Experience Bharatanatyam in Confederation Park

Dr. Narthaki Nataraj performing Bharatanatyam dancing. Photo via the City of Kingston.

The City of Kingston is hosting world-renowned Bharatanatyam dancer Dr. Narthaki Nataraj for a special performance downtown later this month.

It’s time to find your dancing shoes, the City said, noting that this free performance will take place at Confederation Basin on Sunday, May 28, 2023, starting at 1 p.m.

“Bharatanatyam is one of the most renowned and sacred Indian classical dance forms that originated in the southern state of Tamil Nadu. Initially practiced as an offering in temples, Bharatanatyam today has adapted and evolved to be one of the most internationally prevalent performing arts,” said Samyuktha Punthambekar, Project Analyst with the Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion Office. “Interlaced with Bhava (Sanskrit word for expressions), Ragam (melody), and Talam (rhythm) this dance form is a unique way of expressing oneself through movement.”

In addition to being a prominent Bharatanatyam dancer, Dr. Narthaki Nataraj is also a scholar, orator, speaker of Tamil literature, and a transgender woman, the City said in a media release dated Monday, May 15, 2023. She has been the recipient of numerous awards including the Padma Shri Award, which is India’s fourth-highest civilian honour.

“We are extremely humbled and privileged to have the opportunity to host her for this performance and to have Kingstonians witness her exemplary dance at Confederation Basin,” Punthambekar expressed.

This event is an Intercultural Arts Festival preview presented by the City of Kingston’s Equity Diversity, and Inclusion Office, Arts and Culture Services, and Special Events.

While in town Dr. Narthaki Nataraj is also hosting a masterclass in partnership with the Kingston School of Dance to teach participants about Bharatanatyam, according to the release. She will also spend some time working with the Society for the promotion of Indian Classical Music and Culture Amongst Youth and Queen’s University through a joint partnership with the City of Kingston and Queen’s University.

The City said that, in case of rain, this event will take place in Memorial Hall, located across the street from City Hall.

To learn more about Dr. Narthaki Nataraj read her bio.

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