Attakkalari India Biennial 2013

Platform 13 - Emerging South Asia

As the largest contemporary dance festival in South Asia, there is a dedicated platform for emerging artists from the South Asia region. At Platform 13, the emerging choreographers will present short excerpts of their work, present their process and talk about their works-in-progress.

Wed 30 Jan & Thu 31 Jan * 11am onwards

Gurunanak Bhavan, Jasma Bhavan Road

Look out for
Diya Naidu

Bardo Beings (excerpt)


Since 2007, Diya Naidu has been a member of Attakkalari's Repertory Dance Company - she is trained in bharatanatyam, contact improvisation, contemporary movement techniques, jazz ballet, kalaripayattu, kathak and yoga. Naidu is interested in movement as a signifier of the "happenings" within the body that results not just from her training but also a function of being and living in the world. In 2010, Naidu choreographed her first solo work - Nadir that explored the paradoxical state of experiencing aloneness in the context of a chaotic urban lifestyle. At Platform 13, Naidu will present a short excerpt from her latest choreographic work, Bardo Beings, a duo work - Naidu with Ronita Mukerjee, which is largely inspired by Sogyal Rinpoche's Tibetan Book of Living and Dying. Through this work, she explores the concept of 'bardo', which could loosely be translated as point of transition during a life cycle, therefore death, life, birth and rebirth as also bardos. The soundscape of the work is largely non-rhythmic and drawn from chants, gongs, shamanic drums and text from Naidu's sessions with a hypnotherapist.

Preethi Athreya

Light Doesn't have Arms to Carry Us

Chennai-based contemporary dancer, Preethi Athreya trained in bharatanatyam and holds a post-graduate degree in Dance Studies from the Laban Centre, London. Athreya's work is marked by a constant dialogue with existing form and content, and the possibilities of reframing them. She has created solo works beginning with Kamakshi (2003), Inhabit (2006), Porcelain (2007) and Sweet Sorrow (2010). Athreya has also been working with critically-acclaimed choreographer, Padmini Chettur in Chennai since 1999. At Platform 13, Athreya will introduce the audiences to her new work, Light Doesn't Have Arms to Carry Us, based on a composition for piano by French composer, Gerard Pesson. The music, in turn is inspired by the writings of Pierre Albert Jourdan, whose one-line poem 'La lumiere n'a pas de bras pour nous porter' (Light Doesn't Have Arms To Carry Us) forms the title of the musical composition. The work sets itself the task of creating material with movement, text and mime based on the structure of the music and its composition. The objective of the work is to arrive at a visual rhythm based on an aural experience.

Hemabharathy Palani



Hemabharathy Palani has trained and performed with Attakkalari's Repertory Dance Company for the past eight years. Palani has a unique movement style that has naturally evolved by blending the distilled vocabularies of classical Indian dance forms - bharatanatyam and kuchipudi - with the abandon of contemporary dance techniques. Palani premiered her first solo work, Chaaya (Shadows), at the Attakkalari India Biennial 2009, which had movement sourced from the visceral traces of child sexual abuse and then, in 2010, she premiered her second solo work, Uruvam, which examined complex issues around transgender identities in India and celebrated differences in form.At this session, Palani will talk about the process of her forthcoming work, Trikonanga, which is portmanteau word formed by merging trikon meaning triangle and anga meaning body. This work hopes to explore the ideas of body and space as architectural networks of triangles. Trikonanga is Palani's continued attempt to work within the contours of a uniquely Indian-Contemporary performance milieu, emanating from a performance language that emerges from a strong grounding in classical dance and practice as a contemporary dancer.

Look out for

Tushar Kalia



Mumbai-based Tushar Kalia has trained in Mayurbhanj chhau and contemporary dance techniques. Kalia has previous worked as co-choreographer with Sadhya, a unit of performing arts and has now started, the Tushar Kalia Dance Company. Kalia's movement vocabulary is a search to find newness in the intersections between his contemporary dance techniques and his foundation training in the dynamic form of Mayurbhanj chhau. Kalia will perform excerpts of his latest work, Genesis, at Platform 13, which explores the concept of energy and life when breathe into a formless entity and the shapes, journeys and movements this entity takes on once infused with life.

