Permalink

The Festival vibe!

There is nothing quite like the thrill of performing on a stage in front of an audience. Unless of course that stage is outdoors! It is so special to be able to perform at an outdoor venue or festival where often the audience are within touching distance of you performing and the atmosphere is upbeat and full of energy. 
The ambiance of a music festival sparks a light inside anyone watching. The energy pulsating through the crowd is almost tangible and unites everyone there in perfect harmony. If you've ever been to a festival, you will know what we mean. A good festival experience will consist of meeting people you never normally would, listening to the sweet melodies of music you've never heard before and making wonderful memories you can keep with you for the rest of your life.

At Sonia Sabri Company we have been lucky enough to perform at a variety of festivals around the world and come rain or shine, alfresco events are unique and offer a fantastic experience both for the performers and the audience. All the hard work and hours of rehearsal are worth it when you catch a glimpse of members of the audience enthralled and captivated by your performance.  






Our outdoor events often incorporate the basics of Kathak, which give audiences an insight into this joyous and rhythmic Indian dance. Footwork, spins, rhythmic choreographies and the art of storytelling through mime, gesture and facial expressions are often explored accompanied by live music on a variety of instruments! The beat of the drums is infectious and it is wonderful to see young and old clapping along or tapping their own toes in time to the music. The melodies seem to hang in the air and the special bells worn around the dancers feet add an ethereal note to the performance. It always feels so special to be able to introduce the energy of Kathak to a new audience.
At SSCo music and dancing go hand and hand. Without the music there would be no dancing. The infectious melodies of Kathak encourage audience members to feel and move to the music, it is very much a two-way relationship with the performer and audience feeding off each others’ energy.

Not all performances take place in glorious sunshine, however, and evening performances or performances at dusk can also add a haunting undertone or highlight the passion in an individual or group display. The atmosphere can be even more intense and uplifting as the sun slowly sets and the music echoes through the darkness.



The feeling of looking out from the stage and seeing a crowd of people all having a wonderful time is amazing and one of the best feelings in the world.  We are looking forward to new and exciting performances this summer that will hopefully thrill and entertain no matter what the weather!


If you are interested in catching a live performance by Sonia Sabri Company or would like more information on booking SSCo please email
info@ssco.org.ukor call 01216223135.

Comments

Permalink

EXCITING NEWS

NEW TEAM MEMBER AT SSCO

We all here at Sonia Sabri Company would like to express a warm welcome to our newest member of the team.


-->
Lisa has lived in Birmingham for the last 20 years having fallen in love with the city whilst studying at the University of Birmingham. With a degree in English literature and over twenty years experience working in advertising research and event coordination, Lisa brings her love of the arts and organisational skills to her role at Sonia Sabri Company. As one of the leading contemporary South Asian dance and music companies in the UK, Lisa’s role at SSCo is multi faceted and varied with a focus on marketing, administration, audience development, social media and digital engagement. She is very much looking forward to immersing herself in the role and being a part of current creative productions as well as exciting new projects in the pipeline!







 
Comments

The arrival of spring brings with it a new, vibrant dance class:

Permalink
Asian Folk Dance classes with Sonia Sabri

With a few glorious days of sunshine last week, stunning blossom trees in full bloom and front gardens and grass verges bursting with colour and new growth it really felt like spring was round the corner, bringing with it a sense of hope, excitement and fresh opportunities. April showers may well have returned with a vengeance but this hasn’t dampened the sense of optimism that seemed to have been ushered in alongside the blue skies and gentle golden sunshine of spring. A week into my new job here at Sonia Sabri Company, I am beginning to learn some of the intricacies of the poetic and rhythmic enchantment of Kathak dance. As I sit at my desk I can hear the gentle beat of lyrical music and the tapping and jingling of bells as Sonia uses just movement and expression to tell her complex stories. Kathak is an integral part of SSCo from classical to more urban interpretation and its grace and beauty is evident throughout the company. But to capture the true excitement and joy of spring and new beginnings I am thrilled that the company is piloting a new class for dance enthusiasts, South Asian Folk.  Folk dances are performed to express joy and festivity and are traditionally an integral part of any celebration. Unlike the complexity of Kathak, folk dances are relatively simple with minimum steps and movement but full of energy and vitality. Folk dance is vibrant, colourful and full of joy and laughter and perfectly reflects the hope that spring can bring, a burst of colour after a winter of grey skies, cold weather and bare fields and landscapes. 
If you are interested in learning more about the four week pilot of Asian Folk Dance classes please take a look at our website:
or give us a call on 0121 622 3135


