Pooja Ru Prema’s ‘Endure’ in the Green River: A unique recreation of a 10,000-year-old Indian art form

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By Thursday, Jun 5 Arts & Entertainment
Peggy Reeves

Great Barrington — If it’s mystery you want, or magic – or a little bit of both – come to the Green River this weekend and next.

There’s to be another production by the Rogue Angel, Pooja Ru Prema, this time a solo performance in the water, at dusk, over cool stones and in the twilight shimmers.

She calls it “Endure,” and it’s a reprisal of the 10,000-year-old movement form, Kuttiyatam.

“The dance is 30 minutes long, and I’ll be in the water the whole time,” she explained, during a lunch at the Berkshire Coop. “This is nothing that people here have ever seen.”

The work that she has created involves a collage of vignettes of music – she’ll be playing the ukulele — dance and wordless storytelling.

“It will be a narrative of surreal images,” she went on. “The technique is ancient. In Sanskrit it is called abhinaya, and consists only of movements of the face and eyes, and of the hands, called mudra. It’s sort of like mime in a way.”

The vignettes portray the story “of a man and a woman falling in love, and then out of love. In the piece are the extreme archetypes of the masculine and the feminine.”

Around her legs, as she navigates the stream, will be a flotilla of paper boats.

“The paper boats represent – and carry – offerings to dead ones,” she said. “I love the frailty of the little boats. They offer a difference perspective on endurance.”

Pooja Ru has enlisted the assistance of Heather Fisch, Gabrielle Senza, Senta Reis, Kristin Grippo, Amy Webb, and Sarah Hardcastle in the production.

The performance takes place June 6 through 8 and June 13 through 16, at 7 p.m., along the Green River, at the corner of Seekonk Cross Road and West Plain Road. See the Berkshire Edge calendar listing for information and tickets.

See The Berkshire Edge Calendar for more information and tickets

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