‘Malavika’ love story dances to Surrey as part of second Monsoon fest, in August

Second annual festival brought here by South Asian Arts Society

Dance drama “Malavika” is performed at Surrey Arts Centre on Aug. 13, as part of the second annual Monsoon Festival of Performing Arts.

Dance drama “Malavika” is performed at Surrey Arts Centre on Aug. 13, as part of the second annual Monsoon Festival of Performing Arts.

SURREY — The second annual Monsoon Festival of Performing Arts will again bring South Asian Arts Society-produced events to Surrey.

The festival runs for eight days, from Aug. 6 to 13, at venues in Vancouver and Surrey, with Malavika, a classical Hindi dance drama presented by the Nrityenakatha troupe, hitting the stage at Surrey Arts Centre on the festival’s closing day.

The inaugural festival in 2016 was organized to echo similar events in India, where festivals celebrate the arrival of the wet-and-windy season with dance, music, theatre, film and other performing arts.

This summer, organizers of the fledgling fest in Metro Vancouver are putting a “deliberate spotlight” on South Asian theatre.

“South Asian Canadians are the largest visible minority group in Canada, yet a simple scan of Vancouver’s performing arts community suggests that there are very few South Asian theatre professionals currently working in our industry,” states a message on the festival’s website, monsoonartsfest.ca.

The festival is unique, organizers say, “given that no other broadly-focused South Asian performing arts festival exists in Canada.”

In Surrey, Malavika is an adaptation of Indian poet Kalidasa’s first play, which was called Malavikagnimitram.

“Never before witnessed by the Greater Vancouver area, this mesmerizing love story shall transpire in a grand Hindi dance-theatre production through a unique combination of Kuchipudi and Garba/Raas dance forms,” festival producers say.

“Captivating Hindi dialogues are intertwined with grand dances, sets and costumes to transport the audience to an ancient mythological Indian kingdom, which is the setting for the story of King Agnimitra’s love for Malavika, who is an unheard of maid in the royal palace. It is said that Malavika was proficient in dance and music. The diverse plot is carried forward through intense battles, sorrow, comedy, and thrilling dance sequences set to a beautiful classical Hindi soundtrack, creating a movie on stage.”

The show is performed by Donna Abraham, Chandni Datta, Sherry Duggal, Manju Ganti, Vaibhav Kumar, Prakruti Lodhia, Alex Parappilly, Geordie Parappilly, Ashvini Sundaram, Aarathi Sunthoram, Hemang Shah, Vanita Srinivasa and Savita Srinivasa, with voice actors Vaibhav Kumar, Aaushi Rawat, Nishant Sharma, Hemang Shah, Sandeep Singh, Reeti Soni, Sobhana Srinivasa, Savita Srinivasa, Amit Srivastava, Nahid Sultana and Mansi Tandon.

Show tickets are available at tickets.surrey.ca and 604-501-5566, or visit Kamal’s Video Palace (#103 8268 120th St., Surrey).

Also during the festival, Vancouver’s York Theatre will be a stage for Burq Off!, an autobiographical coming-of-age comedy about a British Pakistani girl trying to find herself in two madly opposing worlds. The show stars Nadia P. Manzoor and runs on Aug. 11 and 12.

Also part of the festival are community-engagement events, including development workshops focusing on dramaturgy, playwriting, directing, acting, dancing and music.

“In future years,” festival organizers say, “audiences can look forward to a multidisciplinary arts festival inclusive of dance, music, visual, experimental and interdisciplinary arts, showcasing Canadian South Asian artists and talents, along with a few handpicked international productions.”

tom.zillich@surreynowleader.com

Just Posted

Councillor Doug Elford. (File photo: Amy Reid)
Elford to join Surrey Homelessness and Housing Society as a director

Fellow Safe Surrey Coalition Councillors Laurie Guerra, Mandeep Nagra and Allison Patton will be re-appointed to the board

(Photo: Tom Zytaruk)
Surrey council moves to reduce parking along rapid transit corridors

