I DANCE.
I Dance to touch the intangible.
I dAnce to feel, process, dive deep, sit in discomfort and to let go.
I daNce to hide in imaginary realms.
I danCe to be seen.
I dancE to dream.
I DaNcE to freedom.
I dance to ME.
I dance.

REFLECTION

Laura Lee for Nox Photography

Dance was never something I actively considered pursuing in my growing years, but as I reflect back, I find that it was always present in my life. My earliest childhood sensations around dance are of pure joy and abandon. In the moments that I danced, I could access a part of me that allowed for complete self acceptance around my sexual identity and gender expression.

Some of my earliest memories that clearly stay with me to this day are around visuals and sounds of the dance we now call bharatanatyam. There was a sensory overload in its experience. The mridangam made my heart dance. I was instantly attracted to the vibrant red on palms and feet painted in alta and the heady fragrance of jasmine gajras. All of these sensations inform my personal and dance aesthetic even today and creep up in my creative processes.

Formal dance training came much later in my life. In experiencing its formality, I have occupied space (many times simultaneously) as student of dance, performer, interpreter and now dance maker. After having trained for over a decade in a form steeped in a history of erasure, marginalization and appropriation, I feel compelled to deeply consider the implications of my positioning as a privileged body occupying this space.

Many questions, curiosities, disconnections and negotiations later, today I find myself standing in its essence as a loud and proud queer person, slowly finding my voice in its gift. As I continue to learn and to unlearn, as I make peace with its complexity and find new ways to be present with it, I find myself drawn to making work that celebrates explicit erotic sensuality through my queer body and experience, taking power away from privileged conditioning of shame, taboo and exclusion around the queer body through heteronormative lenses of “morality”, “decency” and “dignity”.

Laura Lee for Nox Photography
Today I find immense joy in giving voice to that little gay boy, who grew up with internalized trauma around his sexual orientation and living all of his fantasies through this dance that he held so close and finding ways to reconnect with the pure joy and abandon he felt.
Laura Lee for Nox Photography

UPCOMING EVENTS

Sadhana - An Evening of Bharatanatyam

SADHANA

An Evening of Bharatanatyam

Time Will Tell Arts Society and Caravan World Rhythms presents Sujit Vaidya in SADHANA : An evening of Bharatanatyam with live music.
 
Choreography and nattuvangam:
A. Lakshmanaswamy
Mridangam: Curtis Andrews
Vocals: Ramya Kapadia
Flute: Raman Kalyan
April 25th 730 pm Vancouver Playhouse, Vancouver 
April 26th 730 pm Heritage Playhouse, Gibsons
April 27th 730pm Evergreen Theatre, Powell River

Hello!

I have been programmed by Time Will Tell Arts Society and Caravan World Rhythms, to present an evening of Bharatanatyam, on Thursday April 25th in Vancouver, Friday April 26th in Gibsons and Saturday, April 27th in Powell River.

The brief was to present “traditional” work. I’m calling it SADHANA (spiritual practice, discipline required to attain a goal), which also happens to be my mom’s name.

As some of you may know, I have not presented “traditional” choreographies in a while, seven years to be precise. I’ve been focused on learning and unlearning histories of the dance form I practice, creative processes and making dances. I’m not entirely sure that I know how to define “traditional” work anymore.

For Sadhana, an evening of Bharatanatyam, I have chosen to go back to sourcing from somatic intelligence, choreographies buried deep in muscle memory, allowing dances that sit in my body to re-emerge with agency and experience. I have chosen to celebrate form and some of my favourite compositions, in the dances I will present and in the music from the 4 person live musical ensemble.

These are choreographies of my dance teacher, A.Lakshamanaswamy, who will accompany the dance as nattuvanar or orchestra conductor. The rest of the musical ensemble consists of Curtis Andrews on mridangam, Ramya Kapadia on vocals and Raman Kalyan on flute. I urge you to come support these brilliant musicians.

It would be very meaningful to have you in our audience, in supporting work that comes from a specificity that is not part of mainstream dance. I find it important to represent the form in its rich tradition of “alive-ness”, when dance and live music dialogue.

Hope to see some of you there.

Could I also request that you share this information on your platforms to amplify our voice if you are able? I’m attaching a poster and a reel to forward/ share.

Warmly,
Sujit
www.sujitvaidya.ca

PAST EVENTS

Sujit Vaidya
Photo: Josh Romine | Hair & Makeup Styling: Mabeth Lugtu | Creative Styling: Sujit Vaidya

Breathe In The Fragrance

Roundhouse Community Arts & Recreation Centre

June 23, 2023 – One performance only!

A queer fantasy celebrating deeply embedded memories awakened by the Indian Jasmine flower, mogra.

Choreography: A. Lakshman
Additional Choreography: Sujit Vaidya
Dancers: 
              Sujit Vaidya
               Kiruthika Rathnaswami
               Malavika Santosh
 
Musicians: 
                 Curtis Andrews (Mridangam)
                 Ramya Kapadia (Vocal)
                 Arno Kamolika (Nattuvangam)

INDIAN SUMMER FESTIVAL

OFF CENTRE

An exploration of queer identity through dance.

Tuesday, July 12 @ 8:00 pm – 10:00 pm

$5 – $45