You could say we dance through life- talking using gestures and movement; calling body language an art. For the members of Avega Dance Creations, to use motion with music to tell a story is just an extension of being. Recalibrating the traditional, oratory dissemination of a thought, the ensemble is putting on a show called ‘Yatra’, or journey, at the Junction this weekend.
The aim is to lead you through a web of experience – gathered by the troupe over journeys both internalised and physical. It’s the second time the nine-song dance drama short tales are being rolled out, on September 27.
Ahead of the show, Avega co-founder Shruthi Rameshan says putting the show together proved a bit of a challenge. For one thing, the dancers all have day jobs. Then there are “the creative challenges,” she explains, “[which] have been about enculturation of audiences that are used to spitfire performances on reality shows. These shows have become a primary point of consumption of dance…so encouraging someone to come out to [a] live show to experience the difference has been a challenge. “
And then comes the wrestle with the audience; “How do you make a story clearly understandable to an audience, while still retaining the poeticism of the art form [dance]? Should you spoon-feed every detail or allow some space for interpretation? What is the right balance between reality and abstraction?” she wonders.
Is dance not enough? “We write spoken-word poetry to full the blanks where dance can’t speak for us…it is also about us understanding the deficiencies of dance as a language while for the audiences it is about learning a new language in the form of a dance story,” says Rameshan.
Hitesh Rajani, who is the other co-founder of the troupe, has a more intellectual pursuit. “When you are drowning into the depth of life, we want to inspire you to breathe underwater and take in the view. Our stories provide inspiration to navigate through dark situations in life,” he says.
Here's a look at the stories that are told in a 45-minute window through dance.
1. A Boy And His Sister
A look at the experiences of two siblings and their different experiences in the same situations because of their gender.
This is a walk into the mind of a gentleman who finds himself after a near-fatal accident paralyzed torso down. The story maps his journey from disillusionment to self-acceptance and the friendship between him and his caretaker.
3. Seven Stages
This story swap envisions the meeting of two grief-stricken strangers.
A piece about adultery and locker room-talk.
5. Remembering You
This is the tale of a mother equipping her daughter for a life without her.
6. Inner Child
Innocence and pure love walk through the dark land of dysfunctional familial dynamics.
A commentary on the current human condition and the monotony of a 9-to-5 job.
8. Talking Sweet
What’s normal? What’s not? This is a conversation between the two polarisations.
An ensemble piece that introduces and summarizes the production.
Don’t miss it!
Tickets to Yatra Revisited, which plays out at The Junction on September 27, are Dh75.