Kathak to contemporary

Jan 20, 2013, 08:23 IST | Rinky Kumar

A two-day Indian contemporary and folk dance festival at the Nehru Centre, offers a bonanza for Mumbaiites this week

Students, dance aficionados and cultural patrons in Mumbai have reason to cheer. Come Tuesday and they will get a once-in-a-blue-moon opportunity to witness some of India’s rich treasure trove of dance forms such as Odissi, Kathak, Lavni and others at Nritya Lavanya.

The two-day programme on classical, folk and contemporary dance is being held at the Nehru Centre from January 22-23. Organised by the cultural wing of the centre, the event will feature performances by award-winning danseuse Jhelum Paranjpe, Lavni performances by Aarti Kale Nagarkar and her group from Ahmednagar, Surekha Punekar and her group from Pune and Manisha Sathe from Pune who will perform Kathak and a form of Japanese dance.

Jhelum Paranjpe

Jayshree Maitrani, one of the organisers of the event, says, “Every month, our cultural wing organises programmes dedicated to varied genres like dance, theatre etc. This month, we decided to conduct Nritya Lavanya. Through this event, we want to give an opportunity to everyone to witness the varied classical as well as folk dance forms prevalent in India. Since Maharashtra is known for its vibrant Lavni dance, we have dedicated two days to it. We have also invited danseuses from Ahmednagar and Pune who perform authentic Lavni.”

Aarti Kale Nagarkar

On the first day while Paranjpe will perform Shiv, a performance dedicated to Lord Shiva along with her troupe Smitalaya, Nagarkar will perform popular Lavni numbers such as Sneh tumhi kela, Kheltana rang bai, Vichar kai aahe tumcha and Saajna jhadli tumhavar preeti. On the second day Sathe’s students will perform a fusion of Kathak and Japanese dance on the tunes of French music. Punekar will give the finale performance along with her troupe on the tunes of popular Lavni songs like Ya raoji, Pahuniya chandra vadan and Piklya panachya det ki ho hirva.

Talking about her performance that she has especially conceptualised for Nritya Lavanya, Paranjpe says, “The theme of our performance is Shiva. It traverses from traditional to modern dance form. The piece starts off by hailing Shankara as the Lord of lords, followed by the significance of his adishakti or female counterparts — Parvati, Gauri or Uma and finally the Panchamahabhooti or the five elements in the universe.” 

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