What is the sound of snow?

Wsnowangels2orking in the form of Kathak, one is constantly interpreting life through the sound of the bells…ghungroo…the hundreds of tiny bells wrapped meticulously around the ankles of all of us Kathak dancers. The bells and the feet combine to make a unique musical instrument that creates a dance of sound as well as movement.

What is the Raga for the icy cold winter, or the soft deep snow, which soars but also enfolds? These questions arose as I considered how to move into the piece.

Why does one embark on the journey of making a dance? I can only say: because it’s there. But actually it is the journey that is worth making, to reach the goal of a completed piece – culminating in a public performance in a cohesive design. It is a process of exploring and reaching deeper into the practice.

This journey began in Toronto just recently in a studio in downtown Toronto. One of many shared spaces which artists maintain for each other and the community. It felt like angels. Four dancers gathered for five days, joined by our musical collaborator Nick Storring. To say that Mr. Storring is a musical architect would be a mere hint to his talent as a composer. But the group embarked on the icy planes of his score to rediscover kathak on a slippery slope.

We began by listening. Dancers always want to move but I wanted us to discover the geometry through sound. Certainly each snowflake has a music all its own since it is a geometric shape. And from the sound came movement.

Are there angels in the snow? I think so.