Esme's Journey with MDT
Esme Boyce is no stranger to Maya’s ethos. She has worked with Kavitha and the company for over 4 years. This time spent with Maya has deepened her understanding and love for the style of expression.Esme created and presented a work for Release 5.0 (2016), she also performed with Maya in New York in a work titled ‘Soul Rivers’, this was choreographed by renowned artist, Janis Brenner. Esme has had introductory Bharathanatyam training with Kavitha which has familiarised her with the body and movement style.
In the past year, Esme has worked closely with Kavitha to create the female archetype of women betrayed by men in power. The theme was explored through the character of Joan of Arc, a French saint. The exploration has evolved to become a part of the full-length work, PANCHA “When the flames blaze the caged body, I surrender my soul, I AM….”
Esme Boyce (Co-Choreographer and Character Development-Joan) - Biography
Esmé Boyce is a choreographer, director, and dancer based in Brookyln, NY. She received a BFA in Dance from The Juilliard School. She focuses primarily on creating inter‑disciplinary pieces with a core team of artists. Esmé has presented work at 92nd Street Y, Fridays at Noon Series, Dixon Place, Lincoln Center, The Dogwood Performing Arts Center, Brooklyn Academy of Music, Fishman Space, Judson Church, Baryshnikov Arts Center, Howard Gilman Performance Space, and Center for Performance Research. As a dancer, Esmé has had the pleasure of working with Janis Brenner & Dancers, Catherine Tharin Dance, Yara Travieso, Jin Ju Song-Begin, Charlotte Bydwell, Dana Katz, Carlye Eckert, Katherine Partington, Douglas Dunn, Marta Renzi and Cori Kresge.
In the collaborative work of Esmé Boyce Dance, music, sculptural form, image and dance are developed in tandem. While movement is typically the point of origin for a new piece, musical concepts feed back into choreographic decisions, which in turn inform imagery and tone. Almost always interdisciplinary, the group's performances have paired a classical emphasis on rigor and technical accomplishment with a rejection of a purist approach to genre and methodology.
Peni's Journey with MDT
Peni worked with Maya first through the production "Anwesha", the quest" with music composer Rahayu Suppangah from Solo, Indonesia. She provided vocals for the production. Pancha is the first time for Peni to be working with AD Kavitha and the company directly. Her deep understanding of the Asian dance practice and the value of sound theatre work has been very significant to the development of the work.
This is the first time for Peni to be also performing in a production apart from being a musician and a lead vocalist as she is currently in the production. 'Setan Jawa' music composed by Rahayu Suppangah. Peni's high spirited quality and her sensitivity towards the theme and the depth of the real facts of incidences that happened in the lives of the 2 iconic women so as to push boundaries with openness.
Peni Candra Rini, Solo.Indonesia (Indonesian Music Composer/Song Writer, Singer (traditional and contemporary) - Biography
Peni Candra Rini is an Indonesian composer, song writer and singer (traditional & contemporary). She is also a lecturer in the department of Karawitan at the Indonesian Institute of Arts (Institut Seni Indonesia – ISI ) in Surakarta, Central Java. This talented young singer has very rare talent as a “sindhen” (a female solo singer who sing with a Gamelan). Peni keeps showings, especially to the youth that it’s very important to keep the inheritance of our nation by performing from one festival to another festival. Peni received the best young sindhen in Surakarta in the event “Seleksi Pesindhen Remaja Se Karisidenan Surakarta” 19-20 March 2005 in Pendapi gedhe Balaikota Surakarta, She received the silver medal for the best vocal performance at the Spring Friendship Art Festival in Pyong Yang North Korea. Peni has participated in many festivals and collaborated with different artists from all over the world.
She has recorded four albums: Bramara (2010), Sekar (2012), Bhumi (2015) and Daughter of the Ocean (2016), As a vocalist on the album "Anane Ono" and "Opera Jawa" by Rahayu Supanggah. She is currently involved in the silent film with gamelan, Setan Jawa.
