“We need more exposure” | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, April 28, 2017 / LAST MODIFIED: 12:00 AM, April 28, 2017

International Dance Day

“We need more exposure”

…Tamanna Rahman

After its grand inauguration on April 23, the weeklong International Dance Day festivities are currently underway. The opening day saw performances of noted dancers, including leading Manipuri dance exponent Tamanna Rahman, who is the founder of Nrityam as well as a lecturer of the Department of Dance at Dhaka University. In a recent conversation with The Daily Star, the artiste speaks of the art form, her current ventures, and more. Excerpts:

“I performed during the inaugural ceremony of International Dance Day festival on April 23, to a contemporary patriotic song called 'Jole Otho Bangladesh'. The event was lively and the performance went smoothly. I have also recently performed a Manipuri number for a programme on ATN Bangla, which will go on air on April 29. Currently we are preparing for performances commemorating Tagore's birth anniversary on May 6, and will record dances to five Tagore songs for BTV soon. We are still in talks with other television channels, and will begin rehearsals soon after a concrete plan is laid out. The dance numbers will be done in the Rabindrik style, infused with Manipuri dance. “

“Although dance is a primary cultural component, very little respect is given towards this art form. Our performances usually take place on the stage, and television channels usually hesitate in covering such events. Dance programmes are also scarce on TV, and that must be changed. We need more exposure if we are to preserve and promote this sacred art form. We also don't receive much support when it comes to sponsorships, and even when we perform at government programmes the fees we receive are a mere pittance. Patronisation from the government, corporations, and the people is necessary if we are to take steps forward.”

“How can dance be expected to flow through generations when today's youth are pressured into sedentary lifestyles? The demand to succeed academically and professionally without respite is limiting the nurturing of their minds, bodies, and souls' needs. This will result in the loss of humanity in the long run, and it is difficult to identify clear solutions against this epidemic. It would be a good start if schools can incorporate the arts into their core curriculum and place equal emphasis like other subjects.” 

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