Comments

A Review of Virago

Permalink





A Review of Virago 


I was interested to learn that Virago had been the result of some extensive research. As a woman, I was grateful to hear this. I've always been interested in listening to other women's stories and the fact that SSCo had clearly listened to other women and had attempted to understand them, made the performance more real for me. I was informed that Virago was not an attempt to victimise women but instead to explore the various elements of a female and indeed, an individual. Some of these themes and elements include the repression and entrapment of women, mental health issues including eating disorders and anxiety.








Sonia's dance art, Kathak was fast paced, energetic and had moments of real pain and power. I was transfixed by the haunting music from the company's musical director, Sarvar Sabri. There is some dialogue scattered throughout which serves to move the story on and add a bit of pathos to the narrative. The majority of the music playing had me feeling as if I had just wandered into a dream, which not only made the performance more exciting but also left me thinking about it long after it had finished.




The dancing itself also had elements of ballet and this translated into the clear ups and downs of life. The best thing about this is that you can tell that it is Sonia's personal style and that it reflects modern society and the experiences she has gone through both as a dancer and as a woman. Personally, I took the fast paced nature of Virago to reflect the frenetic energy of modern life and how hard it is to gain perspective as a person and how hard it is to gain a sense of freedom and voice as a woman.


By far my favourite part of the performance was the imagery that it conjured up. The build up of the broken female, her attempt to overcome the tragedies enforced on her and how these two things correlate in the world of reality and the world of psychedelic fantasy. Sonia's attempt to explore the minds and experiences of women everywhere more than pays off and the dedication and energy shown should be replicated in every other dance show out there.

Virago dates:

The Old Rep Theatre, Birmingham, 15th February, 7.30pm;
Swindon Dance, Swindon, 23rd March, 7.30pm.

Photographs by Simon Richardson

Writer and Reviewer: Abigail Remmer




Comments

KATHAK CAMP IS BACK!

Permalink

FOR KATHAK STUDENTS...

That's right! The successful Kathak Camp is back again by popular demand! This time around it has been our students that have asked for this to return as they were so impressed with the last Kathak intensive!



Venue: Baithak House, 202 Moseley Street, Digbeth, Birmingham B12 0RT

Dates: Sat 16th  December – Sun 17th December 2017, 10am-5pm


What is it?
Sonia Sabri Company is offering a fantastic opportunity for Kathak students to immerse themselves into a weekend intensive and inspirational course led by world-renowned artist Sonia Sabri. 

Kathak is profoundly based on the complex foundation of rhythm and percussive creativity. To execute these with a wider rhythmic palette and expressive depth, one must be able to appreciate, analyse and illustrate the Kathak vocabulary.

Sessions will focus on the artform technique, development of vocabulary, creation and execution including recitation, and artform appreciation.



Image by Simon Richardson


Sonia Sabri is an award-winning artist creating and performing world-class productions around the globe. She is a current, leading performing artist who performs regularly and offers a unique insightful learning experience, and a repertoire relevant to today’s arts scene. 

Sonia is also an award-winning dedicated teacher with a wealth of experience and knowledge.

Her generous training and guidance enables students to reach their potential and support those with a desire of developing into the next generation of artists. So come along and immerse yourself on what promises to be an adrenaline boosting experience!


Who is it for?
Kathak Camp is suitable for Kathak students:
  • with a minimum of 2 years training
  • who are dedicated to the study and practice of Kathy
  • who enjoy learning in a fun and focused environment.



Image by Simon Richardson


Additional benefits?
In addition to the above: an insight into technique, style and performance, Kathak Camp offers you some of the following:
  • Professional development
  • Personal development
  • Accredited qualification towards Duke of Edinburgh
  • Accredited qualification towards Arts Award
  • Potential opportunity to perform as part of company's annual showcase Akaar
  • Potential opportunity to join Kathakaars (music and dance performance company for aspiring artists)
  • Potential recruitment as part of Sonia Sabri Company 
  • Opportunity to connect with other dance students and emerging artists.



Where and When?
Baithak House, 202 Moseley Street, Digbeth, Birmingham. B12 0RT
Saturday 16thand Sunday 17th December 10-5pm!