Catch Peni Past Works:
Nirmala's Journey with MDT
Nirmala Seshadri is the dramaturge for the second edition of PANCHA she has also lent her expertise in the development of the character of Sita with Kavitha. She is a multidisciplinary artist, choreographer, movement educator, researcher and writer. She played a significant role in the creation of the first edition of PANCHA-Murmurs in the Wind in 2016. Her guidance brought the character of Gandhari to life in the production.
Currently, Nirmala works with Kavitha to bring forth deeper insights to Bharathanatyam among the dancers at MDT. With her training, the dancers continue working with resident choreographers/trainers Kavitha and Shahrin to push the boundaries of the contemporary body.
Nirmala Seshadri (Dramaturg and Character Development-Sita) - Biography
Nirmala Seshadri is a multidisciplinary artist, choreographer, movement educator, researcher and writer.A recipient of various awards including the National Arts Council’s Young Artist Award (Singapore), Singar Mani (Mumbai) and Balasaraswati Endowment Award (Chennai), Nirmala has served on the Board of the National Arts Council, Arts Resource Panel, and Arts and Culture Strategic Review Committee in Singapore. She has also served as Chairperson for Singapore Dance Week 2010 & 2011 organized by the World Dance Alliance Singapore. In 2014, Nirmala conceived and curated the International Conference on Bharatanatyam in Singapore. She is the founder & artistic director of N Dance & Yoga.Nirmala graduated with a Masters degree in Dance Anthropology (with distinction) from the University of Roehampton, London.
After 20 years of training and practice in Yoga, she also began devising a wellness and creativity-focused mind-body technique - ANTARIKA which she now imparts in the sphere of education.She presents workshops regularly at schools in Singapore and at the Nanyang Academy of Fine Arts, where she conducts a range of modules on Bharatanatyam, Contemporary Asian choreography and Asian Mind-Body Practice.Having received her early training in Bharatanatyam in Singapore, she went on to spend over two decades learning, teaching, creating and performing in India. She began her training in Bharatanatyam under Santha Bhaskar in Singapore. She later received training in India from Guru Mahalingam Pillai, Jayanthi Subramaniam, Padma Bhushan C.V. Chandrasekhar, Indira Kadambi and in abhinaya from Padma Bhushan Kalanidhi Narayanan. She has also studied dance theory under the guidance of scholar and musicologist TS Parthasarathy and learnt Nattuvangam (vocal percussion) from Karaikudi Krishnamurthy.
Izdi's Journey with MDT
Mohammed Izdi works for the first time with Maya Dance Theatre. His sensitivity towards human values and his ardent interest to collaborate with a dance company presented an opportunity for Kavitha , AD of MDT to invite Izdi to work in this project. Izdi’s interest in the expression of MDT was another big draw factor for him to design the visuals for the work. His visuals are used as publicity collaterals and as a set design for the production.
As explained by Izdi about his visuals, “ The figure in the illustration is the amalgam of all the characters in the play – Sita, Joan and the Angi, Fire with the flame. I was inspired by the concept of the Holy Trinity – 3 of them are considered as one in essence, nature, power, action, and will. They are different yet exist as one entity so they cannot be separate from one another. This alludes to the scene where the Fire with the Flame is together with Sita and Joan and embracing the fire together (hence the blue coloured fire; blue fire = control/calm fire). The figure is rather androgynous as I was inspired by the image of Shahrin as Sita and also Tilda Swinton's portrayal of the angel Gabriel in the movie Constantine starring Keanu Reeves. The ring and the chestbox are included as they represent each of the women’s past: The ring for Sita, as her marriage symbol and the treasure box with Joan’s hair that she sacrificed to prepare for her journey.”
Muhammad Izdi (Visual Artist) - Biography
Muhammad Izdi is a visual artist with an ever-evolving practice. A graphic designer by training, he graduated from Singapore Polytechnic in 2007, and cut his teeth as the lead designer for contemporary art institution, the Singapore Art Museum (SAM). From 2010 to 2013, as SAM’s Senior Designer, he conceptualized and executed its visual communications across the gamut of branding, marketing and advertising. He oversaw the design of exhibition brochures, catalogues and advertisements, amongst other collaterals, as well as larger- scale onsite exhibition graphics for the Museum’s galleries and external venues.
