Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Tsunami

In the shadows

I think I have always been a dancer.

There’s this photo of me as a toddler wearing this cutesy white bell bottomed pajamas and grinning away into the screen with my super curly locks framing my face. I look like I was dancing and posing for the camera.

Dance is like a meditation for me only instead of sitting in one place, I’m moving to the energy of the music and dance.

In prayer



Somewhere mid of the year, I had been toying with the idea of choreographing a dance piece when I was inspired by the moody music of a dance showcase at an open stage performance. A thought formed into my head and it slowly grew at first as a solo only to grow in size as I put in my imaginary dancers into their place in my vision.

By then I knew the piece was too big for the stage it had been initially conceived in and so I looked at my options at showcasing it. I had two ready places – one a festival I was initially excited about but was slowly hating and the other at my favourite place in KL, KLPAC. With time and persuasion (or more of blackmail from the director) the piece found its home as I submitted my paper and got accepted.

Hehehe I went for the first meeting and asked so does this mean we’re in? And I got the answer I would think so which was followed by that golden email which meant I had to find the music and choreograph the dance. Yes I need to have an end before I can begin.


Then came the frantic search for the song to fit the mood I wanted. I spent two days trying to find the song. I knew what I wanted but didn’t know if it existed, my heart said it did and so I dashed to my favourite music person Aravind, who within hours sent me the song that has now successfully haunted 5 women to do crazy stuff on stage. I’m not sure if the kid knows how vital the song is to the choreography and with his magic editing it became even more amazing. I owe you a treat! ;p

Music in hand you would think the choreography would be easy right? No it doesn’t work like that. Music, art, choreography all needs inspiration, you can’t just start like that it takes time and in dance you need to know your dancers and work according to their skills. By the time the choreography emerged, the vision in my head had changed so many times it’s become something totally different from the first spark.

But it was only when I met everyone at the first rehearsal that it fell into place. Every week that we meet, it gets stronger and more beautiful and each person has their own strength.

Ah but first I must tell you how I found my dancers. I posted my requirements on FB and was looking around when 3 of my friends separately asked me about it (and probably regretted the very next moment as) and I immediately said yes to all three. The third was the funniest coz all she did was ask and I said yes you can join and jumped in my chair gleefully. I had my five dancers! ;p

Two of my dancers have never performed on stage and I’m so impressed with them. The first time one of them did the second half, I was stunned with disbelief at the energy and what they were doing till I had to tell them pace yourself don’t get injured. ;p The other two are seasoned dancers so it’s not surprising to see them do well. But I love the combination of the group as everyone works together to help the other, practices (even though I bully some about it) diligently, are constantly thinking of it and most importantly everyone is excited.

It’s been such a wonderful time watching all of them dance and dancing as well. The truth is at the beginning of the choreography I was telling myself and another friend that this might be my last performance as a dancer and maybe I should retire as building my stamina every few years once is super tiring and not to mention the lack of time on my side at this point. But thanks to the gals and the whole dance itself, I’m back to enjoying myself and I’m raring for the next even though we’ve not even performed this one! ;p 

Last Sunday we gave each other names okay wait we got given names – so there’s psycho, cute, sexy, dirty and mama.     

It’s a dark, dark dance, if you must know. A total opposite of what we performed in 2009. But the best part is the team at KLPAC remember us from 2009 and are pretty excited to see what we have in store this time. Oh and we get disco balls ;p hehehe

Dancing is quite an interesting experience, at first you’re honing the steps and you go on repeating the dance in a pretty mechanical way. Only after the 10th full dancing session will you be able to fully bring out the emotions as you’re no longer wondering what the next step is.

There we were at the foyer of klpac as the haunting humm resonated through the halls. I walked into the centre of the stage and the music took over. As I sat there on the dias waiting for the drama and reacting to the actions on stage, my heart could feel the emotions of the scene taking place in front of me though I had my eyes closed with just enough open for an idea of the cues. Each time I reacted to those cues, the anger in me built up and the hair on my arms started tingling as I got goosebumps.

When I got up to wake the chaos in my dancers I could feel the vibrations of the anger as we transformed into beings waiting to destroy and as fast as it started it ended and we were done. And so my vision is complete and is awaiting its staging as we hone our skills and work into the magic of the haunting music.

While we’re taking part in a festival which is also a competition, I told the gals from day 1 enter this only coz you want to dance and not coz you want to win. I don’t care if we win or go to the finals, this will be an experience you will not forget as you will dance your heart out there.

So this will be my offering for Devi for Navarathri this year. We are evoking Kali ma in one of her forms as Mother Earth. May god bless us and let us dance our hearts out each night, without fail and let fatigue only brush us with its long fingers while the goddess vibrates in us.

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5 comments:

ashok said...

Visit, is that u in the first foto?!

Visithra said...

Heheh yes it is ;)

ashok said...

wow!!!

kupukupu arts and event said...

hi..dear tsunami.... i'm medulla oblongata... olah karma ...
:) my email is kupukupu99x@gmail.com
your rococco style so goddest damn nice.
its short+ sweet.
keep in touch. me fb only meh.
try to blog but, a bit complicated to me...hahahah
chill...

Visithra said...

Ashok thanks ;)

Olah : nice to c u here too n thanks so much i need to read up on itla im intrigued ;)

N i liked ur page ;)