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Workshop With Noted Indian Dancer Is Rescheduled

August 31, 2001
Contact: Bill Giduz 704/894-2244 or bigiduz@davidson.edu

Sonal Mansingh
Noted Indian Dancer Sonal Mansingh

The workshop and presentation by Sonal Mansingh, one of India's foremost dancers, has been rescheduled for Monday, September 17. Her presentation will begin at 5 p.m. in the C. Shaw Smith 900 Room of the Alvarez College Union.

"Sonal," as she is known, is an unparalleled representative of the dance traditions of India. She has danced on stage since 1964, but has also won acclaim as a social activist, thinker, researcher, orator, choreographer, and teacher. She founded the Centre for Indian Classical Dances in 1977, and has trained many highly acclaimed young men and women in dance arts. She is the youngest recipient of the Padma Bhushan Award, which is presented to the country's top artists. Through seminars, round table discussions, writings, workshops, and lectures, she has shared her perceptions and concerns on a wide variety of issues. She was featured as keynote speaker at a recent seminar in Delhi on "Women, Environment and Culture."

A leading exponent of "Odissi," the ancient and traditional dance style of Orissa, she also has decades of training in Indian music and the dance forms "Bharata Natyam" and "Chhau." She has also choreographed original works based on Indian mythology and contemporary Indian social issues. Lately her work has veered towards issues concerning women and the environment.

As Sonal explained, "A dancer is not just a dancer. She is part of this environment. She does not exist in a vacuum. If an art form does not reflect the existing milieu, it stagnates. Dance can be the medium to present the viewpoint of those who often do not get a platform to speak."

For more information on Sonal Mansingh's appearance at Davidson, contact Professor Job Thomas, director of the South Asian Studies Program, at 704/894-2352.

Davidson is a highly selective independent liberal arts college for 1,600 students. Since its establishment in 1837, the college has graduated 23 Rhodes Scholars and is consistently ranked among the top liberal arts colleges in the country by U.S. News and World Report magazine. Davidson is currently engaged in "Let Learning Be Cherished," a $250 million campaign in support of student financial assistance, academic resources, and community life.

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