Narthaka Festival 2012
Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Joined in Dance
Celebrating the Vigour and Beauty of Male Dance
Welcome to Embrace 3, which brings us to the interesting focus on Male Dance. Sutra Foundation’s Nartaka Festival was mooted together with Natyanjali Trust of Chennai, to bring attention to the decline of male dancers in the dance profession. The Festival was co-directed by myself and Chennai-based bharatanatyam dancer/guru Shri Shanmuga Sundaram.
It was aimed at creating awareness that male dancing is exciting, beautiful and worth cultivating. It is most unfortunate that boys, due to the perception that dancing is ‘un-cool’, should find themselves eventually deprived of this opportunity to be sensitised and empowered by dance. Males should discover once again that dance is the most healthiest and natural way to integrate their outer and inner ‘landscapes’ so that, psychically and emotionally, they resonate with their own nature as well as with others.
This 5-day festival presented in 2012 was sensitively curated to showcase the talents of more than 45 male dancers from Malaysia, India and Australia who performed scintillating dances from traditional to modern repertoires. The festival also featured an exhibition and discourse of ‘Male Matters’ which gave a good picture of the state of affairs of male dancing in this part of the world.