A musical dance performance about death and the celebration of life.
“Because, death is certain for the one who is born, and birth is certain for the one who dies. Therefore, you should not lament over the inevitable.” – Bhagavad Gita (influential Hindu scripture)
The way in which people observe the inevitable end, varies per culture, country and generation. How people deal with death says something about how they live. In some instances death might be intertwined with their everyday life, in other cases it is a topic that is consciously avoided. In True Life, Kalpanarts examines the relationship between life and its end, and the reverse.
Sources of inspiration are colourful and ancient funeral and memorial rituals such as the Mexican Day of the Dead (Día de los Muertos), the New Orleans jazz funerals and the holy cremations on the River Ganges. Furthermore, Hindu verses, the god Shiva and Indian philosophy, provide references for the celebration of life and mitigation of the underlying fear of death. The piece sources the personal experiences and beliefs of the performers with their different cultural backgrounds.
In the space where death defies the living, consoles and challenges, six dancers and a musician, Shishani Vranckx (vocals & guitar), give an expressive performance.
“Horizontal flips and other urban moves are accompanied by gracefully turning wrists and rhythmical footwork from the Kathak and Bharatanatyam dance styles. The result is a dynamic dance form that has theatrical expressiveness and is beautiful to look at.” (Trouw magazine)
Kalpanarts is the dance company of Kalpana Raghuraman (artistic director & choreographer) and Gysèle ter Berg (business director & artistic associate). At its origin it aims to address social and engaging topics. Kalpanarts is a contemporary dance company with a multi-ethnic cast and following. By bringing Indian dance forms together with urban and contemporary dance, Kalpanarts creates a dance language that transcends genres. Like a heartbeat, there is always a strong rhythmic element in the work. Characteristic is the use of footwork, hand gestures and facial expressions.
True Life is a production by Kalpanarts with subsidies from Fonds Podiumkunsten, Gemeente Den Haag, Amsterdam Fonds voor de Kunst, en VSB Fonds (Dance on Mute)
Photography campaign image Bowie Verschuuren
Choreography Kalpana Raghuraman
Concept Kalpana Raghuraman & Gysèle ter Berg
Business leader & artistic associate Gysèle ter Berg
Dancers Goda Žukauskaitė , Indu Panday, Kya Su, Laila Gozzi, Mitch Essers and Sooraj Subramaniam
Live Music Shishani Vranckx (vocals & guitar)
Music Composition Simone Giacomini
Costume Design Aziz Bekkaoui
Lighting Design and Decor Jeffrey Steenbergen
Dramaturgy Vincent Wijlhuizen
Head Production & Tour Manager Susanne Tuny
Assistent Tour Manager Milou Margaroli
Press & PR Anke Riesenkamp en Milou Margaroli
Campaign Manager Anke Riesenkamp
Social Media Freeke Carlier
PR & Community Gig Gamaggio
Project Manager Dance on Mute Anke Riesenkamp en Hadassa Smit
Graphic Design Serena Kloet
Photography & Video Bowie Verschuuren
Models Campaign Image Sooraj Subramaniam en Shishani Vranckx
Sales Gysèle ter Berg en Susanne Tuny
Dance on Mute
This performance is part of ‘Dance on Mute’: an initiative by Kalpanarts to make performances more accessible for people with a hearing impairment. Lights and the conversion of sound waves are methods used to allow sound to be experienced through other senses. A Dutch sign language interpreter (NGT) will be present during after-show talks with the choreographer.