Ascension Indian dance spectacular to tour festivals

Ascension. Photo by Simon Richardson.
Ascension. Photo by Simon Richardson.

The spectacle of Indian dance inspired by Dante’s Paradiso and the nine Hindu planets of Navagraha is to appear at Kendal’s Mintfest as part of a UK tour.

London-based South Asian Dance production company Akademi are performing Ascension.

It is an outdoor Indian dance, inspired by Dante’s ascension to heaven as described in Paradiso, the third part of Dante’s poem Divine Comedy, while drawing on Hindu astrology and the nine planets of Navagraha.

The free performance is as intimate as it is powerful, drawing on classical Indian dances Kathak and Odissi, fused with the imagery behind Dante’s Paradiso and Mars – the fifth planet of Navgraha, and ruler of the warriors.

Audiences will be guided through a journey as dancers perform in and among the audience members.

Each performance will adapt to the surroundings creating a distinct experience each time.

Choreographed by Manuela Benini, Ascension features Khavita Kaur and Kali Chandrasegaram, with music by Ash Madni, and lasts about 20 minutes.

The production will tour Cumbria and Manchester as part of a first look at a larger scale outdoor project that will eventually combine all nine of Navagraha’s planets and is planned to tour in 2016.

Tour dates

August 30/ 31, (part of Mintfest), Abbot Hall Park, Kirkland, Kendal, Cumbria

September 6, part of Urban Moves International Dance Festival, Cathedral Gardens, Manchester.

All events are free with no tickets needed.

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