Thursday, August 16, 2018

The profound eloquence of Odissi dance

By Alastair Macaulay
Ms. Mudgal’s acting is wonderfully eloquent, entirely stylized, utterly convincing.CreditAndrea Mohin/The New York Times
Radha, goddess and lover, consumed by love for Krishna, has awaited his arrival all night long. But when he comes, his eyes are heavy with sleepiness and his lips are dark with kohl from the eyes of another woman. Radha disregards his excuses. She tells him to leave her alone. Radha here is Arushi Mudgal. And her dance monologue, “Ashtapadi — Yahi Madhava,” is taken from a 12th-century Sanskrit poem, the Gita Govinda, by Jayadeva. The item — perhaps seven minutes long — was part of Ms. Mudgal’s 90-minute solo recital on Monday at La MaMa, the opening dance event of Drive East, New York’s annual festival of Indian dance and music. The genre practiced by Ms. Mudgal is Odissi, deriving from the temple-dense Odisha or Orissa on India’s eastern coast. [More]
Arushi Mudgal is one of the foremost young talents in the field of Odissi today, known for her technical virtuosity and creative approach to tradition.