NRITYAGRAM DANCE ENSEMBLE

One of the premiere Indian classical dance ensembles performing today, Nrityagram Dance Ensemble has the unprecedented distinction of making The New York Times’ “Best Dance of the Year” list two consecutive years in a row (2015, 2016). More than a dance company, Nrityagram was founded as a village devoted to Odissi dance. The all-female ensemble’s daily life of intensive training and meditation brings to the stage compelling captivating performances that are at once sensual and lyrical.

Running Time: 95 minutes (with a 20 minute Intermission)
Featuring Nrityagram & Chitrasena dancers
Performed with live music

On the heels of their recent tour revival of the international hit Samhara, Surupa Sen will collaborate with Chitrasena Dance Company from Sri Lanka for a new work. The company will be joined by male and female guest dancers from this Kandyan dance troupe along with members from Nrityagram’s Odissi dance ensemble.

VIRTUAL PRESENTATIONS

Streamed from the Nrityagram Dance Village studios, these virtual offerings allow audiences worldwide to engage with a globally renowned Odissi dance company. Hailed by The New York Times as “among the world’s greatest dancers,” these virtual activities give audiences access to the company and their Nrityagram Dance Village like never before.

  • Technology: Zoom or other live streaming platform provided by presenter.

  • Company requires Presenter to provide virtual stage manager to run virtual activities. A tech rehearsal before every event with the virtual stage manager is required. .

  • All activities are adaptable and can be tailored to meet the needs of the presenter.

CURATED ARCHIVAL SERIES (Option to include live chat)

Offering streaming opportunities for curated archival collections that provide a rare chance to watch or rediscover dances from earlier years of the Nrityagram Dance Ensemble, with an introduction by Artistic Director and Choreographer Surupa Sen. This Series is available to Presenters interested in exclusive footage from the Video Vaults of Nrityagram, that has only been viewed live and is not available online.

Option A: Excerpt of dance work with a recorded introduction by Surupa Sen.
Approx running time: 15 minutes total

Option B: Select Excerpts from a show introduced by Surupa Sen
Approx running time: 30 minutes total + 15-20 minute Post Performance Chat with Surupa Sen

Option C: Evening Length show introduced by Surupa Sen
Approx running time 50 minutes total + 15-20 minute Post Performance Chat with Surupa Sen.

Further detail regarding Introductions: Surupa will briefly introduce the Odissi dance form followed by an explanation about the dance the audience is about to see. These introductions, which are a part of all Nrityagram performances, offer a window to the viewer to enable them to find and understand the nuances and meanings of a stylized classical dance.

VIRTUAL TOUR: NRITYAGRAM DANCE VILLAGE

Go on a virtual tour of the Nrityagram Dance Village. Located outside of Bangalore, this lush ten-acre dance village founded by Protima Bedi in 1990 has been home to the internationally renowned Nrityagram Dance Ensemble for almost 30 years. A rare opportunity to visit the grounds of this exemplary company that have been visited by notable personalities including Mikhail Baryshnikov, Mark Morris and Mick Jagger. Led by Artistic Director Surupa Sen, the tour may include footage of performance excerpts not available online.

Details:

  • Live Tour option possible, contact Pentacle for details.

  • Approx 50-60 min (40 min multimedia and talk + 10-20 minute Q&A)

SCHOOL MATINEE: DANCE VILLAGE ODYSSEY

The Nrityagram Dance Ensemble transports students on a magical journey through time and space to Eastern India, the birthplace of Odissi – one of the world’s oldest dance forms. Geared specifically for young audiences, company members illustrate the breathtaking beauty of the dance, demonstrating how it reflects the motifs of ancient Odisha temple sculpture as well as the poetry from the deep wellsprings of Oriya music. This engaging lecture demonstration includes audience participation, will introduce students the language of Odissi, from body positions and basic movement to the “Language of Expressional Dance” with hand gestures and facial expressions. Excerpts of Nrityagram’s vast repertory will also be streamed as part of the presentation. A one-of-a-kind cultural exchange, students engage with India’s premiere dance ensemble, culminating in a Q&A session with the dancers. Option to include Chitrasena Dance Company available. Contact Pentacle for details.

