SNOWANGELS, by Deepti Gupta, is a new 35-minute choreography that explores the sacred geometry of snow.It is inspired by the visual grandeur and sensuality of the snowscapes painted by Canadians Lawren Harris, Franklin Carmichael and Tom Thompson. The dance will explore the immigrant encounter with snow and the ongoing experience every Canadian has with this mysterious, aesthetically startling, enchanting but treacherous, phenomenon of nature.
Performed by an ensemble of four dancers the choreography explores movement, rhythm, expression and narrative based in the Kathak dance form. The original score by Nick Storring evokes the stillness and the fury of snow with elements of contemporary and classical Indian music.
SNOWANGELS premiered April 6 & 7, 2018 at the Market Hall Performing Arts Centre. It was then presented in Ottawa on April 15, 2018 at the Shenkman Arts Centre.
Performers and collaborators
Noah Damer is a dancer and an actor based in New York. He is a graduate of Hunter College where he majored in Dance, Theater and Media Studies. After graduation, he attended Merce Cunningham School of Modern Dance and recently Anart Foundation for Kathak Dance in Ahmedabad. To name a few, Noah has performed works by prolific companies and choreographers namely: Pearson Widrig Dance Theater, Larry Keigwin, and Charles Moulton of the movie Matrix Reloaded. As for Kathak, Noah’s initial training in New York has been with Parul Shah and Rachna Agarwal. He also has had the privilege of taking workshops with Padmavibhushan Smt. Kumudini Lakhia and Shri. Rajendra Gangani. For his advanced training in Kathak, he has studied under Gurus Shri Maulik Shah and Smt, Ishira Parikh in Ahmedabad.
Barkha Patel is an Indian Classical Kathak dancer and Artistic Director of Barkha Dance Company based in New York City. She began her formal training in Kathak at a very young age and has been practicing and performing the art form for more than two decades. Barkha has been trained in the Jaipur and Lucknow style of Kathak by her Guru, Rachna Sarang. Barkha completed her Master’s in Kathak Performing Arts from the Kalidasa Sanskrit University in Nagpur, India (2014-2016). To further deepen her understanding of other dance forms and complement her training in Kathak, Barkha is training in Bharatanatyam with Deepak Mazumdar and Hindustani rhythm with Pandit Divyang Vakil. www.barkhadance.com
Aasttha Khajuria is a dancer, choreographer and the owner of Root: School of Kathak in Edmonton, Alberta. Aasttha joined Manohar Performing Arts of Canada and participated in many dance productions and had the opportunity to tour across Canada with the Kathak and Bharatanatyam production, La Bayadère. Aasttha trained with Shoba Koser of the Pracheen Kala Kendra. She has completed her fourth year certification in Kathak from the Prayag Sangeet Samiti. She has also advanced her training with Savita Sharma from Upasana Dance Company and School in Toronto and with Janaki Patrik from The Kathak Ensemble & Friends in New York.
Parul Gupta’s training includes Kathak, Bharatha Natyam, Urban Dance, Ballet/Jazz and Hatha Yoga. Since 2008, she has been particularly focused on her study of Kathak, in both Canada and India. Her initial training has been under Sandhya Desai and Sudeshna Maulik. For her advanced training she has studied under the esteemed guidance of Pandit Jai Kishan Maharaj & Ruby Mishra, and the renowned Kumudini Lakhia. Parul is the artistic director of Parul Gupta Dance Works and Infusion Dance Studios, based in Toronto. Her choreographies are part of the Cirque du Soleil productions Love, Kooza & Totem.
Nick Storring is a Toronto-based composer and musician and winner of the Canadian Music Centre’s 2011 Toronto Emerging Composer Award. Recent commissions include a piece for Arraymusic, Montréal’s AKOUSMA Festival, a solo harp work funded by the Canadian Music Centre’s Norman Burgess Fund, and a solo piano work, Byland, for Eve Egoyan. Dance collaborations include original music for choreographers, notably Yvonne Ng (Magnetic Fields), and Deepti Gupta (The Lion’s Roar). www.nickstorring.ca