Ganga: Nitya Vaahini (The Eternal River)
"Every moment seemed precise, specific, focused. From those sharply defined beginnings arose complexities both rapturous and profound."
--The New York Times
"A goddess dances… The bharatanatyam of Malavika Sarukkai was flawless, her divine performance as intricate as lace."
A significant player in the Indian classical dance style bharatanatyam, dancer and choreographer Malavika Sarukkai returns to the Kennedy Center, continuing to push the style's boundaries. After making her Center debut as part of the maximum INDIA festival in March 2011, the Washington Post said, "As a performer, Sarukkai is phenomenally precise. Her arms slice the air like rapiers and her feet strike the ground with a unique sound that could be likened to the hard ping of raindrops on a tin roof. As an actress, she is a chameleon: Her body seemed to change shape as she moved from male to female roles. She is also a master of coordinating movement and music."
The solo dancer brings her seminal work Ganga: Nitya Vaahini (The Eternal River), which has evolved choreographically over a decade and pays homage to the river Ganges and its importance in terms of Indian culture, history, the environment, and spirituality. "In each of the four dance compositions," says Sarukkai, "I use different textures of soundscape, rhythm, and dance design. The language of the songs chosen is pan-Indian, from 15th-century poet Tansen to commissioned contemporary lyrics by S.V. Seshadri and Priya Sarukkai Chabria."
Performance Timing: 90 minutes, with no intermission