What is the cost?
£60 per person


Enrolment Details
To receive an enrolment form, or for any further queries please contact: Melanie Lewis, Projects Manager. 
Email: mel@ssco.org.uk  or Tel: 0121 622 3135
Deadline to enrol is 5pm Monday 4th December 2017.


Comments

SONIA SABRI COMPANY'S KATHAK AND TABLA CLASSES CAPTURE THE FUN OF INDIAN MUSIC AND DANCE

Permalink


Bored with the standard gym workout class and searching for something more creative and exciting than Tai Chi in the park, I came across Sonia Sabri's Kathak and Tabla classes. I wanted something that was going to engage me, excite me and keep me entertained long after. Sonia Sabri Company host a variety of different classes for all age groups, covering the beauty and energy of Indian music and dance.

I was excited to attend my first class, ready to learn more about the intricacies of Kathak dance. Kathak is a North Indian dance style that is known for its graceful and fluid movements and its rhythmic footwork. This particular dance is specialised and honed by internationally acclaimed artist, teacher and choreographer, Sonia Sabri, who not only shares her skills and knowledge in class but adds a new perspective to an already inspirational art.

Sonia Sabri Company capture the grace, fluidity and fun of Kathak dance. 

I was also excited to learn about Tabla Percussion as well, which is also offered alongside the Kathak dance class. The Tabla is a culmination of two drums, a treble and a bass that are played whilst you are on the floor. This is just as exciting and immersive as Kathak with the group class syllabus being spread between learning basic strokes, speed control and rhythm from Sarvar Sabri, who is a well- renowned Tabla master. 

The immersive nature of the Tabla is taught by world-renowned maestro, Sarvar Sabri. 

The best thing about these sessions is that you don't even need to have any experience in either art, as they are taught in a friendly and open manner. However, what you will come away with is a new found knowledge of Kathak and Tabla and maybe even an urge to try it again. The classes are held in Digbeth, Birmingham, only a short 10 minute walk away from the bustling centre of Birmingham's Bullring and Grand Central Station. 

If you would like to try a session and are interesting in having some fun and learning a new art, then contact Melanie Lewis at 0121 622 3135 or get in touch by email at mel@ssco.org.uk. 

Comments

'CRAFTS OF THE PUNJAB'

Permalink
'CRAFTS OF THE PUNJAB'

There was a real buzz on Saturday 21st October at the Herbert Art Gallery and Museum. We had been invited by the venue to help celebrate the 'Crafts of the Punjab' exhibition. 

The day was so busy and full of joy and fun! We felt like we didn't stop! There was Punjabi dance and music performances, Rangoli art workshops, storytellers, and so much more!




And on top of that, the participants that took part in the activities were really engaged in what they were doing, and the audiences were totally mesmerised by the performances!

It was great to see so much enthusiasm! Thank you to the Herbert Art Gallery and Museum!

(Image by Mel Lewis)







Comments

LOK VIRSA: BEYOND BORDERS, IS BACK!

Permalink

LOK VIRSA: BEYOND BORDERS, IS BACK!

I remember the first time I ever saw ‘Lok Virsa’ and became involved in some way with the project was in April 2012 as part of the Alchemy Festival, Southbank Centre. 

‘Lok Virsa’ means the ‘heritage of the people.’ It is this wonderful simplicity that Sonia Sabri Company celebrates by focussing on the beautiful arts and crafts of the Indian subcontinent.


                                                                               


(Image by Sonia Sabri Company)

India and Pakistan share a rich heritage in their customs and traditions, which unites the people of these places, despite political differences. It is this heritage that has transmitted itself to different parts of the world and is now being shared right here in the UK.

The main things that I recollect from the ‘Lok Virsa’ day in 2012 were the vibrant colours of the costumes, the beautiful sounds of the folk songs, the simplicity of the folk dances, the buzz of the audiences, the chitter chatter of workshop participants and the interaction of spectators as they watched the performances. It was a truly amazing and joyful day!

                                                                                                                 

(Image by Pulkit Sharma)

Five years on and ‘Lok Virsa’ still remains to intrigue audiences all over the UK and you’ll be pleased to know that the festival will next be seen at Swindon Dance, 5th Nov, 12pm-5pm.


https://www.swindondance.org.uk/event/lok-virsa-beyond-borders/










Comments

KATHAK AND TABLA CLASSES

Permalink

DID YOU KNOW...?

