She was traversing a path few dared possible - Indian Express, Feb '12

CREDITS

Artistic Direction: Savitha Sastry
Story and Script: AK Srikanth
Music: Rajkumar Bharathi
Lyrics: Niranjan Bharathi
Dance Choreography: Renjith Babu Choorakad & Savitha Sastry
Narration: Prasiddha RamaRao & Govind
Technical Direction: Victor Paulraj
Costume design: C A Joy
Design and Photographs: Aditya Sastry, Lost Arrow Studio, California
ORCHESTRA:
Vocals: Krithika Arvind & Srikanth
Keyboard: Vijayshankar
Mrdangam: Vijayaraghavan
Tabla and other percussion: Ganesh Rao
Veena: Subramanya Sharma
Sitar: Kishore
Violin: Yensone and group
Recording Studio: Resound, Chennai

SOUL CAGES

The Soul Cages is an artistic experience that captures the cycles of life and death as a journey, rather than an end in itself. This unique presentation is structured on the imagery and narrative of a story, told through the fluid grace of the classical Indian dance form of Bharathanatyam. This ballet speaks to the heart, thereby transcending the audience’s knowledge of Bharathanatyam, without ever compromising the aesthetics and classicism of this art form. At it’s core, the ‘Soul Cages’ brings to life, a deeply thought provoking philosophy by examining it through the eyes of mythological characters and ordinary people. Its strength lies in being able to project didactic theological values through the disarming simplicity of a child.

This intoxicating mélange of classical dance with a story line rooted in timelessness makes this presentation one of its kinds in the arena of dance, music, or theater. 'Soul Cages', the artistic extravaganza is elevated by a soundtrack so vivid that it virtually paints the visual palette with its aural resonance. The richness of the music is the creative genius of its composer Rajkumar Bharathi and his use of an orchestra of master performers, recorded to perfection in a studio favored by doyens of the film industry such as A.R. Rehman.

The ‘Soul Cages’ redefines not just one’s perception of the cycles of life and death, but also redefines the boundaries that tradition has placed on the expressiveness of Bharathanatyam. The presentation is driven by its story and concept, thus proving that Bharathanatyam is indeed the most versatile and expressive tool to bring any theme to life. The connoisseur of this dance form will be enthralled by the sophistication and nuances employed in the presentation, while the uninitiated will fall in love with the art itself. A musical, a dance performance, a narrative? ‘Soul Cages’ is vastly more than the sum of its parts.

PRESS

Savitha.. kept audiences hooked to the story of a small girl who reaches heaven and her experience when she meets the god of death - Hindustan Times Live

Savitha.. excelled in expressive gestures.. the presentation is superb by way of dance and mime... stunning clarity.. brilliant exposition - The Hindu

Her performances come across as straight-from-the-heart expressions - Times Of India

Savitha Sastry, mesmerised the audience as she showcased ‘Soul Cages’, ..a ballet that literally spoke to the heart. One of a kind in the arena of dance, music and theatre - Deccan Herald

Soul cages - A renaissance in Bharathanatyam' - The Sunday Standard

(Savitha) ..Redefines the boundaries that tradition has placed on the expressiveness of Bharathanatyam - The Indian Express

Savitha is redefining the dance form and its philosophy to suit the present times.- - Deccan Chronicle

Savitha Sastry leaves Chandigarh audience awestruck - Hindustan Times

Using the grammar of Bharathanatyam it's all about creating a new visual vocabulary and telling fresh, original stories.. knocking down pigeon holes as she breaks free.. in the vast expanse of traditional minus the baggage of restrictive thinking! - The Tribune

Marries the aesthetics of Bharathanatyam with the power of an intelligent and novel story-line - - Asian Age

Savitha Sastry's 'Soul Cages' opened to an electrifying response from the audience at Colombo. This Bharathanatyam presentation left the viewers spell bound by its rich tapestry of choreography, music, lighting, and a story that is novel and thought provoking. - Daily Mirror

An original and contemporary story that moves like a film, without ever losing the classicism of Bharathanatyam - - Dainik Bhaskar (Translated)

The story of a child was presented with such intensity that each member of the audience was left stunned Punjab Kesari, (Translated)

Amazing physicality..the resounding applause demonstrated the appreciation of the audience >across all barriers of race or nationality Dinamani (Translated)

AUDIENCE COMMENTS

“Brilliant performance. Mesmerizing from the start to finish. Would be glad to visit once again!”. Saatvik S, New Delhi