Details:

  • Student Audience Grade Range: Grade 4 (ages 9-10 yrs old) to High School (ages 14-18)/span>

  • Approx 50 minutes + 10 minute Q&A

NRITYAGRAM & CHITRASENA: A MEETING OF TWO CULTURES

Join Surupa Sen, Artistic Director of Nrityagram and Heshma Wignaraja, Artistic Director of Chitrasena Dance Company from Sri Lanka, as they discuss their collaboration over the years, beginning with their first work Saṃhāra and their most recent collaboration, Āhuti, bringing Odissi and Kandyan dance forms together.

Details:

  • Excerpts of their collaborative work, Saṃhāra and Āhuti, are featured through the talk.

  • Presenter to provide moderator or may be provided by company.

  • Approx 50-60 min (40 min multimedia and talk + 10-20 minute Q&A)

VIRTUAL WORKSHOPS

MOVEMENT WORKSHOP: INTRODUCTION TO ODISSI DANCE

This introductory class is an opportunity to learn basic abstract movement phrases and the body-training specific to Odissi, as evolved and practiced at Nrityagram.

Details:

  • The company begins with a brief lecture that traces Odissi dance from its origin to how it is practiced today, specifically at Nrityagram.

  • This is followed by a demonstration to illustrate the body training practiced at Nrityagram, to prepare the dancer’s body and prevent injury.

  • The dancers then demonstrate the language of Odissi: body positions and basic movement technique are deconstructed, and the language of expressional dance is explained with hand gestures and facial expressions.

  • To end the demonstration, the technique and language of Odissi dance is brought to life through the performance of an excerpt.

  • Participants then learn Isolated body training techniques used at Nrityagram, and a basic phrase that provides a brief but complete experience of Odissi dance vocabulary.

  • Instructor: Pavithra Reddy

  • Technology : Zoom

  • Running Time: 90 minutes

  • 25 students Max

  • Dress code: Full-length tracks or yoga pants with a comfortable t-shirt. No Shorts or Skirts.

  • LECTURE DEMONSTRATION

    An Introduction to Odissi dance as evolved and practiced at Nrityagram, the lecture – demonstration provides an opportunity for participation and interaction with the dancers and serves as a tool to better understand a performance.

    Details:

    • The company begins with a brief lecture that traces Odissi dance from its origin to how it is practiced today, specifically at Nrityagram.

    • This is followed by a demonstration of the language of Odissi: body positions and basic movement technique are deconstructed, and the language of expressional dance is explained with hand gestures* and facial expressions.
      *This could be participatory, especially for young audiences.

    • And finally, the technique and language of Odissi dance is brought to life through performance of dance pieces – abstract and expressional.

    • The event ends with a Q&A session with the company.

    • Lead By: Dhruvatara Sharma

    • Includes Company members

    • Technology : Zoom

    • Approx 75 minutes + 15 minutes Q&A

Note: For a young group, lecture is reduced and demonstrations / opportunities to participate are increased.

ARTIST TALKS & PANEL DISCUSSIONS

Topics include but are not limited to Classical Indian dance, Odissi and sculpture, the poetry of the Geeta Govinda, The Natyashastra, storytelling through dance, spirituality, Body conditioning and injury prevention, gender studies and religious studies.

Classes, Workshops and Lecture-Demonstrations are presented with live musical accompaniment by Nrityagram’s Music Ensemble.

Introduction to Odissi Dance Class
This introductory class is an opportunity to learn the basic abstract movement phrases and body-training techniques specific to Odissi, as evolved and practiced at Nrityagram. The company begins with a brief lecture that traces Odissi dance from its origins to how it is practiced today, specifically at Nrityagram. This is followed by a demonstration of the language of Odissi: body positions and basic movement techniques are deconstructed, and the language of expressional dance is explained with hand gestures and facial expressions; this could be participatory, especially for young audiences. To end the demonstration, the company brings the technique and language of Odissi dance to life through a performance of a dance piece. Participants are then taught body isolation techniques used at Nrityagram, including information from Abhinaya Darpana and Natya Shastra, which are ancient texts of dance & theatre. The class ends with the teaching of basic phrases that provide a brief but complete experience of the Odissi dance vocabulary. Running time: 90 minutes–2 hours.

