Sampad joins forces with MAC to present the UK premiere of a topical new performance by rising stars of dance and music.
Choreographers: Connor Scott and Vidya Patel
Composer: Shammi Pithia
Mentor: Kerry Nicholls
Lighting: Chris Cuthbert (UK), Gaurav Sharma (India)
Kathak artist Vidya Patel and Contemporary dancer Connor Scott, first crossed paths as finalists at BBC Young Dancer 2015. Connor went on to be crowned overall winner of the competition, while Birmingham-based Vidya triumphed in the South Asian category grand finals.
With guidance from Sampad, the two young talents have now come together for their first collaboration, which beautifully intertwines their respective styles to examine our sense of place and purpose within the world.
How do we deal with being bombarded with information that has been manipulated and find our way to the truth? How do we talk about issues that we’d rather not face?
Playful yet thought-provoking, About the Elephant reflects the search for clarity within our existence.
The duo are accompanied by skilled composer, producer and multi-instrumentalist, Shammi Pithia, who performs original live music for the performance.
Co-commissioned by Sampad South Asian Arts & Heritage, Serendipity Arts Trust and Midlands Arts Centre. Supported by Dance Hub Birmingham with in-kind support from Rambert Dance School, Dance City Newcastle, DanceXchange and Kerry Nicholls Dance.
“There is a certain chemistry between these two young dancers, which charges their refreshing choreography and compelling execution with a frisson we haven’t encountered lately in a mixed-form contemporary dance work. The Elephant in the Room received a standing ovation at Serendipity festival, Goa, and deservedly so.”
Chitra Sundaram, independent artist, dance writer, and lecturer in Theatre & Performance, Goldsmiths College, University of London.
About the artists
Rising stars Kathak artist Vidya Patel and Contemporary dancer Connor Scott first crossed paths in 2015 as finalists at the BBC Young Dancer competition at Sadler’s Wells.
Connor went on to be crowned overall winner of the competition and has since been training at the Rambert School of Ballet and Contemporary Dance, as well as touring and performing his own choreographic works.
Birmingham-based Vidya was the winner in the South Asian Category grand finals. An alumnus of Yuva Gati at the Centre for Advanced Dance Training led by a partnership between Sampad and DanceXchange, she trains under the guidance of leading Kathak exponent, Sujata Banerjee.
Shammi Pithia is continuing to build a solid name for himself as a skilled creative composer, producer and multi-instrumentalist – walking in the shadows of great artists such as Nitin Sawhney who has praised his work. Shammi’s album ‘COSMIC’ hit no.1 in the iTunes world music chart, as did the debut album ‘ShadowLines’ by his cool, young band FLUX.
Main image courtesy of Serendipity Arts Festival.
About the Elephant, UK Tour 2018:
Midlands Arts Centre (MAC) – UK Premiere
Alchemy Festival, Southbank Centre, London
Dance City, Newcastle
On sale soon.
Further dates to be announced soon!