Equilibrium

Equilibrium is a double bill of Bharatanatyam-Kathak duets between Nina Rajarani and Abhay Shankar Mishra.

The first part has live music composed by Pushkala Gopal and performed by 5 musicians from India.  The second part has a specially commissioned recorded score by Shankar Mahadevan of Bollywood fame along with percussion maestro A Sivamani.  The choreography is overseen by Mavin Khoo.

Equilibrium in a person is achieved when a balance is struck between one’s hidden inner self (Antarang) and one’s conscious outward projection (Bahirang)

Antarang is 45 minutes long and is performed by two dancers, five musicians and an actor. This piece looks at the age old concept that Shiva and Shakti are the universal representatives of man and woman who are believed to be two halves of a whole, therefore need to be in equilibrium to promote harmony.  The concept of vata, pitta and kapha in Ayurveda is addressed as the reason for the rise of emotions, both negative and positive. Traditional Sanskrit and regional Indian text as well as modern English poetry by Gopi Warrier are incorporated in the piece.

Bahirang is 20 minutes long and is performed by two dancers to a recorded score created specially for the company by the world-renowned Shankar Mahadevan.  This piece abstracts a dancer’s dilemma of placing him/herself in a bracket of being either a traditionalist or a contemporary dancer.  In this piece, dancers deeply rooted in traditional technique use the opportunity given by freedom to explore their dance form to give it new shape.  Change is seen here as a transitional process, not finality.  The concept of layering is used in both the music and dance, and the lighting design acts as the stimulus for the choreography.  Confined light projection will define the restraints and the boundaries of the traditionalist, and lighting of changing form will represent the dancer’s freedom to explore and take new risks.

Collaborators:
Nina Rajarani – Dancer and Choreographer
Abhay Shankar Mishra – Dancer and Choreographer
Michael Mannion – Lighting Designer
Belinda Ackermann - Costume Designer
Pushkala Gopal – Music Composer (live piece)
Shankar Mahadevan – Music Composer (recorded piece)
A Sivamani – Music Composer (recorded piece) 
Mavin Khoo – Choreographic Consultant

2004 Tour Venues:

India:
Music Academy, Chennai
Sri Karthika Thirunal Auditorium, Trivandrum
Nayana Auditorium, Bangalore
Habitat Center, New Delhi
Tata Auditorium, NCPA, Mumbai

UK:
The Lowry, Manchester
Colchester Arts Centre, Essex
Spilsby Theatre, Lincolnshire
Old Town Hall, Hemel Hempstead
Queen’s Theatre, Hornchurch
Alhambra Theatre, Bradford
Purcell Room, RFH, London
21 South Street Arts Centre, Reading
Norden Farm Arts Centre, Maidenhead
The Maltings Arts Centre, St Albans
Harrow Arts Centre, Middlesex
Adam Smith Theatre, Kirkcaldy
Middlesbrough Theatre
Paisley Arts Centre
Lemon Tree, Aberdeen
Chipping Norton Theatre

Press Quotes:
“She has mastered the art of presentation of classical dance to the west, keeping the spiritual essence of the Indian culture intact” (Asian Leader, March 2004)

 “Rajarani and Mishra are able dancers she especially so, with a gentle expression and lovely arms. She is also an accomplished mime, with talkative eyes and a listening head.” (the Evening Standard, March 2004)

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