"What an innovative and original performance! The 54 minutes flew by.” – Danielle Lee, Kolkata

“A creative epic! To pack in 54 minutes such beauty, a blend of art, message, traditional classicism and innovation, is beyond imagination!. A message to the world.” – Dr & Mrs P R Krishnaswamy, Bengaluru

“Thanks for liberating Bharathanatyam from its cultural cages!” – S Manikantan, Bengaluru

“Exemplary! Tears rolled down my cheek!” – Kanya Shivadutt, Bengaluru

"Beautiful.. no words. I might be looking for a dance class after this!” – Yuki Kumoro, Mumbai

“Tagore experimented such things and the world accepted. Yes, the modern world will catch you too” Jyotirmoy Bhattacharjee, Mumbai

“I am speechless.” – Ashish V M, Bengaluru

“Frankly it was one of the best programs I have attended.” – Chitra V, Bengaluru

“Thank you very much for such a wonderful experience. I am shocked and thrilled by seeing this. I am also a Bharathanatyam dancer. My eyes filled with tears. Would love to experience more such shows!” – Shilpa Rajwad, Mumbai

“Breathtaking performance and a brilliant concept/choreography as well as costumes. Truly transported me into your world. Being a Bharathanatyam dancer myself, you truly are my inspiration!” – Jui Vaze, Mumbai

“Unconventional theme.. a new path” Santosh K Singh, Mumbai

“Beautiful.. no words. I might be looking for a dance class after this!” – Yuki Kumoro

“Fantastic! I knew nothing about the dance form, but I was enthralled” – Steve McDonald

“What a soul stirring performance!” – Shaila Narayan, Mumbai

“Stunning, fascinating, mind-blowing”! – Nita Mahwani, Mumbai

“Superb performance! Beautiful, elegant, meaningful. The best ever at NCPA! – Usha Gandeviwala, Mumbai

“A one-woman multiportrayal! I was taken to another plane and world. I welcome the different dimension added to an age-old enthralling world of Bharathanatyam. Looking forward to seeing Savitha again!!” – S.S.Sivakumar, Colombo

“Akki, I haven’t any words to tell you! Very, very, very beautiful!” – Isuri Upekha, Colombo

“Culturally valuable for all the people from all nations!” Ashoka Ekanayake, Kandy

“An excellent experience of my life and transformative!” Wg Cdr PSR Krishna, Chandigarh

“First time I have watched a show like this. I will never forget this show. Its awsum! I am that girl (19 years) who told you I want to start to learn Bharatnatyam!” – Monsoon, Chandigarh

“The theme, story telling, technique, more than perfect Abhinaya! Spell binding. – Usha Rachakonda, Hyderabad

“Excellent, spell binding, thought provoking performance. Keep going! Would love to see more of you!” – T. Preethi, Hyderabad

“Speechless!” – Ram Kumar, Hyderabad

PERFORMANCES

2014:

Nov 22, 2014 - Celebrate Bandra Festival, Band Stand Venue, Bandra, Mumbai

2013:

June 29, 2013 - Kumble Theater for Performing Arts, LIU, Brooklyn, USA

June 14, 2013 - Southern Theater, Minneapolis, USA.

Feb 16, 2013 - Tara Moti Hall, Surat

Feb 12, 2013 - Senate Hall, Gujarat University, Ahmedabad

Feb 8, 2013 - Anand Dighe Auditorium, Gandhi Nagar, Dombivli

Feb 6, 2013 - Dhurvangur Mangal Karyalay, Pune

2012:

Dec 14, 2012 - Epicenter, Gurgaon

Sept 19, 2012 - Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan, Bangalore

Sept 11, 2012 - Lakshmi Sundaram Hall, Madurai

Aug 18, 2012 - Music Academy, Chennai

Aug 4, 2012 - Birla Bhaskara Auditorium, Hyderabad

July 14, 2012 - Tagore Theater, Chandigarh

July 8, 2012 - Hindu Community Hall, Kandy

July 7, 2012 - Bishop's College Theater, Colombo

March 10, 2012 - NCPA Godrej Dance Theater, Mumbai

Feb 18, 2012 - Gyan Manch Auditorium, Kolkata

Feb 11, 2012 - Chowdiah Memorial Auditorium, Bangalore

Jan 28, 2012 - Premiere show at Kamani Auditorium, New Delhi


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