New Directions In Dance: A Comment
I am so glad that, finally, after 17 years, someone has called cultural colonialism what it is. I wholeheartedly agree with Pattabhi Raman's statement at the Indo-European Dance Encounter, on the basis of my own experience in 1984. However, without making apologies for Georg Lechner, I would like to place a few issues in perspective.
First, I would like to address the so-called need for emptying oneself as described by Linke and Hoffman, as reported in Smti 200. (Now what does Rasa theory say about the satvik performer who is devoid/emptied of ego...?) [Linke called for the emptying of prior knowledge, experience and conditioning, not of ego—Editor]. After years of obediently trying to experience that futile approach, I am irked when those who teach choreography as I now do, demand that their students empty themselves. It is BS. We are what we have seen, felt and thought. Our bodies have been imprinted with the movements and body attitudes of those around us, whether we realise it consciously or not. (Check Susan Foster, in Writing Dancing, if you like this concept of movement as samskara. I love it.) I would say, that, in actuality, from my own obseivations of watching 35 years of Modern dance, there is constant repetition of movement ideas without acknowledgement (at the public relations level) of predecessors both within India and in Europe, Canada and the U.S.
Click here to read more ...