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In late 2012 and early 2013 I lived and worked in Bangalore, India for 2 months. I was engaging in the FACETS choreographic residency and choreographing a new solo sword dance Avantika, which premiered in the Attakkalari India Biennial 2013.


The Attakkalari FACETS residency
FACETS, a six week choreographic residency in hosted by Attakkalari Dance Company in Bangalore, India (December 5 2012 – January 2 2013) provided asupportive system to emerging choreographers from around the world to create unique works that make an audience relook at the city, our bodies, our minds, our ideas of dance and also our notions of presentation and performance spaces.

16 emerging choreographers -
Aguibou Bougobali, Bukino Faso; Airi Suzuki, Japan; Anoushka Kurien, India; Choy Ka Fai, Singapore; Deepak Kurki Shivaswamy, India; Inbal, Israel; Isak Immanuel, USA; Kristina Setorp, Norway; Leandro Kees, Germany; Paula Rechtman, Mexico; Rianto, Indonesia; Santosh VS, India; Surigit Nongmeikapam, India; Yeon-Woo Na, South Korea; Yola Yulfianti, Indonesia; and Jade Dewi Tyas Tunggal, Australia.

We were mentored by an international dance, theatre and stagecraft faculty -
Jayachandrandran Palazhy, India – FACETS Director; Lars Erik H Bratlie, Norway – Light Design; Gideon Obarzanek, Australia – Choreography; Margie Medlin, Australia – Media Arts; Horst Muhlberger, Germany – Light Design; Meryl Tankard, Australia – Choreography; Janet Lilly, USA – Choreography; Nicole Seiler, Switzerland – Choreography; Jatin Vidyarthi, India – Music; Sankar Venkateswaran, India – Theatre; Jospeh Hyde, UK – Music; and Thomas Dolzler, Sweden – Light Design.

During the Attakkalari Biennial, I presented my new solo dance Avantika during FACETS at the Alliance Francaise de Bangalore.

Video of FACETS performance


FACETS was structured to work as a collective with group sessions that focused on technique and exploration (including Raam Kumar R, India – Kalarippayattu workshop; Minal Prabhu, India – Bharatanatyam workshop; and Muraru Sharan Gupta, India – Kathak workshop), and feedback (3 open showings and Mentors visits during the rehearsal process), with separate rehearsals (in different dance studios across Bangalore – including Just Dance, Latin Dance India, Smart Move etc) and production schedules aimed at meeting each choreographer’s individual needs.

Through the interaction with the Attakkalari Repertory company (I began my studio process with 2 weeks of rehearsals with Diya Naidu and Hemabharathy Palani) and other Bangalore dancers, there was a sharing of knowledge, experience and understanding of contextualising contemporary art-making and the challenge of finding a new voice and vocabulary in the terrain of Bangalore, of India and even of a global platform.


FACETS photography: Lekha Naidu

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