Two Day Odissi Workshop
An extended two day workshop is also offered where participants experience more in-depth instruction and create a short paragraph of abstract dance based on the phrases that they have learned. Running time: 90 minutes–2 hours each day

Kandyan Dance Class
This class will give participants the opportunity to learn about Kandyan, an indigenous traditional dance form from Sri Lanka. Its origins date back to over 2500 years, however it is only with the emergence of Chitrasena in the early 30′s and 40′s, that this ancient ritual art form was given a new life adapted for the stage and contemporary audiences. The class will begin with a brief introduction to the history of the Kandyan dance, and how the Chitrasena dance style developed over the past five decades and is being practiced today. The class is designed to deconstruct and decode the abstract Kandyan dance vocabulary. Participants will learn some of the alphabets, basic word constructions, sentence structures and dynamic elements of the dance form like jumps and turns. By the end of the class, participants will be able to construct a longer sentence using the Kandyan movement vocabulary. Running time: 90 minutes

Lecture Demonstration
Based on Odissi Dance from India and Kandyan Dance from Sri Lanka, The Lecture-Demonstration is an Introduction to Odissi Dance as evolved and practiced at Nrityagram & Kandyan Dance as developed and practiced by the Chitrasena Dance School. The presentation will begin with a brief lecture on the unique history and evolution of both dance forms and a demonstration of the unique technical features of both. This is to establish the cultural commonality and differences that influence both dance traditions and how they can come together in one performance space. These technical differences are demonstrated separately through music, rhythms, basic body positions, basic movement vocabulary and nuances such as walks, spins and jumps. This is followed by a demonstration of hand gestures, facial expressions and stylized body language – techniques unique to Odissi, which are used to tell stories. (This could be participatory, especially for young audiences).  Finally the technique and language of Odissi and Kandyan dance is brought to life through presentation of short dance sequences in each forms and a collaborative section from Saṃhāra. The event culminates in a Q&A session with the company. Running time: 75 minutes + 15 minute Q&A

Schooltime Matinee: Dance Village Odyssey
This one-of-a-kind cultural exchange transports students on a journey through time and space to Eastern India, the birthplace of Odissi (one of the world’s oldest classical dance forms) and to the island of Sri Lanka, home to Kandyan dance (an ancient folk dance ritual). Geared for young audiences, company members illustrate the breathtaking beauty of both dance forms, demonstrating how each reflects the culture of their homeland and thus the differences that set each apart. Accompanied by Nrityagram’s live music ensemble and a Kandyan drummer, this engaging show includes audience participation and introduces students to the language of Odissi and Kandyan dance – from body positions and movement vocabulary to nuances such as walks, spins and jumps. Excerpts from Ahuti will also be performed. Running time: 50 minutes/includes Q&A session. Study Guide Available.
Student Audience Grade Range: Grade 4 (ages 9-10 yrs old) – High School (ages 14-18)

Panel Discussions and Artist Talks Topics include but are not limited to: classical Indian dance, Samhāra – a meeting of two cultures, Odissi and sculpture, the poetry of the Geeta Govinda, The Natyashastra, storytelling through dance, spirituality, body conditioning and injury prevention, gender studies, religious studies, temple architecture and dance, and the Nrityagram Dance Village.

Post-show discussions available upon request. No pre-show discussions/talks.

  • The New York Times

  • The Herald

  • The New York Times

  • The New York Times

  • 09.26.2020

    Āhuti

    CFAA Virtual Prakriti Festival

    Broomfield, CO

For more information, please contact:

Sandy Garcia

Sandy Garcia

Director of Booking

212.278.8111 ext. 3425

Nathalie Matychak

Nathalie Matychak

Booking Associate

212.278.8111 ext. 3422