Attakkalari’s new production looks at the intangible relationship humans share with spaces around them

Conceived and choreographed by Jayachandran Palazhy, the artistic director of Attakkalari, Sthavara Jangama is inspired by the Kannada Vachana philosophy

Ayesha Tabassum Published :  07th January 2022 04:59 PM   |   Published :   |  07th January 2022 04:59 PM

Sthavara-Jangama. Picture by Samuel Rajkumar

In the last two years, people have witnessed significant changes in their lives. People who were working in offices have had to adapt to the work from home culture, while those who came from small towns to cities for work, have had to move back to their hometowns. The imminent dependence on the virtual world to get things done is just increasing with every passing day. All these things cumulatively have contributed to the emergence of a new order.

This weekend, a new dance production, titled Sthavara-Jangama by the Attakkalari Dance Company, explores this idea of the intangible relationship that human beings share with their physical and virtual spaces. Conceived and choreographed by Jayachandran Palazhy, the artistic director of Attakkalari, Sthavara Jangama is inspired by the Kannada Vachana philosophy that advocates breaking away from rigid societal norms. “Sthavara means immobile and jangama means mobile in Sanskrit. We are looking at the relationship between moving people and objects. In 2020, we witnessed many things occurring simultaneously. Migrants were travelling back to their native places, while people in cities had to work from their homes. Homes that were spaces of refuge and sanctuaries to people, became spots of tension. There were significant changes and this is a commentary on that,” explains Jaychandran.

The show weaves diverse thoughts through its choreography. From moments of happiness, and acts of humanity, to poignant thoughts about people who built our cities having no space in our cities. All these collective memories of the time are explored through the show. Sthavara-Jangama is a promenade performance and will move from the rooftop to the foyer at the Bangalore International Centre. It features 16 dancers and award-winning musicians MD Pallavi and Bindhumalini who have composed music for the production. They will also recite poems in English, Marathi, Kannada, Tamil, Bengali and other languages.

“The choreography is a melange of contemporary and folk styles, and the poetry is quite evocative,” explains the director. The performance will be punctuated with some visual projections and images that have been created by Chris Zieglar, an award-winning theatre director and digital artist from Germany. “Images of architecture, from places like Hampi that act as anchors of Indian culture, are interspersed with images from the news,” explains Chris. Jayachandran says the idea of the production is to help the audience make sense of the contemporary realities of our country and the world. “It shows a mirror to the realities we are facing and perhaps the hour-long performance will make us become a little more empathetic,” he says. Sthavara-Jangama marks the opening of the 10th edition of the Attakkalari India Biennial.

January 7, 6.30 pm. At Bangalore International Centre, Domlur