Theatrics with a difference

Dressed in formal attire, a girl with short hair looked smart. But the strikingly absurd feature in her appearance was a switch- board that hung around her neck!

As she moved slyly on the stage, switching on and off the switchboard, the audience enjoyed watching the performance titled ‘according to official sources...’ by Mirra. This conceptual piece was presented as a part of ‘All Warmed Up’ an initiative of Gati Dance Forum.

The 6th edition of their project --- Gati Summer Dance Residency, showcased six new works by six emerging choreographers at Goethe-Institut/Max Mueller Bhavan recently.

While the dance piece choreographed by Mirra was based on the way the marketing and publicity mechanisms control an individual’s mind and behaviour, the work titled ‘110048, M81’ by Avantika Bahl delved into the idea of ‘home’. The latter uses elements of tape and shoe lace to symbolise the cramped living spaces in big cities, where individuals from smaller cities search for an abode.

Within a span of an hour and a half, the audience got to explore themes ranging from non-verbal communication and relationships to war aftermath and internal emotional noise. Though timed between 10 to 15 minutes, the performances were impactful. To a viewer, it was a platter of creativity served in delicious portions with distinct characteristics.

For some, the performance ‘looking within without’ by Rachnika Goyal was quite far-fetched while the piece choreographed by Rajan Rathore (titled ‘parallel’) was simple and appreciable.

Goyal’s work actually tried to explore the conflict of the noise within and silence outside and vice versa. Standing under a spotlight, the dancer endeavoured to express an abundance of emotions.

On the contrary, Rathore made maximum use of the performance area along with his partner Sasha Shetty, to present the complicated man-woman relationship in an uncomplicated style.


Also noteworthy were the balancing acts performed by Rathore which were
quite exemplary!

In terms of expressions the acts by Riya Mandal (unfold@ 70bpm) and Venuri Perera (traitriot) were exceptional. Mandal’s facial expressions impressed the audience while Perera’s forceful body movements and theatrics floored all.

The Sri Lankan choreographer, Perera experimented and amalgamated theatrics and dance to give goosebumps to the viewers with his expertise.In addition to each performance, there was a play of shadows that was created with beautiful lights.

While Perera commanded the play of lights, Behl seems to be looking for space even within shadows. The most engaging, however, was Mirra’s performance which seduces, arouses laughter, demands attention and compels viewers to introspect their actions when they fall for advertisements and news reports.      

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