Sabbir Ahmed Khan

What Happened Last Saturday?


Sabbir Ahmed Khan has trained in kathak and through short term modules has learnt aerial dancing, bharatanatyam, classical jazz, contemporary movement techniques, kalaripayattu, lathikhela, a marital art form, Manipuri dance and salsa. Khan is currently the creative director of Shakti -Shadhona's feminist dance project. With this dance project, Khan has choreographed numerous productions; most of them based on the works of poet laureate Rabindranath Tagore. At this showcase, Khan's work, What Happened Last Saturday?, this deals with the constraints faced by dancers in Bangaladesh, who have to make do with available resources. In this work, Khan will re-enact a particular Saturday where a sticky situation was resolved creatively.

Elahe M

New Work


Elahe M has graduated in theatre direction from Sooreh University - Art & Architecture, Iran and has worked with theatre and contemporary dance performances and has learnt movement techniques and presentation skills through her participation in these productions and various workshops. She also interested in directing dance films. Her new work uses kinetic devices attached to the body of the performer, which through technological assistance creates sounds and images by receiving each signal from the performer. The attempt is to create a multidimensional space - created by movement, sound and images. Elahe will show a video of this new work, examples of her previous work and talk about her creative process.

Look out for

Mayuka Ueno Gayer

Floating Spheres


Japanese, Delhi-based Mayuka Ueno Gayer began training in ballet at the age of three and is currently training in Odissi with Pratibha Jena at the Triveni Kala Sangam, Delhi on a grant from the Indian Council for Cultural Relations. Gayer has worked with artists and choreographers in France and premiered her production, Millititle, which was co-choreographed Ray Nakazawa, at la Biennale nationale de danse du Val de Marne. Gayer's latest work, Floating Spheres focuses on the 'in-betweeness' between the seen and the unseen, between the inside and the outside, between the vertical and the horizontal, between gravity and anti-gravity, between the everyday and the sacred, between the larger kinesphere and the smaller one. Gayer will perform Floating Spheres at Platform 13.

mayuka is supported by Japan Foundation of New Delhi

Ronita Mookerji

I See Dreams in Grey


Ronita Mookerji has trained in bharatanatyam, classical ballet, contact improvisation, contemporary dance techniques and kalaripayattu. Through shorter modules, she has explored jazz, Pilates and light design. Mookerji is an integral member of Attakkalari's Education Outreach Programme. As a choreographer, she showcased her first solo, For You a Thousand Times Over, at the Kobe-Asia Contemporary Dance Festival 2012. At the same festival, she collaborated with Japanese dance Keiko Yamaguchi to create We Need the Heaters On. In her latest solo work, I See Dreams in Grey, Mookerji explores the vastness and the limitations of the concept of love through a 'collage' dance work. Mookerji delved into her personal experiences and collected a sensorial bank that formed the source for movement - such as smells, colours, textures, images, experiences and memories associated with love.

Venuri Perera

Thalattu (Lullaby)

Sri Lanka

Sri Lankan choreographer and performer, Venuri Perera has trained in Kandyan dance and holds a post-graduate degree in Dance Studies from the Laban Centre, London. She is a founding member and coordinator of the Contemporary Dance Forum in Sri Lanka and a permanent member of the Floating Space Theatre Company, Sri Lanka. She is also a visiting lecturer for the Diploma in Choreography at the Sri Lanka Foundation Institute and Digital Media Academy. Perera has presented her solo choreography at platforms such as Resolutions, London (2009), Colombo Dance Platform, (2010, 2012) and Young Choreographer's Platform, Attakkalari India Biennial, Bangalore. (2011). Thalattu, meaning lullaby, will be presented by Perera at Platform 13. The work attempts to embody the sense of despair and loss of dignity of women affected by war and displacement. The source text for the work is writer-activist Kumari Kumaragamage's poetry collection, No asu kan walata (For the Ears that Haven't Heard).

Free Entry for Platform 13 click here for more detailed schedule