Facing off are Sooraj Subramanian, one of the foremost exponents of bharathanatyam and a regular collaborator of Jeyasingh’s, and Shaileshj Bahoran, hip hop dancer, choreographer and leader of his own crew, Illusionary Rockaz.
Through their encounter, Jeyasingh explores rhythm, shared history, what brings them together and what separates them.
Shobana Jeyasingh is one of the most exciting choreographers working today. She herself is the point of confluence of different cultures and traditions. She was trained as a bharatanatyam dancer, so Indian culture and pure classical line informed her artistic beginnings. She then became a choreographer and developed her own, predominantly contemporary language.
Her internationally-acclaimed work is inspired by a dynamic view of history. Possessed of an insatiably curious mind, she has brought audiences explorations of different cultures and stories asking questions about and shining light into our world and how we got here.
Jeyasingh’s Bayadère – The Ninth Life, which ran at the Linbury Studio in the Spring and earned a five-star review on these pages, brought us a fresh and refreshing look at one the classics of 19th century ballet. In her version, the ballet is seen a through the eyes of a 21st century young Indian man, at first bemused by 19th century Europe’s simplistic view of India as just an exotic other, then slowly and inexorably drawn into the story’s potent imagery.
Wherever possible, Jeyasingh escapes the constraints of the theatre and creates site-specific works, such as TooMortal, a dance work for pews in historic churches that premiéred at the 2012 Venice Biennale; and In Flagrante staged at a Rome art gallery.
Material Men features a new score by Australian composer Elena Kats-Chernin which will be performed live by The Smith Quartet, and will premiére at the Queen Elizabeth Hall as part of a double-bill with Strange Blooms. This 2013 piece, created to mark Shobana Jeyasingh Dance’s 25th anniversary, is an ensemble work for eight dancers inspired by the cellular life of plants. Music is by Gabriel Prokofiev.
This is a programme for those who seek to be inspired and challenged by performance, and relish an intelligent and inquiring approach to art and the way in which it reflects the world we live in.
|What||Material Men: Shobana Jeyasingh, Southbank Centre|
|Where||Queen Elizabeth Hall, South Bank Centre, Belvedere Road, SE1 8XX | MAP|
|Nearest tube||Waterloo (underground)|
16 Sep 15 – 17 Sep 15, 7:30 PM – 9:30 PM