Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Review: India Jazz Suites

My review of India Jazz Suites: Kathak Meets Tap, the ongoing collaboration between Pandit Chitresh Das and Jason Samuels Smith is now online at The Arts Fuse.

Though the idioms of kathak and tap dance have radically different origins on separate continents, both share features that make a meeting between these two intellectually curious virtuosos particularly fruitful: both men are exemplars of traditions known for sophisticated percussive footwork, improvisation, and an intimate relationship with a rich musical tradition that also emphasizes improvisation. Just as tap dance is connected to American jazz, kathak is rooted in the classical Hindustani music of northern India.

Disclosure: I studied kathak, the classical dance of northern India and Pakistan, for a number of years at Chhandika, the Boston-affiliate of Pandit Das' Chhandam school.

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