Working in Marketing for Sonia Sabri Company can be full of surprises. Some days are spent working on a laptop completing all of the admin jobs, and other days are spent 'out and about' meeting staff of other venues to make sure that everything's looking organised for the next event. 

Take for instance; Saturday 26th August, 2017. This was my first time since joining the company (from the beginning of August) in which I spent the entire day not only helping out at the Lok Virsa (South Asian arts and crafts event), but also in watching such amazing performances and workshops!

The day was full of so much energy and the artists all looked wonderful in their colourful clothes!

There were so many routines that the dancers had learnt. It must have taken them hours of practise, and they must have given up so much of their own time to rehearse for such an exciting event.



It makes you think how and where this all begins!

In fact it all starts right here! Yes, here in the studio space of Sonia Sabri Company in Digbeth, Birmingham. 

These fantastic dancers that displayed their skills have and continue to develop their Kathak dance skills through weekly classes. Some have gone into these sessions with very little experience, and some with no experience at all!

So, it doesn't matter if you have danced for years or have no idea of dance. These weekly classes are open to everyone!

Not only that, but there's also classes on offer for tabla too! Again, no experience is necessary!

So, why not come along and join in and have fun?

If you'd like to find out more about these exciting classes, then check out the link below and enrol today!

And who knows, YOU maybe performing in the next Sonia Sabri Company event too!

http://www.ssco.org.uk/learning/learning/classes.html

(Image above by Sonia Sabri Company)








Comments

Night of Festivals South Asia 2017

Permalink


SONIA SABRI COMPANY SET TO ASTONISH AND AMAZE AUDIENCES
AT NIGHT OF FESTIVALS SOUTH ASIA

Saturday 19th August 

1.15 - 2pm



As part of Leicester's festivities marking the 70th Anniversary of India and Pakistan's Independence, Sonia Sabri Company have been invited to perform at Night of Festivals South Asia 14-19th August. 

This is part of a six day festival that celebrates the spirit of South Asia, exploring Indian and Pakistani heritage; past, present and future. 

This spectacular event sees Sonia Sabri Company perform an energetic and vibrant array of folk, classical and funky dance styles.

Join us and other artists on an exciting journey in which the rich and diverse flavours of South Asia will be revealed through not only dance but also through music, visual arts, exhibitions, crafts, food, conversations and much, much more...

This is a FREE event, so don't miss your chance to watch us in action and experience the joys of dance. 



Image by Livvy Buckland 







Comments

Permalink

Greenbelt Festival 2017


We are extremely excited that an exert of 'Salaam' will be included in the line up of Greenbelt Festival at Boughton House, Kettering, on the 27th August, 7:00pm! 


Since 1974, Greenbelt have had a mission to create spaces, where art, faith and justice collide, hosting a multi-arts festival programme of music, visual and performing arts, spirituality, comedy, talks and discussion. Their commitment to the arts, has made them a great platform for us to showcase 'Salaam.'





Prior to the performance, come along and discover the basics of Kathak, with an exclusive dance workshop, at 12:30pm, which will you give an insight into the joyous and rhythmic indian dance. Footwork, spins,rhytmic choreographies and the art of storytelling through mime, gesture and facial expressions will all be explored!

This will be followed by the highly anticipated presentation of Salaam in the evening! The piece is set to be stunning, cleverly weaving dialogue between exhilarating live music and meaningful storytelling, through Kathak. Acclaimed, Sonia Sabri will command the stage, with her precise, graceful technique and command of rhythm and repertoire, whilst Sarvar Sabri as a gifted tabla player, will provide a deep and unique insight into Indian classical music. 





To find out more- 
http://www.greenbelt.org.uk/artists/salaam-presented-by-sonia-sabri-company/ 






Comments

Permalink


LOK VIRSA: Beyond Borders
Saturday 26th August


As a company that celebrates music, poetry, crafts and dance, we are delighted to announce that our one day mela event, LOK VIRSA: Beyond Borders, will be returning to Birmingham at the Library of Birmingham this summer!
On Saturday the 26th of August, from 11-4:30pm, we will be celebrating South Asian arts and culture, going 'beyond borders' and reminding audiences of unity despite modern borders and political differences. 


