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Bharatanatyam Dancer Geeta Chandran Presents IN SEARCH OF INFINITY at IHC, New Delhi

The performance is at 7pm on Saturday, May 21st, 2022 at the Stein Auditorium.

Bharatanatyam Dancer Geeta Chandran Presents IN SEARCH OF INFINITY at IHC, New Delhi

Bharatanatyam Dancer Geeta Chandran is premiering new works reflecting her internal dance journey through the Covid pandemic; "IN SEARCH OF INFINITY" will be performed at 7pm on Saturday, May 21st, 2022 at the Stein Auditorium, India Habitat Centre, Lodi Estate, New Delhi.

Geeta Chandran has used Hindi poet Jai Shankar Prasad-ji's Beeti Vibhavari Jaag Ri as a potent metaphor for the dark days of the pandemic that we need to put aside, even as we embrace with abundant caution - a better tomorrow!

The episode of Lord Krishna lifting the Govardhan Mountain to protect humanity becomes the context for Geeta to explore various nava-rasas in her dance. The dancer says that the pandemic made her plumb into the deepest recesses of her core to understand feelings of sorrow, wonder, disgust, and love. Verses in Sanskrit from the Sri Krishna Karna-amrita shlokam of Bilvamangala Swami become the libretto for this exploration in music and abhinaya.

Geeta then serenades the Goddess in Amba Nilambari, a grand Carnatic music composition of vaggyekara Shri Muthuswami Dikshithar. The Goddess with eyes of compassion who drapes the blue sky as her garment, becomes the beacon of compassion and sustenance.

The pandemic was also when Geeta's young grandson was growing up, leading to much familial joys. Capturing her maternal feelings, Geeta presents a beautiful lullaby wherein Ma Yashoda narrates the story of Rama while putting little Krishna to sleep. In an epiphanic moment in the story, when Sita is abducted by Ravana, the baby Krishna, transcending time and space, calls out to Lakshmana (his brother in his previous incarnation as Ram) to get his bow readied, since he wants to call out Ravana. This wonderful literary piece by Poet Surdas, presents the concept of a grand philosophy where avataras are linked in memory.

Geeta's concluding dance is a call for social tolerance of differences. In a piece written by Swami Annamacharya, Chief Priest of the Tirupati Balaji temple, the poet calls for samdrishti to human beings who may follow different sets of beliefs. All of humanity is one, says the poet, even as all the Gods are one!

Geeta Chandran says, "The pandemic affected all performing artists deeply. Since our income was solely dependent on performances, the drying up of performance opportunities for nearly two and a half years brought this community to a standstill and pushed them on a precipitous downward spiral.

I was no exception. My dance studio, which was, until then, daily humming with hyper creative activity and the bustle of students, went eerily silent. After a brief hiatus of about two weeks, I shook off my ennui and started reassessing my blessings. There I was with a slew of incomplete ideas that had to be brought to fruition; and I finally had the uninterrupted time to tackle those tasks. And so it was that yoga, dance, and my creative urge peaked during those long, long months that would have seemed interminable, but for my dance!

And what were the lessons I learned? I recognised that my art was replete and capable of feeding my soul and saving me from the downward spirals that so many around me were sliding down into! And I also realized that my internal landscape was robust enough to keep me busy, creatively occupied, feeling fulfilled and happy.

I reached the blissful Point Zero within myself, and I thank the pandemic for that. I truly tasted eternity.

And so here the pieces that I travelled with during the pandemic are being presented for the first time live...the compositions I worked on during those 30 months. With the support of stellar musicians K. Venkateswaran and Manohar Balatchandirane who were my pandemic co-travelers. Some of them were created for online performances, but here they will be viewed in flesh and blood..."

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