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Capital set to host twin fests

Bhubaneswar, Dec. 10: Here comes your opportunity to watch the performances of a galaxy of Odissi dancers.

Two major international Odissi festivals to be held here this month will feature dancers from across the world. Many of them are here and gearing up for the festivals while others will arrive in a few days.

The third edition of the city-based cultural outfit Samskritiki will organise Odissi International while the International Odissi Dance Festival will be hosted by the state tourism department at the two international festivals.

The festivals will see dancers from different countries, mostly disciples of Odisha-based dancers, perform on the same stage where stalwarts from all over the country will present their recitals.

For an Odissi dancer from the US, Amanda Geroy, Odisha is home away from home.

“We get very few chances to perform in front of the audience that understands Odissi to the core. When they appreciate your art you feel blessed and when they suggest improvisation it is the best advice for a dancer,” said Amanda, a disciple of Odissi dancer Sujata Mohapatra.

In Odissi International to be held from December 19 to 22 will see a solo performance by senior-most Odissi exponent Minati Mishra. Aruna Mohanty, Sujata Mohapatra, Kabita Dwivedy also perform here along with Natalie Raut from UK, Vrinda Rani, Taissia Didi, Elena Knyazeva, Anjelina from Russia, Sachiko Murakami and Eiko Shinohara from Japan, Amanda Geroy and Lisa Santhanam, USA, Luisa Spagna from Italy, Reeti Rajguru and Manishikha Baul from Singapore, A.Rambaran from The Netherlands, Vinod Kevin Bachan from Trinidad.

The International Odissi Dance Festival will showcase exponents such as Kiran Segal, Sonal Mansingh, Kumkum Mohanty and other veterans. It will also give a platform to dancers from 10 foreign countries. The festival will be held from December 23 to 29.

“Ever since I performed at the Odissi International last time, I have become more confident because senior dancers and viewers from Odisha had appreciated my performance. This has helped me immensely. I am rehearsing with dedication this year so that I can give a better performance,” said Maria Laura Valdez, Odissi dancer from Peru.

The two events are seen as an attempt to bind together the global Odissi fraternity.

“Both events offer a grand stage for young dancers of Odisha and other states as well as from different countries. We must look beyond the performances and see how much learning and interaction the festivals offer. These are very significant festivals,” said Aruna Mohanty.