One had to debate hard and long on how to express through words the magic that Bharati brings to Canada. A stage spectacle has its own elements that you can observe and study. How, however, do you write about a show that encompasses an entire nations culture?
Bharati is the brainchild of Gashash Deshe, who was inspired to do the show after seeing a commercial on Israeli TV. He fell in love with Bollywood music and the cultures of India and decided to create the show. The show tells the story of Siddhartha (Sara Muthu Saravanan), an Indian-born engineer raised in the United States, who returns to India to work on the Ganga Cleaning Project. Away from India, its culture and its people, Siddhartha finds himself attracted to a mysterious Indian woman named Bharati (Bhavna Pani), who captures his attention through her beautiful dancing abilities. Bharati introduces Siddhartha to the wonders of India and its many individual cultures & traditions, allowing Siddhartha to understand who he truly is and experience the true meaning of love. Audiences are taken on this magical journey through The Narrator (Rahul Vohra), who explains the intricate details that are needed to understand the story.
Bharati has a cast comprised of dancers, actors, singers, acrobats and musicians, who pool together their talent to present the various different cultural elements of India. It is a true live performance with singing, music and dance all performed live in front of the audience.
Art in its Most Beautiful Form
From the get go, Bharati captures your attention and your curiosity. Audiences are immediately greeted with beautiful music, colour and energy-packed performances. The 70+ performers who are a part of this production bring everything they’ve got. The beauty lies in the fact that this is a true live performance. The songs are played live, the music is played live and of course, the dances are done live. Its art in its true, unedited form. Pure performance, highlighting the magical elements of a very diverse country.
The artists are just amazing. The singers never miss a note, the dancers are always in sync and the primary cast members are just brilliant. Bhavna Pani sets a new standard to dance, giving the audience an absolutely breathtaking performance in various different forms of dance. You simply cannot look away! Rahul Vohra’s narration is not a recital of a script. He has a conversation with the audience, sparking curiosity and grabbing ones attention. Sara Muthu Saravanan, Vetrithendral Thangasamy and Mangesh Nikam who play Siddhartha, Raj and Dom Raja respectively highlight the key elements of their characters, complimenting all the other performances on stage. What you get to see on stage is a group of artists who pour their heart and soul into their performance, creating both positive energy and excitement.
The use of familiar Indian music – used in both Bollywood and the Indian music industry – provides something for audiences to connect with immediately. The use of pop culture elements is something that audiences can recognize, shifting the focus back to the story and overall goal of the production. What is certainly an entertaining experience also becomes an educational and emotional experience as well.
A Spectacle of Colour
India is most known for its many colours, as seen in the celebration of Holi (the Festival of Colours), wedding ceremonies and within various cultural elements. Colour is a defining feature that this show captures beautifully. The costume designs are made with traditional Indian designs and colour combinations, with a variety used to capture different cultures across India. Whether its the traditional Sufi attire worn by Qawwal’s or the traditional salwar kameez of South India, the costumes are absolutely spot on and the various colours just amplify the essence of Indian culture. Colour is also given meaning through Rahul Vohra’s narration. For example, he explains the importance of red in Indian culture by taking the bride’s red dress as an example.
Colour is not just in the costumes. The entire production highlights the many colours of India. The intricately designed stage, the beautiful props and even the lighting. Each element brings to life on stage the magical colour-filled culture of India.
Bharati is a production that puts a spotlight on India in a way that can be understood by anybody. It is an introduction to those who don’t know about the nation and a refresher for those who have been away from it for a long time. Audiences are treated with beautiful colours, beautiful music and above all, beautiful performances. You will quite literally jump out of your seat at the end and dance to the music.
Don’t miss out on the opportunity to see this beautiful production!
Bharati plays the Sony Centre for the Performing Arts February 9 @ 2pm & 8pm and February 10 @ 2pm, followed by performances in Montreal at the Place des Arts from February 12th to the 17th.
To purchase tickets for the Toronto performances, visit www.sonycentre.ca or call 1-855-872-SONY (7669). To purchase tickets for Montreal performances, please visit www.pda.qc.ca or call 1-866-842-2112.