This event is very close to our hearts, as inspirational artists from the Indian sub-continent ,will be sharing their love and passion for art forms such as Dance, Arabic Calligraphy, Mehndi, Rangoli and Block Printing! Its set to be an engaging,inclusive day for all of the family, with a variety of engaging workshops, and exciting Indian traditions activities.

You could find yourself unleashing your artistic and creative side, with a Ajrakh inspired block printing activity, that will not only excite but educate you in the fascinating history and culture of South Asia. 

Or simply being memorized by watching the fast paced and energetic traditional folk dances from the subcontinent!


With not long to go, we encourage you to come and re-discover the roots and ideas behind South Asian music, dance and visual arts, at LOK ViRSA!
Comments

Permalink
Akaar 2017
  
Akaar 2017 was a success, showcasing the local talent of the Midlands at the Old Rep Theatre on Saturday 1st July. 

The journey began with an open invitation to Midlands based dance and music groups, of all  backgrounds. The responses received was overwhelming, with a variety of emerging talents showing interest.

As the performance day arrived, adrenaline filled the backstage dressing rooms, as the final preparations of the showcase took place. The weeks of intense rehearsals leading up to the performance had finally come to a close, as the dancers and musicians waited for their call backstage. All of the performers shared a passion for classical, folk, Bharathanatyam, Bollywood and Kathak, and were finally ready to perform on the Old Rep Theatre stage, to an excited audience. 

The public were thrilled with the standard of the show, eager to come back and see similar performances! Akaar 2017 wouldn't have been a success, without all of the hard working performers and supportive audience members! 

We hope to see you for another successful Akaar in 2018! 














Comments

Permalink


Live in London!  

On 26thof June our fabulous group of musicians journeyed down to the British Library in London to perform DASTAAN.

Nerves were in the air but we are proud to announce that the performance went fantastically!
The audience loved the mixture of live music and film and we got some wonderful feedback:

 ‘Brilliant blend of instruments; voices and film’
‘I loved watching the performers riff off each other and show their talents’
‘The musicians and instruments were wonderful and poetic’

The next performance of DASTAAN will be at Wirksworth Festival in September!

Keep checking our news feed for more details on how you could see this truly inspiring performance!
Comments

Akaar 2017

Permalink

Akaar 2017!


Join us to celebrate the emerging talent of the midlands on the 1st July 2017,  with Akaar 2017, where artists, including students from local groups and communities will unite to perform music and dance on the main stage at the old rep theatre. The performances have been supported by the teaching and guidance of artistic  and musical directors Sonia Sabri and Sarvar Sabri, with a strive to create performances that are relevant to modern audiences, with inspirations being drawn from eastern and western cultures.

The dancers and musicians due to perform at the event, will be from aged 11 years plus with various backgrounds,however they will all ultimately share a passion for dance and music being within Classical,Folk,Bharathanatyam, Bollywood, Kathak, as well as new fusion and experimental south asian arts. 

One of the dancers set to perform for the event, will be Shreya Suresh, who’s dance piece is titled 'Taandavam', which can be defined as a divine dance of creation and destruction, following the Bharatanatyam dance style. With the choreography devised by Divya Kasturi , the piece can be described as energetic, supported with the evergreen popular verse of Sri Dayananda Saraswathi -‘Bho Shambo’. She has been involved in a variety of solo performances,  with her most recent being the first round of the BBC young dancers' event in 2016. As a performer that has grown to love art, her attendance at Akaar is something she is excited about, alongside the other artists that are set to perform their own work. 

The event is set be mesmerising as dancers and musicians across the midlands come together to share their passion and love for a variety of music and dance styles. In order to secure your seat for the event, follow the link to book. It will most definetly be a event to not me missed!



Comments

Permalink



Amazing Arts Award


Over the last five weeks Sonia Sabri Company and The Old Rep have partnered together to deliver sessions for the children of Birmingham Chinese school to be able to receive a Discover Arts Award. This culminated in a fantastic display for their parents.


When the day finally arrived nerves were in the air, the parents waited with baited breath (the Oscars has nothing on this!) The time to shine was here at last and shine they did!  Every one enjoyed seeing the exciting arts activities the children had ben involved in over the past few weeks and the characters and masks they had created.


The Arts Award Discover is an industry award certificate by Trinity College London. Through creative workshops the students find out about artists and their work and can share their arts discovery with others. 


