Chaturangan click A development initiative for South Asian Dance in the North West  click

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Activities of 2018

Unseen Design
Chaturangan has received an R&D grant from the Arts Council of England tocollaborate on an R&D with digital arts company Draw & Code:
A) developing new dance material on the theme of basic knowledge of particle science
B) experimenting with presenting work through flat or 360 screens, planetarium, VR, hand and body tracking and other new formats.
We can then decide on the most suitable/exciting form for the next phase of the project, for wider public presentation and touring.
The project will include artistic preparation, collaborative week, reflection, sharing, and planning for the future.
We will explore how to present a future film to a range of audiences in a variety of settings (galleries, museums, art centres, science festivals, dance festivals, educational institutions) and plan marketing and touring strategies.
Alongside different styles of dance, we will work with musician/composers, animators and poets.
The underlying aim of the project is to engage non-science audiences with scientific themes and inspire curiosity.
Others taking part incl;ude Chris Davies, Ali Harwood, Shane Shanbu, Kali Chandrasegaram, Mary Peirson and Karen Waynne.

(B)OLD Festival
In June 2018 Southbank centre introduced a new festival called (B)OLD to celebrate the work of British mature artists age 65 or over. Following the international reputation of Chaturangan, the company was invited to take part in this festival. They were the only dance company to represent South Asian dance. With enormous help and support of our regular collaborators the company produced a solo performance by Bisakha at QEH, Southbank. The evening was called “Bisakha Sarker live and in conversation”. Bisakha was accompanied by Kali Chandrasegaram, Karen Wynne, Jonathan Raisin and Arun Ghosh. This was one of the most prestigious opportunities for Chaturangan and its artistic director Bisakha Sarker. Southbank were not recording the show but gave us the permission to make our own video document of the performance. There is a video clip at, the password is : DANCE

Following are some of the comments from the audience.

François Matarasso
I wanted to tell you how beautiful, true and profound you were last night during one f the most memorable performances I’ve ever seen. Like many other people in that audience, I’m proud to be your friend.

David Henshaw
Bisakha, it was beautiful to see your work again last night. As you refine the physical range of your movement vocabulary, limiting it by what you now, physically, feel comfortable doing, so the spiritual element becomes more clear, more luminous. And your talking about the dance equally gains in eloquence. The programme was put together with such sensitivity - just the right length and balance - perhaps only you might add a very brief valedictory dance statement after the Q&A session, before you depart.
Beware, if you use that composition again that the piano doesn't become too dominant. It mustn't overshadow the dance - it should be heard, "through a glass, darkly."
Your interest in particle science continues to be fruitful in your dance!

Jaivant Patel
Beautiful evening spent in Queen Elizabeth Hall at Southbank Centre for 'Live & In Conversation with Bisakha Sarker' as part of their (B)old Festival, celebrating age & creativity .For anyone who missed it - it was inspirational and insightful to watch a brilliant and sensitive soul share her creative journey thus far with the world.I feel incredibly honoured to have witnessed the beauty of Bisakha Di's dance which had a depth that was universally able to connect with all. She became alive on stage like I've never seen her before! I hope I too am able to maintain a creative practice no matter what stage of career I am at.

Koffin Company in partnership with DaDaFest presented an exhibition of specially designed eco friendly coffins, Bisakha was one of the artists who contributed a design. Her thoughts on the design were as follows

The capsule will be of a translucent metallic duck egg colour. There will be a border in a dull gold design at the edge where it    opens. The design will be a simple wavy pattern with pieces of   mirror or similar shiny metallic pieces that can refract light. A few   lines from a poem by Rabindranath Tagore will be written in the 
  same gold as the border on the top of the ‘Koffin’ . The lines  
  could be  as simple as
                 Say good bye
                             as I go ….

The colour I have in mind is one that gives me a sense of space and  peace. I will attach a few images that may give some suggestion of the colour I am imagining. Gold is a colour of adornment. In my mind  it is associated with celebration, hope and beauty. Wave like pattern suggests ups and downs of life and a sense of continuation. As a dancer I find great comfort, confidence and courage from movement. The mirrors will reflect light and create a dance of light all around the Koffin. In life as well as in death I wish  to give out light and joy.

LEAP festival
Bisakha was asked to take part in their Vital platform within the LEAP festival.. Vital is a Community dance platform for older people. The performance took place at CAPSTONE THEATRE on 11th November.



Cheshire dance organised a training day called ‘NOW’ for professional artists to meet ACE dance officer and to learn more about the new funding structure. The workshops discussed the role of the creative producers. It was interesting to note that much of the responsibilities of the artistic director were the same as that of the producer.

Poetry event
Bisakha has attended three different informal poetry events organised by Ali Harwood. They offer great opportunity to come across a wide variety of people each with their unique life experience and love of words. The participants bring a wealth of material that can be used to make new dances or layer the performances of the existing dances. For Bisakha the experience of performing at the first event has proved to be a stepping stone for greater opportunities.

Performances attended
The Artistic Director Bisakha attended several important performances of South Asian dance to help her keep in touch with the current trends in the field. She had seen XENOS, the final solo performance by Akram Khan at Sadler’s wells, Malabika Sarukai ‘s new production THARI, at the Queen Elizabeth Hall, Southbank, Academi’s highly acclaimed show Troth at the Curve, Leicester, Dr Janaki Rangarajan at Milap, Liverpool, an Odissi performance Trigunam at Bhaban and Navtej Johar and Anita Ratnam in Presidency college, Kolkata.

Bisakha took part in the live performance linked to the Jai Chuhan exhibition. part of: Jai Chuhan: Remodel: Painting Studio , Asia Triennial Manchester 2018.



Odissi Summer School
Bisakha was invited by Parvati Rajamani to be chief guest at the 2018 Odissi Summer School in Bedford.




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Page last updated 06-Jan-2019 - Comments on the website welcome by Eric Foxley at the Dunkirk Arts Centre
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