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Religious aspects of the North Indian classical dance Kathak

September 5, 2012 - 12:15-14:00

A seminar with Anne Keßler-Persaud, Georg-August-Universität, Göttingen. Open for everyone!

Time: Wednesday 12.15-14.00, Thursday 12.15-14.00, Friday 10.15-12.00
The North Indian dance Kathak originated in Hindu traditions but is also influenced by Muslim culture. Today, it is one of the ‘classical’ performance traditions of South Asia.
The lyrics of the songs are mostly taken from texts such as the Bhāgavatapurāṇa or poems of Surdās and Mīrabāī. Particularly close is the historic connection of Kathak and the Vaiṣṇava traditions of North India. This close relation is noticeable in the intersection of Kathak and Rāslīlā, a traditional dance drama enacting Kṛṣṇa’s life story which is performed every year in Braj/Mathurā. Particularly its ‘circle dance’ comprises of elements also seen in classical Kathak.
In the seminar, an overview of sources, traditions and religious affiliations of the schools of Kathak will be presented. We will also look at the position of Kathak among the other classical Indian dances. The main part of the course will focus the religious aspects of Kathak. On the basis of video recordings and the translation of the correspondent lyrics we will analyze some choreographies by Guru Pt. Rajendra Gaṅgāṇi-jī presented by his disciple Deodatt Persaud. In order to fully understand these choreographies, we will gather the depicted mythologies of the different Hindu gods and epic heroes represented in the dance performances.
There will be a life performance by Deodatt Persaud on the last day.
Venue: seminar room 12, P.A. Munchs Building, University of Oslo, Blindern.
Religious aspects of the North Indian classical dance Kathak


September 5, 2012