Dancer takes Sub-Continent Culture to Whangarei

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‘Beyond Bollywood’ Show by Monisha Kumar

Venkat Raman

Northlanders would have a unique opportunity of witnessing the cultural mix of the Indian Subcontinent as a talented young woman presents an evening of performing arts.

Monisha Kumar, an acclaimed choreographer, producer, director, teacher and a Master of fine arts will present ‘Beyond Bollywood,’ a kaleidoscope of colour, costumes and dances of India, bringing out the rich heritage that are several centuries old.

Organised by the Northland Indian Association, the Programme will be a part of Diwali celebrations on Saturday, October 12, 2019 at Forum North in Whangarei.

Variety in Arts

As well as classical dance forms such as Bharata Natyam, Odissi, Kathak and Manipuri, the two-hour programme, commencing at 1 pm, will include folk items such as Lavani (Maharashtra), Rajasthani Kathputli, Garba (Gujarat) and

Many Talents, one person-Monisha Kumarcontemporary dances featuring Acro, Jazz and Hindi films.

Among the participants will be students and guest performers of Monisha Kumar Dance Company based in Auckland.

Monisha said this year’s Programme will also include Hip Hop, Jazz Funk, saucy Cabaret and Belly Dancing, with a special dance as tribute to Christchurch put together with dialogues and narration by Hamilton based Youtuber Reneel Singh of ‘Ren and Raj’ fame.

“Their popular  comedy series consists of two intelligent idiots (Ren and Raj) taking on the satirical challenges of everyday drama. The duo recently won the Best Script, Best Director and Best Film Awards at ‘48 Hour Film Festival New Zealand’ in Hamilton,’ Monisha said.

Best Choice in Auckland

Slinky Aya performing the Acro

The Dance Company was the best choice last year at Auckland Live’s ‘Pick and Mix Programme’ held at the Auckland Town Hall and Bruce Mason Theatre and two house-full shows held at the Auckland Museum Diwali.

“In 2015, with a special mention in the ‘Encyclopaedia of New Zealand,’ Monisha Kumar Dance Company (formerly known as Monisha School of Dance), caught the eye of Pure New Zealand with a unique Maori Fusion Dance at Auckland City Diwali. It received a special visit from Hindi film actor Sidharth Malhotra in 2017 to see this dance,” a Press Release said.

Awards and Citations

The Dance Company has six nominations and two Awards with ‘Viva La Bollywood’ and ‘Kids Dance Showcase’ at Tempo New Zealand Dance Festival.

Its other credits include TAPAC (2009 and 2010), Colours of India at Tempo, New Zealand Dance Festival at Q Theatre (2012), Guest Performer at Tempo 10th Anniversary Gala and ‘Namaste Aotearoa’ for Tales of Tamaki at the Auckland Museum.

About Monisha Kumar

Established in 2006, the Monisha Kumar Dance Company aims to preserve Indian dance and heritage in New Zealand.

Popular with New Zealanders from all walks of life, the Company proves that creative people can successfully enhance and unite communities through cultural performances.

Monisha is Head of the Department of Dance at One Tree Hill College and has been teaching Dance as an academic University Entrance subject full time for the past 13 years.

With a forte for showbiz, she is also Co-Producer for Rhythm House Events, managing renowned shows and events such as Style Me and Miss Indianz.

Beyond Bollywood comprises original tracks composed by Dharmesh Parikh, Producer of Rhythm House Events.

NV Singh of TV2 Bollywood Dance Masala Fame and Instagram famous Acro and Circus trained Slinky Aya will join Monisha in presenting ‘Diwali 2019’ in Whangarei.

Tickets price at $15 including lunch are available Shiraz Indian Restaurant in Whangarei.

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What: Beyond Bollywood by Monisha Kumar Dance Company

Who: Northland Indian Association

Where: Forum North, Whangarei 

When: Saturday, October 12 from 1 pm

Tickets: $15


Photo Caption:

  1. Many Talents, one person-Monisha Kumar
  2. Monisha Kumar as Goddess Durga
  3. Slinky Aya performing the Acro

(Pictures Supplied)

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