Sharmila Biswas, the acclaimed Odissi dancer of the eastern metropolis, has produced an engrossing study of the woman's psyche in her latest dance production. This is a portraiture of the feminine mood reimagining three stock approaches from Indian literature. The first is from a social viewpoint of a mother, who lets loose her offspring into the future, by gradually cutting the apron strings binding them together. The second one is a royal model where the Patta Mahishi (the reigning empress) has to fall back on her baffling situation with her trusted husband foisting a new consort on the royal household, unannounced and unsolicited. The third one is a mythic woman who has been a quintessential lover all her life and is simply unable to come to terms with the permanent separation of her mon amour.
Antaranga Festival, the online show organized on April 23 by Sangeet Natak Akademi, featured the three highly innovative items of Sharmila over around 46 minutes. Another fascinating aspect was their being placed in three time horizons; future, present and past, in the reverse order.
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