Art is, at the crux of its existence, dynamic. Think about it. Whether you’re dancing, singing, painting or acting, you’re always in motion, both emotionally and physically. Art festivals are a pure bliss. The contagious artistic euphoria is hard to escape! Audiences, artists, students and alike come together to witness brilliant productions, to collaborate and the best of all, to ideate and create.

I believe art requires merely two prerequisites – space and patronage.

Mumbai’s National Centre Performing Arts (NCPA) offers both in abundance. In its constant endeavor of promoting and preserving a variety of performing and visual arts, NCPA is coming up with the 6th edition of the Contemporary Dance Season, from November 3 to December 22, 2016.

Dhrut by Sumeet Nagdev Dance Arts

The first show of the season, will be a 50 minute presentation ‘Dhrut’. Conceptualized and presented by the ‘Sumeet Nagdev Dance Arts’, ‘Dhrut’ is a metamorphosis of the past, present and future. Incorporating the highly unusual and technical, reverse choreography, the performance highlights, the individual impact of pace, rhythm and motion on movement. What’s more? The company wowed audiences at the, ‘IAAC Erasing Borders Festival of Indian Dance’, in New York on August 15th, 2016. They are here to wow you now!

Kin by Sanjukta Sinha

Next up, ace Kathak dancer Sanjukta Sinha will stage ‘Kin’. Through three different sequences; Illumine, Id and Incede, Sinha will embody the divine, dark and virtuoso personalities of women. Choreographed by the Kathak legend, Padma Bhushan Smt Kumudini Lakhia, along with Aakash Odedera and Mirian Peretz, the audience will get to witness a scintillating performance by Sinha, whose electrifying stage presence is sure to impress.

AadharaChakra by Attakkalari Centre for Movement Arts

The third performance, ‘AadharaChakra – A Dancelogue’ will be presented by dancers from ‘Attakkalari Centre for Movement Arts’. Every detail about this presentation oozes innovation. A hybrid mix of multiple disciplines such as movement, film, light, plastic, multimedia design and sound, are used to realize characters from a variety of Indian locales and period, set in an imagined land. The dancers invite the audiences to participate in a ritualized experience and showcase the essence of domestic life in a Chettinad house, the sacred rituals in a Shiva temple and the flavours of a spice market. Tempting, isn’t it?

Eternal Embrace by Astad Deboo

Astad Deboo, pioneer of modern dance in India will take the stage, to present ‘Eternal Embrace’. The Sangeet Natak Akademi and Padma Shri awardee has fused Kathak and Kathakali to create a dance form that is unique to him. Eternal Embrace is inspired by the poem Maati written by Sufi poet Hazrat Bulleh Shah. Embodying the poem’s central theme, Yukio Tsuji, Japanese composer and performer has composed the original score and will perform with the maestro. Art lovers also have the privilege of participating in a workshop, conducted by Deboo as a part of the season.

Source: Prasanna Photography

Source: Prasanna Photography

Agni by Ashley Lobo

The final performance of the season would be the premier show of ‘Agni’ by Ashley Lobo, founder and artistic director of Navdhara India Dance Theatre and The Danceworx. Exploring the various virtues of fire; destruction, purification, beginnings and endings. The 60 minute presentation will see Lobo’s unique ‘Prana Paint’, technique that will take the audience on an intriguing journey.

Staying true to the idea of constant reinvention and cutting edge innovation, the contemporary dance season is sure to redefine the standards of modern dance in India. Are you ready for some legendary footwork? I know I am!

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