forest choreographed by wendy jehlen created and performed by Amelia Beard, Danielle Divito, Wendy Jehlen, Pradhuman Nayak, DeAnna Pellecchia, Mila Thigpen, Terra Weaver
"At one point (DeAnna Pellecchia and Pradhuman Nayak) appear to be feral cats, which stalk suspensefully and then battle it out in an exciting capoeira duet. An intriguing mound, made (by the same dancers) one draped on top of another, grows gorgeously into a tall tree." -Lisa Jo Sagolla, BACKSTAGE
FORESTtakes us into the archetypal world of the forest, the jungle. Throughout the world, the forest is seen as a place of transformational magic. Heroes of the world's epics must pass through the forest in order to fully realize themselves. The forest is a world of elicit trysts, of confrontations between opposing forces. ANIKAI Dance takes you into this world at its roots, draws you into its branches, and sends you flying up through the canopy.
FOREST is built on the structure of a classical Bharata Natyam performance, beginning with an invocation to ANIKAI's "god" of beginnings, of transformation and of the space between - the butterfly. We take you through the forest, through our alarippu of a single tree, jathiswaram of a grove of trees, our shabdam, and varnum, until we come to the sanctum sanctorum of the padam. Then, finally, in our tillana, we take you on a dizzying ride beginning at the forest floor and ending above the tree tops.
FOREST premiered in Boston at the BU Dance Theater and in New York City at Dance Theater Workshop. It toured India in 2011.