Of Gods, Poetry and Battle


Karna and Abhimanyu might have been on the opposite sides in the Mahabharata, but they both died before their time. "Where power is concerned, nobody is black or white. Everyone has different shades of grey. While Karna and Abhimanyu are age-old characters, their stories become more relevant in today's scenario than ever," says Shobha Deepak Singh, director, SBKK, and organiser of the Festival of Ballets.

A dance drama, it will feature different stories of Karna, Meera, Abhimanyu and Shree Durga at Shri Bhartiya Kala Kendra (SBKK). While Karna and Meera have been performed before, Abhimanyu and Shree Durga will be introduced this year. Talking about Shree Durga, Singh says, "Earlier, male dancers used to perform as female characters. In Shree Durga, we have followed that tradition where Shaburam Mohanto, as Karna, will also play the role of Durga." In terms of its relevance in today's world, Singh says, "The idea is to go beyond prescribed texts. The battle between Durga and Mahishasura is not only important in terms of our cultural heritage but becomes an interesting plot in the light of all the rape cases that are happening in Delhi. We are actually surrounded by Mahishasuras."

Meanwhile, Meera is not only about women and suffering but also of the art of poetry and its ability to reflect the deepest emotions. Shree Durga epitomises feminine strength, while Meera celebrates women's experiences across generations.

The Festival of Ballets will be performed on May 10 & 11, and 17 & 18 at SBKK. Passes available from May 6 onwards at the venue. Contact: 43503333

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