Khayyam's Rubaiyat: Echoes in dance

Maitra, Raka and Sasitharan, T and Zai, Kunning and Wileo, Alberta and Kashyap, Gitanjali (2013) Khayyam's Rubaiyat: Echoes in dance. [Production]

Item Type: Production
Title: Khayyam's Rubaiyat: Echoes in dance
Synopsis:

Created and choreographed by Raka Maitra with 13 dancers, Khayyam's Rubaiyat: Echoes in Dance draws from Edward Fitzgerald's famous 19th Century translation of the Persian quatrains attributed to Omar Khayyam.* With three Indian musicians playing live, and specially designed costumes also coming from India. Drawing mainly on students from her own dance school Chowk: A Centre for Dance, Raka Maitra trained her performers for twelve months under a special NAC grant to produce this work.
Using techniques of Odissi, Chhau, Kalaripayattu and contemporary vocabularies drawn from Indian movement traditions, the dancers manifest many reflections of the poetry through the body. Music - influenced by Sufism and inflected by Hindustani classicism - carries the journey of the dancer and the experience of the spectator. This is a yearning: a combination of movement, dance, music and the stirring imagination of a Persian mathematician who desired to be a poet.
(Synopsis and Theme) More than ten centuries ago, an ageing astronomer and mathematician, Omar Khayyam, turned his existential anguish into poetry and composed over 1,000 four-line verses as a serenade to life and a lament on eternity. Raka drew on 16 of the 75 quatrains in Fitzgerald’s illustrated first edition (1859) – see Process Notes for Raka Maitra’s Khayyam's Rubaiyat: Echoes in Dance Performance Text.
Khayyam's The Rubaiyat traverses the murky waters between life and afterlife, God and godlessness, doubt and mysticism, with the nimble feet of both the Sufi and the heretic. Its imagery summons the crimson of youth and the silver of cold moonlight, as if the poet was intoxicated by the pleasure of being alive, even as passing moments steal away the time that remains to enjoy it.
Fitzgerald’s sensitive treatment of the material creates a mood of intense sensuality, rapture and urgency. In this production, the dancers' bodies converse with the sea of ideas that Khayyam sets adrift in his work.
*Omar Khayyam (1048–1131) was a Persian poet, mathematician and astronomer. From the Persian word rubai, for a double couplet, Fitzgerald chose 75 from a thousand extant Khayyam quantrains for his first edition (1859) on which this work is based; the second edition (1868) increased to 110, but the next three editions, the 5th being the most famous (1889), settled on 101 quartains. FitzGerald's version, using an AABA rhyming scheme, is a high point of 19th century English Literature and has been greatly influential.
CAST
Dancer....................... Aparna Nambiar
Dancer ....................... Jayasri Narayanan
Dancer ....................... Pooja Parameswaran
Dancer ........................ Raka Maitra
Dancer ........................ Rithika Pahwa
Dancer ......................... Saranya Sundararajan
Dancer .......................... Shruthi Bhathina
Dancer............................ Srilakshmi Raghunathan

PRODUCTION
Choreographer ................... Raka Maitra
Dramaturgy ........................ T. Sasitharan
Stage Design ...................... Zai Kuning
Lighting Design .................. Alberta Wileo
Costumes ........................... Gitanjali Kashyap
Narrator .............................. Georgia Simone
Music (Vocals) ...................... Saroj Mohanty
Music (Sitar) ........................... Subrata De
Music (Tabla)........................... Nawaz Mirajkar

Subjects: Performing Arts - Theatre
Divisions: Work in process
Depositing User: Ms Ashalatha Krishnan
Date Deposited: 25 Oct 2013 06:15
Last Modified: 22 Dec 2014 08:12
URI: http://drlib.lasalle.edu.sg/id/eprint/210