Creative expressions

Attakkalari Centre for Movement Arts  

Attakkalari Center for Movement Arts presented ‘Sanchaari' in Kochi recently; a programme that was intellectually stimulating and aesthetically appealing. The group, which often travels to Europe and other countries for various performances, presents dance pieces that are choreographed to perfection and finesse, keeping in mind the aesthetics of Westerners.

The programme in Kochi began with ‘Chronotopia,' which was inspired by ‘Chilapathikaram.' The dance piece canvassed the human mind's tribulations through childhood, marriage, rural, urban and mythical contexts using the story of Kannaki as a metaphor. The piece, a blend of Russian ballet, Manipuri and a variety of Latin dances, had allusions to wars in the Middle East and consumerism.

Vigorous movements

Childhood was projected as a memory zone and the mirth in the relationships of siblings and friends were brought alive. The final episode had the paradoxes of fertility and barrenness, violence and peace. All these were performed with broad leaps and jumps, entwining bodies and flowing movements. Despite all the vigour in the movements, the faces of the dancers were almost expressionless for most of the pieces.

“Indian classical dance tradition often has a story telling format that uses the face, which stands separate from the body. In contemporary dances, emotions primarily stem from the spine and abstract expressionism is better this way. Hence, facial expressions are minimal in our dance,” explains Jayachandran Palazhi, director of the group.

‘Swatma' traced the journey of the soul from the birth of inner consciousness to awareness. Music with cymbals and mid-tempo music added to the artistry of the piece. ‘Reflections' took movements and postures from temple sculptures and Bharatanatyam. Multiplicity of spaces in dance were used to explain multi-cultural coexistence of cultures in Indian cities. A lot of multi-media explorations, which are inherent to these productions, were sacrificed due to stage and space constraints.

Jayachandran Palazhi made a brief appearance in a choreographic piece titled ‘Transavataar.' The theme of multiple personality was explored. A video projection of Jayachandran's face in various states combines with several other faces in a balance that was most striking. Pairs of male and female dancers portrayed the forces of violence, aggression and peace.

Steps from Kalaripayattu were predominantly used for this piece. There were points when the music was almost minimal and sombre, and movements were executed without beats accompanying them. Denny Paul, Hemabharati Palani and Ajeesh Balakrishnan were a few dancers who stood out.

The piece that was received the best by the audience was ‘Cinemascope.' The dance piece used African drum beats and was highly rhythmic and vibrant.

The programme sponsored by Muthoot Group was staged in Kerala Fine Arts Society.

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Printable version | Jan 29, 2022 1:58:17 PM |

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