Magic of mythology comes alive on stage

Festival of ballet

A treat awaits ballet lovers over the weekend, courtesy Shriram Bharatiya Kala Kendra (SBKK) which will present its 12th edition of ‘Festival of Ballets’. Produced and directed by Shobha Deepak Singh, the event brings the best of all dance forms from ballet on goddess Durga to Meera Bai, and more.

Well-loved characters from ancient epics such as Mahabharata, like Meera, Karna, Durga, Kaalchakra and Kumar Sambhava will come alive on stage once more, for the viewing pleasure of Delhizens.

According to Singh, “These characters are in a resp­lendent avatar and showca­-ses the finest of choreography, costumes and music through scripts that have endeared and endured through generations.”

The show will be staged on different days, respectively May 8, 9, 12, 15 and 16, 7 pm, at Kamani Auditorium; Cope­r­nicus Marg. Free passes are available at the Kala Kendra.

The ballets from the Kendra are popular for their content, distinct costumes and classic choreography. Singh tells Metrolife: “The Festival of Ballets is to understand the magic of mythology re-born.” All the performances have been choreographed by Shashidharan Nair.

Following the same trajectory as previous years’ performances, on the first day the city will witness, Meera, whose glory lies in her ability to articulate through poetry the turbulence that transpired in her life. “Her life seems to be a metaphor for most women, where centuries later, Meera’s name lives on. Wherever Meera went, she spread the message of liberation and urged an inner awakening, through the effervescence of her poetry,” says Singh.

On May 9, Karna takes centre stage, a strong character from the epic Mahabharata, where his circumstances remained consistently hostile. Karna’s life and times were frozen in their entirety and his misfortunes into a perpetual predicament. “This ballet is dedicated to all the Karnas, who are denied their rightful place in the social milieu. Karna’s life was repetitively unfair, eliciting sympathy. His life in the epic is resplendent with magnificent misadventures and acts of valour,” says Singh. Late Guru Krishna Chandra Naik had previously choreographed this piece.

On May 12, ‘Shree Durga’, resonates in all its glory. Even in today’s context, where one routinely reads about the atrocities perpetrated on women, one realises that the gods too had also become victims and had invoked Shakti the feminine power. “To vanquish demons in society, this demonstrates that female power conquers over the several mindless demons ofsociety,” says Singh.

Kaalchakra or the ‘supreme light of consciousness’ will be presented on May 15. Kaalchakra begins with the Hiranyagarbh or ‘The Golden Egg’, representative of a state where nothing was and everything is, its physical representation is of one covered with filaments of the five elements – ether, wind, fire, water and earth. Brahman, the soul of the Hiranyagarbh is seeking to manifest itself in the form of the atman, from a state of non-being to that of seeking communion with the body. It perforates through rarefied ether, wind, fire and water finally descending upon the placid earth and entering the human body, explains Singh.

Last but not the least, the grand finale on Saturday, May 16 will presented by Kumar Sambhava. The dance-drama follows the endearing story of the demon Tarak, who enjoyed sacred protection in the form of a boon of invincibility, from Lord Brahma, of which he took blatant advantage and wreaked havoc on earth. Karthikeya, son of Shiva lead the ferocious battle with Tarak. He mustered all his powers and released a deadly bolt against Tarak. The darkness lifted from the heavens and earth and the gods and humans rejoiced. Kamdeva’s death and his wife Rati’s lamentation offer the poignant and sad reality of a tale, where good and evil coexist.  

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