Arts award and projects like this are a fantastic way of involving children in the arts and firing a passion! 


Comments

Permalink

A stunning solo

Those who ventured into VIRAGO saw some serious girl power!

Once again Sonia has mesmerised audiences, this time with her new innovative dance solo. VIRAGO exploded into theatres at it's preview performances at Mac Birmingham and The Arena Theatre, Wolverhampton. Did somebody say standing ovation?

'Mind blowing and liberating', are just some of the words that have been used to describe the show.

VIRAGO showed beauty and fragility. It illuminates elements of what the media perceives as 'the woman' and the pressure that creates, yet still presenting empowerment and hope.  

Audience members felt a deep connection to the piece, one woman describing it as  'Deep - it reminded me of something personal in my past. It was like she knew my story.'

It’s safe to say that that VIRAGO was a huge success! A massive thank you to all those involved and our wonderful audiences! 


Keep your eyes peeled for further performances from the company!


Comments

Kathak camp

Permalink


Forget summer camp, 2017 is the year of Kathak camp

From the 22nd to the 26th February 2017 we ran another fantastic Kathak camp for Kathak and Tabla students from around the UK. They were provided with a chance to learn in a fun and focused environment to, enhance their skills and let their artistic nature flourish.
We are very happy to say that’s exactly what they did!
Students were able to focus on rhythm and creativity in Kathak and develop their relationship and understanding of Tabla music.
Each day at we were treated to a room full of smiling faces and eager learners, it was a joy to watch them create and perform.
None of this would have been possible without the hard work of all those involved. A special thank you to the renowned artists Rani Khanam (Kathak) and Sarvar Sabri (Tabla) and the dedicated and talented students. And another huge thank you to everyone who has given their support and time to the project.
Keep your eyes peeled for our next Kathak camp!
If you have any questions or suggestions about Kathak camp please contact us at mel@ssco.org.uk


Comments

Permalink
VIRAGO IS NEAR

With just one week to go until Virago hits the stage at mac birmingham, we are completely run off our feet! Blood, sweat and tears have gone into making this tremendous performance and watching it all come together this Saturday will be the icing on the cake for all of us.

Stepping into the theatre today I was unaware of just what the day would entail, lights, projections, smoke… giant 60ft images of pixelated dancers? It’s all a bit of a mystery to me, but wow it sure is impressive. Mixing digital elements with dance is a rarity and from what I have seen so far there will not be another performance like ‘Virago’.

Women from all over Birmingham have helped us to make this performance as real and heart wrenching as possible and we can’t thank them enough for bravely sharing their experiences and views on womanhood.

Working on this performance has been a dream come true, and I can’t wait to see everyone’s hard work pull together.

I’m a part of this revolution, are you?



















VIRAGO
Saturday 11th March @ 8pm
mac birmingham

Watch our ‘making of Virago’ film here:  http://bit.ly/2lg1Ifh

Book your tickets here: http://bit.ly/2mvnVrx


Comments

Permalink
VIRAGO - DEBUT PERFORMANCE


It’s getting close to the debut date of our brand new performance piece ‘Virago’ and we can’t wait to see you there!

I’ve had the privilege of watching this inspirational piece go from a simple idea to an astounding masterpiece of dance and sound, and wow it has been a journey.

We have used the thoughts and experiences of real women to inspire this piece and to ensure a relatable connection with its audience. Combined with the efforts of Ludic Rooms and Sonia Sabri’s artistic visionary and talents, this show is set to be like no other.

‘Virago’ means ‘female warrior’ in Latin and Vira is ‘the brave one’ in Hindi. This new performance explores the light vs. dark and the real vs. fairy-tale versions of female existence, while discussing the choices and decisions we must make as we go through life regardless of gender: there is no clear path to do the right thing, only options, and not all of them are easy.

Sonia’s signature ‘Urban Kathaklanguage merges on stage with digital artistry, alongside a sound-score combining spoken word and music, with rich and diverse influences: a cacophony of voices from Europe, the Middle East, South Asia and Africa, representing and speaking to women worldwide, but appealing to all of our humanity, regardless of gender and culture.

Prepare yourself for an evening of first class entertainment that will touch your heart and leave you feeling moved.

Come and be part of the revolution.

VIRAGO
mac birmingham
11th March @ 8pm


Comments

Permalink
Interview: Crossing Boundaries with Kathak

An excellent interview with Sonia Sabri features in the January issue of Arts Industry magazine. 

