Kathakaar: The Spinning Storyteller

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The multicultural history of India comes to life through the lens of Indian dance form of kathak. With live musicians and exciting visuals, kathakaar, dancer/storyteller, Jin Won uses danced storytelling, and expressive and rhythmic dance to tell the story of kathak from it’s ancient storytelling roots to the royal courts. This multidimensional and interactive performance shares how the beauty the emerges from cultures coming together. From stories of Hindu gods and goddesses to the role of arithmetics in Indian dance and music, Kathakaar shares the rich history and depth of centuries old traditions in fun and accessible manner.

Kathakaar: The Spinning Storyteller a family and youth program by Pradhanica Dance and Music Ensemble. Led by artistic director Jin Won, Pradhanica explores the intersections of dance, music and rhythm.

Kathakaar is adaptable to varying needs and settings. Comprised of seasoned teaching artists, formal performances and assemblies can also be coupled with dance and/or music workshops, a signature food and art event, and more. Residencies can be customized based on the needs of the organization.

Pradhanica Dance and Music Company. Led by Artistic Director and Choreographer Jin Won, Pradhanica explores the sonic and narrative possibilities of rhythm through dance and music. While the foundation of Pradhanica’s explorations come from the Indian classical dance form of Kathak and North Indian classical music, the company’s works expand beyond Indian classical arts. Other works by Pradhanica include Rasa (premiered at Princeton Festival), Taraan (premiered at Drive East Festival), and Jhankaar.

Jin Won is described as “exuberant” by the New York Times. South Korean artist Won is an accomplished kathak dancer, and tabla player, and ambassador for Indian classical arts. Her love of Indian arts led her to live in India for over 15 years, where she trained in tabla under Pandit Divyang Vakil and in Kathak under Shrimati Shubha Desai before joining the Taalim School. While equally adept at traditional and contemporary presentations of kathak and tabla, Won’s latest endeavours are explorations of rhythm as a unifier across cultural expressions and led her to found Pradhanica Dance and Music, Her unconventional journey has been the subject of two documentaries – one by the Korean Broadcasting Service and a second on the NJTV program “State of the Arts”.

Mike Lukshis, a native resident of New Jersey, has dedicated his life to absorbing and spreading the art of tabla. For the last 10 years, Mike has been studying and living with Pt. Divyang Vakil in a Gurukul style of training. He is a full time teacher and manager of the Taalim School of Indian Music, serving diverse communities around NYC and NJ. While intensely pursuing the tradition of solo tabla playing, he also performs as an accompanist to Indian classical music and dance. Since 2012, he is the only non-Indian member of the world-renowned tabla ensemble Talavya. He has performed at venues and events all over the United States and abroad such as Lincoln Center, PASIC 2013, Ciudad de Las Ideas, Lake Eden Arts Festival, Sarah Lawrence College, Symphony Space, and more.