On 21 September 2017, there was an Indian classical dance program “Moods & Emotions through Indian Kathak Dance” organized at CUHK campus. This program was initiated by the Centre of Urban History, Culture and Media (CUHCM) of the Institute of Future Cities (IOFC), and co-organized by the Multiculturalism in Action Project (MIA). It included a seminar, a music workshop, and a dance workshop on kathak, a 2000-year-old dance from northern India. It was a great honour and privilege to have Ms. Sunayana Hazarilal and her team to be the guest speakers of this program. Ms. Hazarilal is an internationally acclaimed kathak dancer who has conducted kathak workshops in various countries including the United States, Italy, and Germany. In 2011, Ms. Hazarilal was awarded the Padma Shri (the fourth highest civilian award in India) by the Government of India.
2017年9月21日，香港中文大學校園裡舉行了一系列關於卡塔克舞的講座、音樂工作坊和舞蹈工作坊。是次活動由未來城市研究所 (IOFC) 城市歷史、文化與傳媒中心（CUHCM）策劃，並由多元文化行動計劃（MIA）協辦。卡塔克舞是一種擁有二千年歷史的北印度古典舞。我們很榮幸邀請到Sunayana Hazarilal 女士和她的音樂團隊作為活動的嘉賓講者。Hazarilal女士是國際知名的卡塔克舞者，多年來在世界各地如美國、意大利和德國等地舉辦過不少卡塔克舞工作坊。在2011年，Hazarilal女士獲印度政府頒發第四級公民榮譽獎 —— 蓮花士勛章。
The seminar, “Kathak: History, Gender, and National Identity”, was moderated by Prof. Andre Elias, an ethnomusicologist at the Hong Kong Baptist University. Ms. Hazarilal gave a talk to introduce the development of kathak, as well as notions of gender and identity in the dance.
講座“卡塔克：歷史，性別，與國家身份認同” 由香港浸會大學民族音樂學者Andre Elias教授主持。Hazarilal女士除了介紹卡塔克舞的發展，亦討論關於卡塔克舞中的性別和身份認同等議題。
Ms. Hazarilal demonstrating some basic movements in kathak and their meanings
The kathak music workshop saw the music team: sitar player Ms. Prajakta, tabla player Mr. Kalinath Mishra, and vocalist Mr. Somanth Mishra displaying their musical talents. The workshop was moderated by Prof. Jeffrey Levenberg, an ethnomusicologist at the Music Department of The Chinese University of Hong Kong. During the workshop, participants learnt about the Indian music rhythm known as “tintal”. It is made up of 16 symmetrical beats upon which a performance can be laid. The audience were also treated to a mesmerizing session of soothing beats and hypnotic strumming of the sitar, creating a calming atmosphere in the room. The vibes of a fast paced Hong Kong society was dissipated momentarily as everyone in the room closed their eyes to enjoy the soothing tunes.
在卡塔克音樂工作坊中，音樂團隊展示了他們的非凡才華。團隊成員包括西塔琴演奏家Prajakta女士、塔布拉手鼓演奏家Kalinath Mishra先生和歌唱家Somanth Mishra先生。工作坊由香港中文大學音樂系民族音樂學者Jeffrey Levenberg教授主持。工作坊講解了印度音樂中的節奏 tintal，它以十六拍為一個循環，是卡塔克舞音樂的基本節奏。在西塔琴迷人的樂聲中，大家的思緒飄到窗外的山林。現場每個人都合上眼，放下心頭的顧慮，靜靜地欣賞優美的西塔琴聲。
Mr. Mishra teaching a participant how to play the tabla
Ms. Prajakta on the sita
At the kathak dance workshop, participants were at their feet stamping to the beats of the tabla. Ms. Hazarilal set the standards high, introducing to participants first the slow beats, which gradually culminated to faster and faster beats. Participants had a good workout and had fun coordinating the swaying of their hands with their feet stamping to the rhythms. It was a really enjoyable workshop with participants laughing and trying their best to keep up with the beats. Ma. Hazarilal and her team were the most encouraging teachers, shouting praises and encouragements to participants throughout the time. The three workshops ended in the early evening. To show our appreciation to the guests, a vegetarian dinner was held at the new vegetarian restaurant on campus, hosted by Prof. Siumi Maria Tam, Director of the CUHCM and the MIA.
Ms. Hazarilal teaching the basic steps of kathak
Art and performance is a very good way for one to have deeper insights into the ethos of another culture. Throughout these sessions, participants gained a whole new insight on kathak, they learned how to appreciate other cultural artforms from an intercultural perspective. Indeed, it is a celebration and attest to the vibrant diversity and cultures of Hong Kong.
Thank you all for your participation!
Reporter: Amy Phua
Translator: Connie Lee