Together with two other independent artists, Izdi founded Knuckles & Notch, a Risograph press in Singapore. In his capacity as the company’s business director, he pushes for the exploration and development of Risograph practice, intending to revive it from an outmoded form of printing into a new, exciting visual language for creatives. Knuckles & Notch has worked with both local and international artists such as Kristal Melson (Singapore), Tell Your Children (Singapore), GIFriends (New York) and Jane Stephanny (New York/Malaysia) and institutions such as SP Design School, Singapore Polytechnic and LASALLE College of the Arts. Knuckles & Notch also participated in various art book fairs such as Singapore Art Book Fair, Basel Art Book Fair, New York Art Book and Tokyo Art Book Fair. 2014 marked an important period for Izdi as he decided to pursue his interest in art. In his efforts to evolve from a designer to an artist, Izdi has taken part in two international exhibitions as part of the Singapour en France - le Festival; Art Garden (2015) at Gare Saint Sauveur, Lille and Open Sea (2015) at Musée d’art contemporain de Lyon. Izdi has also participated in the Dena Foundation Artist Residency Program in Paris where he stayed for three months.
Kailin's Journey with MDT
A talented composer and musician, Kailin has worked with Maya Dance Theatre (MDT) for both local and overseas productions such as SG50 NYC Arts Festival (2014, presented at La MaMa theatre) and Mahalango III Bali Arts Festival (2015). He has always been an ardent supporter of MDT.
Kailin’s original music and live performance gave new dimension to 'Gravitate', an new work created by Kavitha Krishnan. In 2016, he collaborated as music director and composer for the first installation of the PANCHA series, (PANCHA-Murmurs in the Wind). He worked with Kavitha to imagine the scenes and create the live score for the production.
Kailin is back to work on the second edition of the Pancha series, (PANCHA-When the flames blaze the caged body, I surrender my soul, I Am ...) as a violinist.
Kailin Yong (Violin) - Biography
Known to many as the Fiddler for Peace, Kailin believes firmly in the power of music and love to affect profound and positive changes in the world. He was trained in Austria at the Musikhochschule Wien and was the recipient of the Daniel Pearl Memorial Violin in 2004 for his efforts in building cultural bridges through music.
In 2013, Kailin returned to his native Singapore after spending twenty years living, traveling and playing in Europe and America. Since then, he has been actively sharing his gift as a music director and composer with theatre and dance groups like Checkpoint Theatre, Flamenco Sin Fronteras, Maya Dance Theatre and In Source Theatre, just to name a few. He is also the founding member of several pan-cultural musical groups including the Kailin Yong Peace Project, NuMundo, Y Quartet, the Lost Tribe of Pulau Gypsy, the Qilin Group and the PLUS Trio.Kailin currently teaches at Lasalle College Of The Arts, School Of The Arts (SOTA) and Dulwich College.
History of Emily Hill
Known for decades as Osborne House and now a home to arts groups, its early history had stumped most experts.
It has been suggested by some, such as heritage blogger Jerome Lim, that the two-storey structure at 11, Upper Wilkie Road, had been developed in the late 19th century by Syed Hashim Kassim, the Sultan of Siak, a place in Indonesia.
Read More on Emily Hill:
Muhammad Izdi is a visual artist with an ever-evolving practice. A graphic designer by training, he graduated from Singapore Polytechnic in 2007, and cut his teeth as
the lead designer for contemporary art institution, the Singapore Art Museum (SAM). From 2010 to 2013, as SAM’s Senior Designer, he conceptualized and executed its visual communications across the gamut of branding, marketing and advertising. He oversaw the design of exhibition brochures, catalogues and advertisements, amongst other collaterals, as well as larger- scale onsite exhibition graphics for the Museum’s galleries and external venues.
Muhammad Izdi is a visual artist with an ever-evolving practice. A graphic designer by training, he graduated from S