Expression through Gesture: Storytelling in Indian Dance

Expression through Gesture: Storytelling in Indian Classical Dance

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

McConnell Library, Sydney, NS

4 p.m.- 6 p.m.

In this lecture-demonstration, Meera Varghese will present the Indian classical dance form of Bharatanatyam. Originally performed by temple dancers, Bharatanatyam has a strong narrative component called abhinaya, in which stories from Hindu epics and scriptures are depicted through the dancer’s embodiment of gods and goddesses. Performing choreographies by Sri Kalaimamani S. Ramalingam (Karaikal, India), Sri Jai Govinda (Vancouver, Canada), and Smt. Bragha Bessell (Chennai, India), Meera Varghese will demonstrate the storytelling techniques of Bharatanatyamthrough the use of codified hand gestures (mudras), facial expressions and stylized movements. Currently based in Cologne, Germany, Meera Varghese is an active performer, choreographer and teacher of Bharatanatyam and has been featured in numerous productions and dance festivals in Canada, India, and Europe, including the Mangani Tirunal Festival (Karaikal, India), Kalanidhi International Dance Festival (Toronto), Expanse New Works DanceFestival (Edmonton), and the International Cultural Diversity Festival (Bonn, Germany).