure Design: Rex; Lighting Design: Arun Srinivasan; Stage Management: Tara Mohan.
The evening will also include readings by three world authors: Tololwa Mollel (Canada/Tanzania); Jose Dalisay (Philippines) and Elizabeth Nunez (Trinidad/USA).
The Book of Sandalwood
Presented by the Festival of South Asian Arts and Literature (FSALA)
Choreographed by Hari Krishnan of inDANCE
Saturday, May 16, 2015 at 7PM
Al Green Theatre, Miles Nadal JCC, 750 Spadina Ave., Toronto