In the article Sonia light-heartedly reflects on her own training, the formation of Sonia Sabri Company and some of the memorable moments since the company’s conception in 2002.

The history of Kathak is also touched upon as Sonia describes the evolution from a storytelling device to a classical art form. The interview also offers an insight into Sonia’s own history and relationship with dance before the formation of Sonia Sabri Company.

Sonia goes on to talk about the company’s commitment to presenting South Asian inspired music and dance in an energetic and exciting way, discussing how the company’s work can appeal to people of all ages and cultural backgrounds.

The article is a wonderful reflection of the company’s work and Sonia and Sarvar’s commitment to producing high quality, innovative art and learning opportunities.

Arts Industry magazine is the only magazine available both in print and online for Britain’s cultural community. The magazine provides articles and interviews as wells as the latest news and job vacancies.

For more information about Arts Industry magazine and to read the article in full visit their website: http://www.artsindustry.co.uk



Comments

A Year Well Spent

Permalink
A Year Well Spent
‘From small beginnings come great things…’

It’s been nearly a year since I started my job in marketing with Sonia Sabri Company, and what a year it has been! With both Christmas and the New Year now approaching I couldn’t think of a better time to look back at some 2016 highlights and accomplishments this wonderful company has achieved (I’d love to mention them all, but that could take me another year!).


Salaam
Salaam was my initial introduction to the company’s work, and was the first show I got the opportunity to attend. We have performed this momentous show 14 times this year, and each time brought delight, wonder and peace to a different location! ‘Salaam’ shows the true beauty, complexity and talent involved with Kathak dance and South Asian music, while promoting the incredibly important message of peace in times of conflict.

Lok Virsa
After the success of last years Lok Virsa we decided to continue it through 2016, making it bigger and better as we go. Lok Virsa is an exhilarating festival of art, music, dance and performance, and we have received some truly wonderful feedback from its attendees. We love offering this as a free event for all to join in with and experience the arts first hand, I too found this to be a fun and interactive way to learn all about South Asian art. (You’ll often find me rushed off my feet at the Rangoli stand.)

They Shall Not Pass
This performance was a personal favourite of mine, in which we collaborated with an eclectic mix of performers including Kathak, Clog, Flamenco and African dancers and musicians. This performance is an incredible example of how different cultures can not only rub alongside eachother, but can work together to create new and beautiful ideas and art; a message that I think we should all promote. 

A huge thank you to everyone at Sonia Sabri Company, and to everyone who supports, collaborates and connects with us. You have all helped to make this year incredible.   

Comments

Permalink
Enlightening Weekend Recipe

  • ·      Cover a 6m by 3m floor with sheeting
  • ·      Add rice, lentils, flowers, and sand
  • ·      Garnish with Glitter
  • ·      Sift with creativity and enjoy your beautiful Rangoli Artwork

Bustling with guests of every age and artists of every genre, the Lighthouse in Poole was brought to life in an open day event like no other, organised to celebrate the re-opening of their arts centre.  With dancers, actors and even circus performers this day was set to be one to remember, how could we not join in? We took the long journey down to Poole in order to add our own flavour to this event with a participatory Rangoli workshop and a special performance of  ‘Salaam’. 

Our Projects Manager (and in house Artist) Mel Lewis hosted the participatory workshop, helping members of the public to create beautiful patterns and decorations on the floor, inspired by the traditional Indian art of Rangoli. The bright colours and swirling shapes soon caught the eyes of the public and before we knew it we were bustling with people getting stuck in and releasing their inner creativity.  

From the abundance of lovely comments we know that this event was greatly enjoyed, and hope that our presence truly helped the day to sparkle. We hope everyone working at the lighthouse had a fantastic time too, and will continue to host a kaleidoscope of events in their wonderfully re-furbished arts venue!




Written by Olivia Buckland

Comments

Kathakbox at Solihull Arts Complex on 22nd May

Permalink

Kathakbox
Tuesday 22 May 2012 at 7.30pm
Solihull Arts Complex, Library Square, Touchwood, Homer Road, Solihull, B91 3RG
Tickets: £10 (£9 concs), £7 children
Box Office: 0121 704 6962 or
book online
Presented by Sampad


With special curtain-raiser performances from Ormiston Sandwell Community Academy, Alderbrook School, Solihull, and Dance Workshop Contemporary Youth Dance

“I felt like jumping up onstage to join them…full of vibrant energy…Kathakbox is at the same time uplifting and highly enjoyable.” (Londondance.com)

Kathakbox is the latest production from one of the UK’s most dynamic dance companies. Sonia Sabri Company celebrate the diverse energy of modern Britain through a brand new dance style: Urban Kathak.

