Artists: Chitra Chandrasekhar Dasarathy
Kunti chose me....
I was asked to bring her to stage.
I started reading her story again.
My assumed familiarity with her turned out to be limited to the mere story of her life....
Granted a “boon” at a young age by which she could bear a child by any god. Kunti battles society, individuals and most of all, herself, through life.
Patriarchy and men decided the course of her life her father gives her away in adoption.
Durvasa grants her a “boon”, she is unable to enjoy conjugal harmony due to an accidental error in judgement by her husband. She realizes her folly at forcing Draupadi into a marriage to all five Pandavas but acquiesce to the proposal for the sake of her sons, Yudhisthira succumbs to the lure of gambling, Draupadi's disrobing by the Kauravas leaves her seething in anger yet powerless to halt the ignominy. Kunti's greatest personal loss and sorrow is the life she has foisted upon her firstborn child – Karna. He dies without being publicly acknowledged as her son. Why Kunti chose to remain silent about Karna through the course of the Mahabharata is, probably the greatest among the many enigmas in the epic. She does claim him as her son after his death. Having lived her life surrounded by a large clan and illustrious sons it is indeed ironic that her moment of assertion comes when she finally walks away from everything. This production traverses Kunti's life through her own experiences of the Mahabharata narrative. I have chosen to depict Kunti as the matriarch (though powerless) of the Pandavas, who is very human with her little foibles and yet comes across as this fascinating woman with whom men and especially women through all ages will identify. The textual material has been selected from the Mahabharata of Vyasa, Srimadbhagavatam and a Hindi poem Rasmirathi by Ramdhari Singh “Dinkar”.
Trained in Bharatanatyam from a very early age by her parents Prof CV Chandrasekhar and Smt. Jaya Chandrasekhar, Chitra Chandrasekhar Dasarathy has traveled long in her pursuit of expression and excellence. Her dance gives expression to her aesthetic sensibility as an artist of our times and her complete identification with the dance form. Chitra holds Master's degrees in dance and Sanskrit. Her involvement with other creative modes of expression like music and literature giver her dance and choreography a wider prespective. Chitra's precision in technique and sensitivity in presentation have been her strengths, much appreciated by her audiences. Her choreographic works apart from the traditional repertoire of Bharatanatyam include Geetagovinda, Samvada Hathor and I, Utsava, Vismaya Kuncha, Vagartha, Ratiranga and Kunti. Based in Bangalore Chitra continuous to perform, teach and choreograph.
Concept, Choreography and Performance: Chitra Chandrasekhar Dasarathy
Soundscape visualized by:Chitra Chandrasekhar Dasarathy