By Charuta Fadnis
Northwest Asian Weekly
“Yours Mallika,” Pratidhwani’s flagship dance show for 2015 played to a sold-out audience of 800 on April 10th and 11th at the Meydenbauer Center in Bellevue. Pratidhwani, which means “echo” in Sanskrit, is a volunteer run not-for-profit 501c(3) organization dedicated to promoting South Asian arts and artists in the Greater Seattle area.
Inspired by two disparate, divergent literary and musical masterpieces, “Yours Mallika” took the audience on a voyage through the centuries using various dance forms – from Bharatnatyam to Flamenco and Kathak to Waltz. Involving a cast and crew of over 120 volunteers, the show was over four months in the making and involved intricate period costumes and elaborate historical sets.
The story starts in 1959, when the eponymous Mallika, separated from her lover Samir, not just by distance but by religion and familial pressure, is encouraged by him to explore her innermost feelings and face her fears by writing a story. And so begins her journey of self-discovery as she spins a tale of intrigue, rivalry, passion, love and loss set in 1857 in a little Himalayan village in India against a backdrop of the impending revolt against the British.
For over ten years since its inception in 2004, Pratidhwani has been providing a platform for artists and performers to share their art with a diverse audience. In addition to its four wings – dance, drama, light music and classical music – Pratidhwani also has a youth board aimed at promoting young talent. Each year, Pratidhwani produces 8-10 shows and promotes approximately 150 artists. (end)
Upcoming shows and collaborations include:
“Storywallahs,” a coproduction with KUOW and Tasveer on May 3rd and “Meri Awaaz Suno,” a singing talent competition on June 6th.
More information and links for tickets can be found on Pratidhwani’s website (www.pratidhwani.org) and facebook page.
Charuta Fadnis can be reached at email@example.com.