This coming Sunday, Hamilton will be offering a unique opportunity to witness an uncharted journey of bharathanatyam and Balinese dance. True to Hamilton’s well known artistic history, this event will tell a tale from the magnificent Indian epic, Mahabharata, in a modern format. Mahabharata is a vivid story told in a 3 part section that portrays a “dynastic conflict, earth-shattering chaos, and finally, an abiding but tenuous calm”. The artistic director of Sampradaya Dance Creations, Lata Pada, joins forces with Balinese choreographer Dr. Wayan Dibia on this modern telling of an Indian classic.
The event itself will feature 8 stunning dancers from across Canada, India and Indonesia. You’ll bear witness to a beautiful display of movement from Atri Nundy (Canada), Nithya Garg (Canada), Parshwanath Upadhye (India), Adithya Veedu (India), I Gede Radiana Putra 9 (Indonesia), Ni Putu Ayu Era Pinatih (Indonesia), I Dewa Putu Selamat Raharja (Indonesia), Ni Putu Eka Laksmi Dewi (Indonesia) with Lata Pada and Wayan Dibia as narrators.
Lata Pada is an award winning artist. The President of India himself awarded Lata the Pravasi Bharatiya Samman in January of 2011. Lata is one of only fifteen persons of Indian origin in the entire world to have been awarded this distinction. But the accolades don’t stop there: In 2012, Lata was honored with the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal, recognizing her contributions to the community as a Canadian citizen. Just a year later, in 2013, she was inducted into Mississauga City’s Legends Row, and was also named one of the Most Influential Individuals of the entire City of Mississauga. Point being, this show is no amateur outing.
Lata is the artistic director and principal choreographer of Sampradaya Dance Creations. She is widely recognized for forging a unique niche in Canadian dance, and the Toronto Star labeled her as an artist with “clear direction in dance (making) her own of the few who can successfully translate a thousand year-old tradition into 21st-century realities”. She has trained under India’s distinguished gurus Kalaimamani Kalyanasundaram and Padmabhushan Kalanidhi Narayanan. She has also had a noteworthy career as a bharatanatyam soloist, and has performed in prestigious dance festivals across India, Canada, USA, Malaysia, Indonesia, Cuba, Colombia and Mexico. She was originally born in Bangalore, India, but moved to Canada in 1964, and has since called it home.
As if that wasn’t enough, Lata was honored the Order of Canada in 2009, and has the distinction of being the first South Asian artist to receive this prestigious honor. It was awarded to her for her contributions to the development of South Asian dance, and commitment and support of the Indo-Canadian community. Finally, Lata holds an M.F.A (Master of Fine Arts) in dance, and she is also an Adjunct Professor in the Master’s Program of Dance at York University.
Believe it or not, there’s more, and more…and more. A founding member of the Royal Ontario Museum’s South Asian Advisory Committee, she currently serves on the Canadian Dance Assembly’s Advocacy Committee. She also serves on the advisory committees of the Toronto Arts Council, York University’s Faculty of Fine Arts and Centennial College. She had previously served on the board of the Canadian Dance Assembly and the Arts Advisory Committee of the Laidlaw Foundation. She is a frequent presenter at the international dance conferences and symposia, and is a regular motivational speaker and workshop leader for corporate and community organizations where she speaks on her life experience, creativity and collaboration in the arts. She has been involved in various film and television including documentaries and interviews on CBC, TV Ontario, Vision TV, Rogers TV, OMNI TV and Bravo. Her resume is truly awe-inspiring, and should be more than enough reason to check out this event. Even if dance isn’t your thing, this will be a cultural experience that will win you over with its dense story telling.
The event takes place this coming Sunday the 13th of November at McIntyre Performing Arts Centre, Mohawk College. It starts at 6pm. For tickets, please contact Bharati Adhya: (905) 388 0079 or Anupam Bagchi: (905) 627 7496. I hope you enjoy the show!
As always, thanks for reading!
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