Women, are women, are women. They hold power, they release it.
Choreographer Nova Bhattacharya’s Svāhā is inspired by women, rituals of life and love, building community and connection to the land.
Created in collaboration with percussionist Ed Hanley, featuring a core cast of 12 virtuoso dancers Svāhā is an experience for the eyes, ears, heart and mind. Joining the company onstage as a vital part of the visual and sonic amplification of the performance will be a body-choir: an intergenerational ensemble of women trained in Indian classical dance and music.
Driving, compelling, ceaseless and poetic, Svāhā celebrates the power of women and rituals to unite people to something beyond themselves. Svāhā and the body-choir are an opportunity to weave connection and myth-making into our communities, and to open hearts to a transformative experience.
The realization of a grand scale contemporary work featuring Canadian virtuosos of Indian classical dance cannot be done by one company alone. This work is a testament to generations of artists in Canada who have nurtured and developed Indian dance forms across this country's artistic landscape. By creating the body-choir we invite women who are dedicating hours of their lives to the arts, to join us onstage – to keep tala, to dance, to share their steps and their voices with us – to make a danced offering to this land.
Avant-Premiere - May 30, 2020 at Meridian Arts Centre
World Premiere - October 18, 2020 at Meridian Hall (formerly Sony Centre for the Performing Arts)
Performance - October 23, 2020 at Showplace Performance Centre, Peterborough
Performance - Date TBA at Vancouver Civic Theatre, Vancouver
Length: 75 minutes
Touring personnel: 7-12 core dancers + 1 artistic director + 1 technical director
Optional: Live music
Local performers: 14-60 local artists assembled as a body-choir
Load-in: 1-3 days, depending on scale
Available touring date: 2021 onward
As a production Svāhā is totally scaleable to suit different presenters needs and different size stages and communities. As additional performers to our core cast the body-choir can range anywhere from 14-60 in number and the live musician component is optional. Local artist involvement is open to all ages, including youth and elders. The body-choir will learn choreography in advance through a series of workshops and rehearsals in their local community. For information or booking: ayelen (at) novadance.ca