First of its kind in the world : Bharatanatyam (south Indian Classical Dance) on wheel Chairs Innovation and revolution in the history of classical dances of India.
Yes! This is the time to arise and awake and see to believe - an innovation and revolution in the history of classical dances of India. Performing Bharatanatyam on wheel chairs and use of wheels in place of legs has taken years and hours of hard work and innovative methodology. In this unique performance, one can witness indomitable spirit of these differently abled artistes in each movement dance.
Today it is our privilege that the most respected classical dance form Bharatanatyam can be performed by disabled people on wheel chairs. The complete adavu (steps), jathi (combination of advus), thirmanams (sequence of pure rhythmic dance composed of adavu-jathis) are reinvented on wheels and these are performed with absolute precision. Wheel chairs have great advantage to perform many steps, to mention a few like rangakramana adavu (covering the stage), bhramari (spins), jaru adavu (sliding), with speed and precision. The spinning speed of a wheel chair is faster than an accomplished dancer’s spins! The speed on wheel chairs is about 100 kms/hr. They have excelled both in Nritta and Nritya.
- Ability Unlimited, a non-profit in India that teaches classical Indian dance adapted for wheelchair use as therapy. Besides Bharatanatyam they also have Bagwatgeeta, yoga, “miracle” (where the wheels spin up to 150-200 km/h), Sufi dance, martial arts, Durga, Ramayana, and a whole bunch of others.
“Even when I get the fried-chicken special of the day, I have to dig into it like it’s filet mignon,” Viola Davis said. She was speaking not of meals, but of roles. During her 30-year career as an actress, Davis has played a crack-addicted mother (“Antwone Fisher”), the mother of an abducted child (“Prisoners”) and the mother of James Brown (“Get On Up”). Her characters often serve to “hold up the wall” of the narrative, she said, like the empathetic best friend in “Eat, Pray, Love” or the kindly stranger in “Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close.” Or the kindly mental-institution psychiatrist in “It’s Kind of a Funny Story,” the kindly rape-treatment counselor in “Trust” or the kindly medium in “Beautiful Creatures.”
“I always got the phone call that said: ‘I have a great project for you. You’re going to be with, hypothetically, Vanessa Redgrave, Julianne Moore, Annette Bening,’ ” she said, sitting in the living room of her San Fernando Valley home, barefoot on the couch in a gray T-shirt and leggings, her hair wrapped under a black turban. “Then I get the script, and I have a role that lasts for a page or two.”
Yet over and over again, Davis has made these marginalized characters memorable.
Ibeyi, made up of Cuban-born, Paris-based twin sisters Naomi and Lisa-Kaindé Díaz, is an electronic doom soul duo who are forging a new spiritual sound with their debut EP Oya. The 19-year-old musicians are XL Recordings‘ newest signees, and their introductory singles “Oya” and “River” possess a hypnotic blend of hip-hop, electronica, and blues infused with Yoruba prayers and folk songs that will transport you to a higher realm upon first listen.
Singing in French, English, Spanish and Yoruba, Ibeyi count among their primary influences Nina Simone, Meshell Ndegeocello, James Blake and their late father, the celebrated Cuban jazz percussionist Miguel “Anga” Diaz. Ibeyi’s vocal range, which wavers from the raspy and wraith-like to the sonorous and divine, is ideal for their sonic palette which revels in the phantasmagorical groove of liturgical Yoruba songs. Besides singing in Yoruba–which was brought to Cuba by ensaved West Africans slaves–Ibeyi honor their father’s legacy and Afro-Cuban heritage through their percussive production and use of live instruments. Beatsmith Naomi plays both the cajón and the batá while Lisa-Kaindé remains more in tune with the musical mythos of Ibeyi’s sound by weaving Yoruba lore deeply into their lyrics. “River” is dedicated to the goddess Oshun (the mother of the Ibeyi, and their first single and EP are both named for Oya (the benevolent orisha who took the Ibeyi in after Oshun was accused of witchcraft for birthing twins and kicked them out).
Directed by Céline Sciamma. Starring Karidja Toure, Assa Sylla, Lindsay Karamoh, and Marietou Toure.
I am a big of Céline Sciamma’s work and this looks excellent. It’s has already been getting great reviews. One can be read here. I spend a lot of time wishing for movies like this to get made. So I get excited every now and then when a film featuring black characters especially black female characters being shown as people with real lives makes an appearance. Absolutely can’t wait for a stateside release. In the meantime check out Sciamma’s other work which is readily available on Netflix.
I had to understand that the audience only wanted white, straight, male leads. I was assured that as long as I made the white, straight men in my scripts prominent, I could still offer groundbreaking characters of other descriptions (fascinating, significant women, men of color, etc.) – as long as they didn’t distract the audience from the white men they really paid their money to see.
Only to learn there was still something wrong with my writing, something unanticipated by my professors.My scripts had multiple women with names. Talking to each other. About something other than men. That, they explained nervously, was not okay. I asked why. Well, it would be more accurate to say I politely demanded a thorough, logical explanation that made sense for a change (I’d found the “audience won’t watch women!” argument pretty questionable, with its ever-shifting reasons and parameters).
At first I got several tentative murmurings about how it distracted from the flow or point of the story. I went through this with more than one professor, more than one industry professional. Finally, I got one blessedly telling explanation from an industry pro: “The audience doesn’t want to listen to a bunch of women talking about whatever it is women talk about.”
According to Hollywood, if two women came on screen and started talking, the target male audience’s brain would glaze over and assume the women were talking about nail polish or shoes or something that didn’t pertain to the story. Only if they heard the name of a man in the story would they tune back in. By having women talk to each other about something other than men, I was “losing the audience.”