Hardly a modern version
Shinjan’s cultural evening (Rabindra Sadan, July 12) commenced with a solo Mohiniattam recital by Madhuparna Sen Barat. It was followed by two dance compositions, Surya Putra and Anya Uttiyo. The former was the story of Karna, the valiant yet tragic character of the Mahabharata, while latter was based on an ancient Jatak tale. Both were choreographed and directed by Kohinoor Sen Barat and Sujoy Thakur. Kohinoor as Karna and Uttiyo failed to bring out the subtle emotions of the characters; neither could he visually create any aesthetic appeal. The costumes and wig of Karna were much too loud. The closed fist or shrugging shoulders of the protagonist hardly depicted his gallantry. This high-pitched presentation was far from being a modern interpretation of the epic.
Sharmila Basu Thakur
Kala Bhavan-trained Subrata Pal’s solo exhibition at the Academy of Fine Arts had his drawings of simple female forms in mixed media. The striking resemblance of Pal’s figurations, including anatomical distotions, to the prototypes fashioned by some elder artists of Bengal may be purely coincidental, but the younger painter should beware of such similarities. Another aspect he should guard himself against is the tendency to indulge in empty variations on basically the same image. The titles used by him, such as Isolation, Devi, Lady, Pujarini and Swing, are thus virtually interchangeable. The landscapic creation, View Through My Window, by contrast, is imaginative and may well be considered the finest piece of them.
The Eastern Zonal Cultural Centre’s ‘Suddha Nritta’, a Bharatnatyam performance by Prakriti Bhaskar from Mumbai at Bhara-tiyam Multiplex on July 11. A four-day-long workshop, Nritta Nattuvangam was based on unusual techniques of cross-rhythm choreography. A group of aspiring dancers, trained by Prakriti, expounded the mathematical framework of nritta, a decorative passage of dance. Complicated rhythmic patterns and their permutations were explored by the dancers in Jatiswaram,Varnam and Tillana. The adavu (a series of static positions linked to form movement) ta kita taka dhimi was presented by Souraja and Sohini. The former brought out a different dimension ev-en in such a small piece of dance. Jatiswa-ram performed by Tania Dias demanded more vivacity. Prakriti’s Shivadhyanasloka, however, was a neat presentation.