Discover India in Minneapolis Change City
Ganga: A Choreographic Odyssey
Katha Dance Theatre
Performing Arts
Fri, Jun 14

Katha Dance Theatre (KDT) is pleased to announce the world premiere of Ganga: A Choreographic Odyssey at E.M. Pearson TheatreWith this production, director/choreographer Rita Mustaphi is combining a film screening and live Kathak dance to create a unique cultural spectacle.

With this production, director/choreographer Rita Mustaphi is premiering a film screening and live Kathak dance combination to create a unique cultural spectacle. The dance film, Ganga to Mississippi, was filmed in both India and Minnesota. The Minnesota section was created in collaboration with Sharon Day, an Ojibwe leader and Indigenous activist, artist, and writer, and Jane Ramseyer Miller, former artistic director of One Voice Mixed Chorus. In Ganga: A Choreographic Odyssey, the brand-new live component, North Indian Kathak dance will be performed with a non-traditional South Indian Carnatic music accompaniment; the show's composers come from South Indian Carnatic and North Indian Hindustani classical music traditions. Set to live music by these and other acclaimed guest artists, the live portion will be performed by KDT's Company dancers and apprentices.

Ganga uses Kathak to convey the universal importance of protecting and conserving water sources. It portrays the mythological creation of the river Ganga (or Ganges), depicting Ganga as a nourishing river of life, a source of religious significance, but also as one of the world's most polluted rivers that needs saving from environmental destruction. Using the storytelling artform's trademark rhythmic footwork, pirouettes and gestural and facial expressiveness, Ganga emphasizes how the crucial role the Ganges plays to Asian Indians is similar to the role the Mississippi plays to Minnesotans––especially to indigenous communities. Using these mythological and real-life frameworks, Ganga calls for systemic change and urges audiences to take action against pollution.

A roster of acclaimed guest musicians accompanies KDT's Company on the live portion of the performance. They include Nirmala Rajasekar (vocals), Satyaprakash Mishra (tabla), Jayanta Banerjee (sitar), and Sriram N. Iyer (Mridangam) and percussion by Abhinav Sharma (MN).

June 14 - 15 at 7:30 pm

June 16 at 2 pm (ASL-interpreted)

Runtime: 90 minutes (plus 20 min. intermission)

E.M. Pearson Theatre

Concordia University

312 Hamline Ave. N.

St. Paul, MN 55104


General Admission: $35

Students & Seniors (65+): $20

This activity is made possible by the voters of Minnesota through a grant from the Minnesota State Arts Board and the Metropolitan Regional Arts Council, thanks to a legislative appropriation from the arts and cultural heritage fund. Ganga was supported by New Music USA. It is also made possible by the McKnight Foundation and the F.R. Bigelow Foundation.