See and Hear: Reimagining Indian Dance

Last month, Asia Society welcomed dancer-choreographers Hari Krishnan, Parul Shah, Kuldeep Singh, and Sheetal Gandhi to present and perform recent works that drew from their experience with, interpretation of, and departure from Indian dance forms and traditions. The pieces addressed a wide range of contemporary issues, from appropriation to gender, identity, and sexuality; inequality; politics and power; perfection and pluralism, and more — through dance.

Experimentation — either within traditional or with wholly contemporary forms — pushes the artists to interpret Indian dance in novel ways. Simultaneously, audience members were able to expand their notions of what constitutes "Indian" dance. Reimagining Indian Dance: Moving Forward was co-curated by Asia Society Director of Global Performing Arts and Cultural Initiatives Rachel Cooper and dancer, choreographer, and storyteller Rajika Puri. Here are some of our favorite snaps from the night and the complete video recording of the performances.

Parul Shah
'enduring silence' (2017), choreographed and performed by Parul Shah. (Ellen Wallop/Asia Society)
Rajika Puri
'Reimagining Indian Dance: Moving Forward' co-curator Rajika Puri
Phil Strom dances in Mea Culpa
Phil Strom performs 'Mea Culpa' (2018 Redux), choreographed by Hari Krishnan. (Ellen Wallop/Asia Society)
Bahu-Beti-Biwi by Sheetal Gandhi
Excerpt from 'Bahu-Beti-Biwi' (2008), choreographed and performed by Sheetal Gandhi. (Ellen Wallop/Asia Society)
Bahu-Beti-Biwi by Sheetal Gandhi
Excerpt from 'Bahu-Beti-Biwi' (2008), choreographed and performed by Sheetal Gandhi. (Ellen Wallop/Asia Society)
Kuldeep Singh
Premiere of 'Re-thinking Orissan Dance' (2018), choreographed and performed by Kuldeep Singh. (Ellen Wallop/Asia Society)
Shubhra Prakash and Kuldeep Singh
Dancer/choreographer Kuldeep Singh and vocalist Shubhra Prakash during the premiere performance of Singh's work 'Re-thinking Orissan Dance.' (Ellen Wallop/Asia Society)
Paul Charbonneau performs in Holy Cow(s)!
Dancer Paul Charbonneau performs an excerpt from 'Holy Cow(s)!' (2017), choreographed by Seán Curran and Hari Krishnan. (Ellen Wallop/Asia Society)
Excerpts from Holy Cow(s)!
Dancers Roney Lewis and Xi Yi perform an excerpt for 'Holy Cow(s)!,' choreographed by Hari Krishnan. (Ellen Wallop/Asia Society)
Parul Shah
Dancer and choreographer Parul Shah performs her piece 'enduring silence' (2017). (Ellen Wallop/Asia Society)
Parul Shah and musicians
Musicians Arun Ramamurthy (violin), Jake Charley (cello), and Naren Budhakar (tabla) accompany dancer-choreographer Parul Shah in a performance of her work 'enduring silence.' (Ellen Wallop/Asia Society)
Parul Shah
Parul Shah performing 'enduring silence.' (Ellen Wallop/Asia Society)

Watch the full video of the performance:

Download the program notes