The apocalypse is here

Jan 20, 2013, 09:08 IST | Phorum Dalal

The NCPA will host a contemporary ballet recital, 'And Then, One Thousand Years of Peace', by French ballet company, Ballet Preljocaj, on January 20 and 21 as part of the Bonjour India festival

Two years ago, Angelin Preljocaj, artistic director of the Ballet Preljocaj, a ballet company in France, first choreographed ‘And Then, One Thousand Years of Peace’ in collaboration with the Bolshoi Theatre, Moscow. Artiste Subodh Gupta designed the scenography for the piece.

A still from And Then, One Thousand Years of Peace

The recital, which toured all over the world, will now perform at the National Centre for Performing Arts (NCPA) today and tomorrow. Inspired by a reading of the Apocalypse of St John, Preljocaj links the ballet to the Russian and French revolution. The two countries have witnessed a lot of turmoil, according to him, and the piece evokes the idea of revealing elements that could be present in our world but are hidden from our eyes.

“Contemporary ballet gives a new shape to the traditional dance form. It is a vision of dance that is more open. The movements are more open, close to the floor and indulge in high jumps. The troupe has 10 male and 10 female dancers,” Preljocaj tells us over the phone from France, adding that the music has been developed by a French DJ and includes electronic music for sharp and fast movements and resorts to the piano tunes for subtler sections.

The performance is part of the cultural promotion between France and India called Bonjour India, Festival of France. “People believe that the French culture is extremely elitist. But it is not so. We conducted collaboration residencies between Indian and French and the result is this festival. The idea is to bridge the two cultures and have more Indian artists visit France. We hope this festival will help improve connections in all fields including economical, diplomatic and of course, cultural,” says Aruna Adiceam, cultural Attache French embassy.

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