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Archive for October 23rd, 2013

International Conference (17th-21st Dec): Indian Dance – Theatre Between Tradition & Contemporaneity

Posted by ElJay Arem (IMC OnAir) on October 23, 2013

IUGTE is the non-governmental non-profit organization founded in 2000 (@ Facebook).

The organization was established with the purpose of exploring the bridge between world theatre traditions and contemporary performing arts, developing international programmes, promoting multicultural dialogue, supporting the freedom of creative expression and tolerance through the acquaintance with the diversity of world traditions.

Our staff is a collaborative community of experts in the field of performing arts, social science, culture and arts management aiming to achieve the highest level of excellence in organizational work, research, teaching and creative endeavors.

Our programmes provide opportunities for intellectual, practical and experiential knowledge of the performing arts, a practical working knowledge of the craft, discipline, the critical thinking it requires, and a deep appreciation for the collaborative art of theatre.

Since 2000 IUGTE has carried out over fifty international performing arts conferences, training courses and collaboration projects in Austria, Canada, Czech Republic, Great Britain, Hungary, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta, Russia, Slovenia, Sweden and Ukraine. We have collaborated with over 150 teachers from different countries, and our programmes have been attended by over 1,500 international students.

We appreciate your visit to our website and hope that you will contact us with questions you may have about our programs!

IUGTE International Theatre Village (annual)


International Conference Theatre Between Tradition & Contemporaneity

  • Performing Arts Training Today
  • Performing Arts Management Today
  • Fundraising for Arts and Cultural Organizations


date: December 17 – 21, 2013
place: Leitring bei Leibnitz, Austria

Performers, performing arts educators, teachers, artists, playwrights, theatre critics, journalists, theatre researchers, arts managers, arts administrators, arts management educators and consultants, arts entrepreneurs, fundraisers, producers, arts agents and talent managers from all over the world.

The Conference offers a wonderful opportunity to meet potential collaborators and creative partners from different countries!

The conference working language is English.


Practical workshops, masterclasses, works-in-progress, performances, presentations, lectures, discussions:

Please follow the news! The conference programme is being regularly updated.


To apply for participation, candidates should send a cover letter briefly describing professional activity to

The participation fee is 450 EUR (early-bird reduced registration fee – if payment is made before October 25th);
550 EUR (if payment is made after October 25th). The fee covers participation in all events of the programme.

Group Registration Discounts
We offer a discounted conference registration rate for groups of three or more people (300 EUR per person).

Student Registration Discounts
There is a discounted conference registration rate for students (150 EUR per person – student identity document must be presented).

For student groups of three or more people there is a special discounted registration rate (135 EUR per person).


To register for the Conference programme as an Observer, candidates should send a cover letter briefly describing professional activity to

There are three payment options for Observers:

  1. Observation of the whole programme of the Conference. The fee – 150 EUR.
  2. Two-day programme attendance. The fee – 95 EUR.
  3. One-day programme attendance. The fee – 65 EUR.


IUGTE can help participants to organize accommodation and meals.


The official arrival day is Tuesday, December 17th from 13:00.
The day of departure is Saturday, December 21st after breakfast (before 9:00).

December 17th:
From 13:00 – Group arrival and check-in.
17:45 – IUGTE Programme Coordinator meets the group. Short tour around Retzhof Castle.
18:00-19:00 – Dinner.
19:00-20:30 – IUGTE Conference opening, first meeting and introduction to the programme.

December 18th, 19th and 20th:
Conference programme: practical workshops, presentations, works-in-progress, lectures and discussions. The conference programme will run full day with breaks for breakfast (8:00-9:00), lunch (12:00:13:00) and dinner (18:00-19:00). The registered conference delegates receive the detailed daily schedule.

December 21st:
7:30-9:00 – Breakfast
9:00 – Check-out & departure.

(Source: 10/23/2013 –


Invented Traditions –  What Makes Indian Dance ‘Indian’? 

Video presentation with Gitanjali Kolanad (choreographer, teacher, dance researcher – Canada) and Brandy Leary (Founder and Artistic Director of Anandam Dancetheatre – Canada).

Gitanjali Kolanad was involved in the practice, performance, and teaching of bharata natyam for more than to  forty years. She performed in major cities in Europe, America and India. She collaborated with noted artists: director Phillip Zarrilli, video/installation artist Ray Langenbach, poet Judith Kroll, among others. Her work incorporated folk and ritual forms of dance, theatre and martial art forms from South India. Gitanjali’s collection of short stories,“Sleeping with Movie Stars”, was published in 2011 by Penguin India. She has written on  aspects of Indian dance for major Indian publications. Now, she teaches the Indian martial art form of kalaripayat in Toronto.

Brandy Leary uses the body as a means of philosophical enquiry, creating contemporary dancetheatre that is at once visceral and transcendent. Brandy holds a BA Honours in Theatre with a specialization in Direction and Asian Theatre from York University. She has lived between Canada and India for the past 14 years training, collaborating and creating in the traditional Indian performing languages of Seraikella and Mayurbhanj Chhau (dance), Kalarippayattu (martial art) and Rope Mallakhamb (aerial rope).

Brandy Leary founded Anandam Dancetheatre Productions ( in 2002 and is its Artistic Director. She has been the resident choreographer at the Bata Shoe Museum in Toronto since 2010.

This will be presented as a lecture with video clips of Leary’s recent works, ‘Confluence’ and ‘Precipice’ contrasted with her performance of a traditional item from the chauu repertoire.

In 1970, when I first went from Canada to study bharata natyam in India, the dance was described as a revival of a two thousand year old tradition of temple dance going back to the Natya Shastra. This story remains prevalent and is the most widely accepted version of the history of bharata natyam, the descriptor ‘two thousand year old dance form’ appearing again and again in publicity material, reviews, grant applications, etc to this day, despite lack of historical veracity.

This story gives audiences with no specialist knowledge of the dance form reasons to suspend  aesthetic judgments. Diasporic practitioners and audiences are deeply attached to the notion of ‘ancient’ and ‘tradition’ in relation to Indian dance, and find it hard to explain or value the art form without reference to its age or adherence to a ‘tradition’.

What makes contemporary Indian dance ‘Indian’ dance? I look at this question through the work of chauu dancer Brandy Leary, who creates contemporary work that doesn’t look ‘Indian’ in any superficial way, and is not buttressed by claims of ‘authenticity’, but nevertheless embodies ‘Indian’ concepts of dance and theatre, relationships of dancer to audience, and conforms to ‘Indian’ aesthetic principles that go back to the Natya Shastra.

(Source: 10/23/2013 –


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