Agent of provocation

Updated: Dec 04, 2016, 13:46 IST | Aastha Atray Banan

Delhi choreographer Mandeep Raikhy comes to Mumbai with Queen Size, which aims to take on Article 377 with a choreographed conversation


Pic/Sidharth Sarcar

It was during the time that artistes were returning their awards that I realised that my own art form, dance, couldn’t be apolitical. I wanted to create something that was relevant to what was happening in our world,” says Mandeep Raikhy, managing director of Gati dance forum, and the choreographer for the new show, Queen Size. But it was his re-reading of friend and gay activist, filmmaker Nishit Saran’s 12-year-old column on why his bedroom habits should be a point of conversation instead of being swept under the carpet, that became the genesis of this “choreographed response”.

The show, which is around two-and-a-half hours long, is constructed in such a way that dancers open the doors every 10 minutes so that the audience can enter or exit at any point they want. “So, what you perceive depends on what you see. The idea of ‘choice’ is given to the audience as well,” says Raikhy. There are seven fragments, that Raikhy says, look at different dimensions of intimacy. “For example, there is the intimacy between hands and fingers; and another sketch that talks of two conjoined body as one — not as human, but as a life from. It’s about intimacy in an unfamiliar form.”

The show has had a recent run in the capital and the Northeast, and Raikhy says that the gaze that watches it is a complicated and loaded one.

“There are many questions – Where is the narrative? In Imphal, the audience got divided into two halves. One asked — ‘did it have to be so provocative to make a point?’ and some said ‘it made the point because it was provocative.” Let’s watch and decide, shall we?

Where: Venues across the city
When: Dec 9, 10, 11 and 14, 7 pm to 9.30 pm
Entry: Rs 200
Log on to: www.bookmyshow.com

A walk through Mohammed Ali Road's Khau Galli

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