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SITA-s - Response
a Neo Bharatam
Responses - students' feedback to the performance, DANCE KATHA version of a million
on May 3, 2015 at the NYU Steinhardt School, Provincetown Playhouse at 133 MacDougal Street in Greenwich Village
Storytelling in the Classroom, Spring 2015
Thank you very much for your beautiful exposition of "A Million
Sitas". Your lecture-demonstration was erudite, creative and a
visual treat, as you used simple but exquisite props. You brought
to life the butterfly as Manthara; the frog Mandodari and the grand princess
Shoorpanakha who did not conform to the expected standards of female
behavior. It was a wonderful exposition of the many aspects of a woman,
with very creative interpretations.
- Nanditha Krishna, Director, The CP Ramaswami Aiyar Foundation (February 10, 2013)
"In a unique blend of word, music and movement, Anita brought to us
Sita's hidden experiences and also her relationship with some characters
of the Ramayana hitherto unexplored by any dancer. A MILLION SITA's was
a soul searching moment for me"
- Guru Maya Rao, Natya Institute of Kathak, Bengaluru
like language, is a living a breathing medium.
character ceases to be a mythological one when performed in its multiple
female character in the Ramayana are the lifeline and backbone of that
story. Collecting and retelling them is not just an act of performance
but an attempt in discovering social reality.
production of a million sita-s was a strong attempt at rejuvenating urban
mythologies and restructuring one's thoughts at the innumerable performance
possibilities of india's rich mythological canvas
- Veejay Sai,
Cultural writer, Bengaluru
is a clarion call for dance. It shows how one can raise the bar of performance,
how boundaries can be pushed and how exploring an artist's mind can yield
such great results.
stunning production had many outstanding elements in Lakshmi and Subhiksha
Rangarajan's music, Viji Krishnan's violin, Priya Murle's narration, Kesvan's
multi percussion, visual design by Rex and choreography inputs from Hari
Krishnan. Each of the women portrayed - Ahalya, Surpanakha, Manthara, Sabari
and Sita - raised many questions that are relevant even today.
made me think!
- Chitra Mahesh,
Cultural Writer, voiceofartists/facebook
Dear Ms. Anita
I had the
wonderful opportunity to view "A Million Sitas" last week in Karthik Fine
Arts. The performance was really beautiful...Especially the act of Sabari
was truly heart felt.. The devotion of Sabari towards Lord Rama was shown
with so much purity of mind that automatically tears came out...
The act of
Mantara was also very powerful...The body language of Mantara as a hunchback
who loved her Bharata and was angry with Rama as He made fun of her in
His childhood was remarkable...
raised by Sita in Her prologue were also very thought provoking.. Especially
when She asks people that if She is so auspicious then why do people hesitate
to keep Her name for their daughters...Also the strength of Her character
was shown very beautifully in the end when She tells that She acts out
of Her Will...
my congratulations on this Truly Heartfelt and Beautiful Performance...
I am writing
after witnessing your performance at the Bhavan. I thoroughly enjoyed your
brave attempt (as always) in projecting a strong contemporary idea to our
dear Chennaites & more so the conservative Mylaporeans!! It was very
refreshing to see a production with bold feminist ideals. I admire the
technical perfection you were able to achieve in terms of lightning design,
musician set-up, most captivating props and most importantly, the way in
which everything was weaved into the fabric of dance presentation.
enjoyed your portrayal of Surpanaka and the innovative way of introducing
mantra in that hunch-back rhythmic section! I loved the final frame wherein
you were using your two feet and their interplay-conversation to depict
the underlying thoughts. I thought that was a brilliant way to express
really loved it, and I am not just saying that to please you. It was so
beautiful. It was a visual treat, it was a musical treat, you were amazing
in all five roles and while the narrative (correct word?) was very simply
written, it said so much! It was really good writing.
I want to
thank you for reminding me of how wonderful creative arts can be. Yesterday's
performance made me feel so alive and made me want to place those parts
of my life front and centre again. Thank you for that!
I just wanted
to write to you about it but although I feel like I have so much to say
I wasn't sure I could find the vocabulary, so I blogged instead, and want
to share that with you now: http://justswarna.blogspot.com/2010/12/million-sita-s-and-remembering-joy-of.html
Managing Trustee, The Prajnya Trust