This also targets rental housing developments in Rapid Transit Areas

Big Splash water park is located in Tsawwassen. (submitted photo)
Big Splash reopens Canada Day with changes to keep the water park ‘safe for everyone’

Executive Hotels & Resorts has owned and operated the attraction since 2017

A cyclist stops traffic to allow a gaggle of geese cross the road. (Tino Fluckiger photo)
White Rock man asks motorists to be mindful of wildlife after close call

Impatient motorists drives into oncoming traffic

Elgin Park Secondary students rally for climate change outside of their South Surrey in 2019. (Nick Greenizan photo)
City of Surrey set to host online climate-action panel

June 23 Zoom event to include speakers, question-and-answer period

Maxwell Johnson is seen in Bella Bella, B.C., in an undated photo. The Indigenous man from British Columbia has filed complaints with the B.C. Human Rights Tribunal and the Canadian Human Rights Commission after he and his granddaughter were handcuffed when they tried to open a bank account. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO-Heiltsuk Nation, Damien Gillis, *MANDATORY CREDIT*
VIDEO: Chiefs join human rights case of Indigenous man handcuffed by police in B.C. bank

Maxwell Johnson said he wants change, not just words, from Vancouver police

Amy Kobelt and Tony Cruz have set their wedding date for February, hoping that more COVID-19 restrictions will have lifted. (The Macleans)
B.C. couples ‘gambling’ on whether COVID rules will let them dance at their wedding

Amy Kobelt and Tony Cruz pushed back their wedding in hopes of being able to celebrate it without the constraints of COVID-19

A plane is silhouetted as it takes off from Vancouver International Airport in Richmond, B.C., May 13, 2019. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Report calls for airlines to refund passengers for flights halted due to COVID-19

Conclusion: federal help should be on the condition airlines immediately refund Canadian travellers

Green party Leader Annamie Paul speaks during a news conference on Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Tuesday, June 15, 2021. Paul has survived another day of party strife after a planned ouster shifted course, leaving her with a tenuous grip on power ahead of a likely federal election this year. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Justin Tang
Green Leader Annamie Paul blasts ‘racist,’ ‘sexist’ party execs who sought ouster

Fallout has continued, with two of the federal council’s members resigning

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry says re-opening B.C.’s border to the U.S. ‘is not in our best interest’ right now. (B.C. Government photo)
Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry (B.C. Government photo)
B.C. records 113 new COVID-19 cases Wednesday, four deaths

Vaccination of young people rising quickly, near 75 per cent

Russian President Vladimir Putin, left, and U.S President Joe Biden shake hands during their meeting at the ‘Villa la Grange’ in Geneva, Switzerland in Geneva, Switzerland, Wednesday, June 16, 2021. (AP Photo/Alexander Zemlianichenko, Pool)
Biden says meeting with Putin not a ‘kumbaya moment’

But U.S. president asserted Russian leader is interested in improved relations, averting a Cold War

Vancouver Giants will return to the ice on Oct. 8, hosting the Prince George Cougars at Langley Events Centre. (Special to Langley Advance Times)
Vancouver Giants will renew division rivalry with Cougars when season resumes in October

First game on Langley Events Centre home ice since February of last year

For more than a year, Rene Doyharcabal and a small group of neighbours in Langley’s Brookswood neighbourhood have been going out every evening to show support for first responders by honking horns and banging pots and drums. Now, a neighbour has filed a noise complaint. (Langley Advance Times file)
Noise complaint filed against nightly show of support for health care workers in B.C. city

Langley Township contacted group to advise of complaint, but no immediate action is expected

Raeya Evie Duncan was the 100th baby born at Chilliwack General Hospital for the month of May. She is seen here with her parents Alysha Williams and Andrew Duncan on June 12, 2021. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress)
Baby boom in Chilliwack as record number of infants born at CGH in May

‘COVID babies are coming out,’ says dad of 100th baby born at Chilliwack General Hospital last month

Most Read