Exploring the Gita Govindam through Odissi and Bharat Natyam

Sunday, March 17, 2019
6:00 –8:00 pm

Donations welcome for the dancers

Preethi Ramaprasad, Shruti Abishek, and Sri Thina Subramaniam, professional classical Indian dancers with extensive performance careers, will perform excepts from their longer production of the Gita Govindam. The Gita Govinda (Song of Govinda) is a work of incomparable poetic beauty composed by the celebrated 12th-century Indian poet-saint, Jayadeva. The Gita Govindam describes the romance between Krishna and Radha as well as Krishna's relationship with the gopis of Vrindavan. Following the performance, Preethi, Shruti, and Thina will lead a discussion on how classical Indian dance forms such as Odissi and Bharat Natyam are used to explore these poems.

Preethi Ramaprasad is a multifaceted dancer, has been under the tutelage of a torchbearer of the Bharatanatyam tradition, Prof. Sudharani Raghupathy for 23 years. Since her debut performance at the age of 11, Preethi has toured India, Europe, and the U.S. both in solo and group shows. Preethi is passionate about teaching and has completed workshops at venues like Juilliard School of Arts, Columbia University, and the American International School. A keen researcher, Preethi also studies the intersection of Carnatic music, Bharatanatyam, and agency. 

Sri Thina Subramaniam is a professional Bharatanatyam and Odissi artist who has performed as a soloist and collaborator for over 20 years. Her initial training was at the Temple of Fine Arts, Malaysia an institution known for fostering various dance styles under one roof. Sri Thina has worked with international choreographers such as Mavin Khoo and Shobana Jeyasingh and performed at venues such as the Lincoln Center, Royal Opera House, and the Buckingham Palace. She recently curated the San Francisco West Wave Dance Festival where she presented her choreography of a Gita Govindam production called “The Affair” 

Shruti Abhishek is a professional Bharatanatyam Dancer from Mumbai, India currently based in San Francisco. At Nalanda Nritya Kala Mahavidyalaya, she earned her bachelor’s Degree of Performing Arts under the tutelage of Guru Smt Kanak Rele. She also trained with renowned academician and dance scholar Shri CV Chandrashekhar. Shruti has performed internationally including at the National Centre for the Performing Arts (NCPA), Modhera Dance Festival, Natya Darshan (Chennai), India Habitat Centre (Delhi), and Festival Indii (Poland). Shruti’s new initiative “Kshetram” is an institute in Pleasanton where she teaches Bharatanatyam to young children and adults.

Program begins with meditation and chanting, and ends with sharing a hearty vegetarian soup together.