Available for on-demand streaming April 24 until June 30. Once you rent the presentation on Vimeo,  you will have unlimited on demand access for 72 hours. Closed captioning provided.

Our annual Dancing the Gods festival of Indian Dance celebrates its 11th year, again in a virtual presentation and featuring two of India’s leading dancers. Each program begins with a slide presentation by Rajika Puri, festival curator and acclaimed danced storyteller.

Link to Program One: Kasi Aysola (Kuchipudi)

Program Two of our annual Dancing the Gods festival features “Uncharted Seas”, a group Kathak presentation performed by Aditi Mangaldas Dance Company accompanied by live music, and choreographed by Aditi Mangaldas.

Aditi Mangaldas is a leading dancer and choreographer in the classical Indian dance form of Kathak. With extensive training under the leading gurus of kathak, Shrimati Kumudini Lakhia and Pandit Birju Maharaj, Aditi is today recognized for her artistry, technique, eloquence and characteristic energy that mark every performance. Besides dancing and choreographing classical productions, both solo and group, she has broken new ground by using her knowledge and experience of Kathak as a springboard to evolve a contemporary dance vocabulary, infused with the spirit of the classical.

“We look for fixed points, but there are none, either in ourselves or outside in the universe. To live without these fixed points is our challenge.” J. Krishnamurti

Standing alone, looking out at the distant stars, have we not wondered what is it all about? What lies beyond the realms of the known? What lies beyond what our mind can perceive? What lies hidden in the deep recesses of our heart? Is this search external, on paths that have been laid down through centuries? Is the search internal, again through paths that are known, tried and tested? Is this search still, without any movement?

In the words of David Bohm, ‘The field of the finite is all that we can see, hear, touch, remember and describe. This field is basically that which is manifest or tangible. The essential quality of the infinite, by contrast, is its subtlety, its intangibility.’ The search for the intangible, may we call it God, truth, beauty, love or freedom, is the essence of “Uncharted Seas”. Though I have separated the pieces, it is actually the entire production viewed in it’s entirety that tries to capture the essence of ‘SEARCH’. So each piece may or may not refer to all our queries. Some attempt to transform poetry into images or emotions. Others use abstractions of movement, light, space, rhythm, ambience to evoke images asking the same questions. – Aditi Mangaldas

More about Aditi Mangaldas Dance Company – Drishtikon Dance Foundation

About Festival Curator and Presenter Rajika Puri

Rajika Puri performed internationally in solo recitals of Bharatanatyam and Odissi for several years, before she was launched into western theatre by Julie Taymor in Lincoln Center Theater’s “The Transposed Heads”. The success of that role encouraged her to develop a form of danced storytelling she calls ‘Sutradhari Natyam’ in which she intersperses an English narration with excerpts from dances, spoken rhythms and chants as well as songs in Indian languages. In her full-length work: ‘Eleni of Sparta’ or ‘Helen of Troy’, she even sings in ancient Greek. Rajika has performed all over Latin America, Europe, Malaysia, the US and India; in New York, at the Asia Society and Ailey Theatres.

Watch the trailer for “Uncharted Seas” and Festival Curator Rajika Puri’s presentation “Storytelling in India”

Presentation music courtesy of Composer, Singer: Mame Khan, Song title: “Lolee”, from the Album: Desert Sessions  www.mamekhan.com