Kathakbox brings together Indian Kathak dance’s grace and vigour and the rhythms & rhymes of Hip Hop culture.

Complex classical rhythms converse with beatbox and the verbal dexterity of Kathak rap (Kavitt) layers with urban poetry.

Kathakbox does not ‘box in’ these genres to a particular time or place, but discovers the raw spirit and heartbeat of each art form which reverberate between cultures.

Reflecting the diverse, intersecting rhythms of the human experience, Kathakbox encourages us to ‘think outside the
box’.

This bold, heart-pounding production features Sonia Sabri performing alongside dancers Nathan Geering, Suzanne Grubham and Amayra Fuller, tabla maestro Sarvar Sabri, acclaimed spoken word artist & vocalist Marcina Arnold and beatboxer Shan Bansil.

Comments (1)

Sonia Sabri Company at the Alchemy Festival 2012

Permalink

Southbank Centre, Belvedere Road, London, SE1 8XX


For the third year running, Sonia Sabri Company returns to the Southbank Centre’s Alchemy festival with a unique programme of performance and workshops:

Lok Virsa: Without Borders
Tuesday 17th April 2012, 6pm
The Clore Ballroom, Southbank Centre
Free event
Lok Virsa simply means the 'heritage of the people'. It is this beautiful simplicity that Sonia Sabri Company celebrates, bringing together the arts of music, poetry and dance rooted in the lands of the Indian subcontinent.
India and Pakistan share a rich and robust cultural heritage, which even today unites the people of each country, despite modern borders and political differences. This living heritage has spread across the globe, influencing much of our contemporary arts today: a testament that physical or any form of segregation does not affect the spirit of the arts and culture. In fact, it is the arts that enable us to rise above material matters and celebrate our existence, beyond what words can describe.
Internationally acclaimed Sonia Sabri Company invites some of the most inspirational artists originally from Pakistan to collaborate on a unique interactive presentation especially for the Alchemy festival. Lok Virsa features a rare chance to see traditional folk song, music and dance from different regions of Pakistan, with a guest speaker to give an overview of the current arts scene. Lok Virsa is hosted by the UK’s leading Kathak artist, Sonia Sabri. Find out more at the Southbank Centre's website.

Workshops (free events)



Pakistani Folk Dance Workshop
Saturday 21 April 2012, 11am and 4pm, The Clore Ballroom, Southbank Centre
Learn the moves of traditional folk dances from the subcontinent that influence much of the dance styles today. This workshop is fast, energetic and packed with lots of fun! Suitable for anyone with an interest in dance.

Calligraphy Workshop
Saturday 21 April, 12.00pm, Foyer Bar, Level 2, Southbank Centre
Urdu calligraphy is an art widely admired for its beauty, and the skill and creativity required of the artist. Have a go at learning the basic techniques or Urdu calligraphy and create a piece of craft that you can show off. Spaces are limited for these free workshops and will be offered on a first come, first served basis.


Folk Song and Rhythms of Pakistan
Led by Sarvar Sabri and Aasia Suman
Saturday 21 April, 1pm & 4.30pm, The Clore Ballroom, Southbank Centre
Have an interest in singing or playing a percussion instrument? This is a fantastic opportunity to learn the essence of folk songs from Punjab and Multan and how to play the regional upbeat grooves with technical flair which makes this genre stand out from the rest. If you have good vocal chords and/or percussion instruments please do bring them along!

Musharia: Poetry Recital
Saturday 21 April, 2.30pm, The Clore Ballroom, Southbank Centre
This is an intimate and interactive session, where you can hear some of the UK's finest poets share their humorous, romantic and topical poetry. You can also share your compositions and take part in discussions. A mushaira is a beloved part of the culture of Pakistan and North India, and it is greatly admired by participants as a forum for free self-expression. Open to all who have an interest in Urdu and Punjabi poetry, ghazal and nazam.



Comments

NEW: Kathak classes in London!

Permalink


FREE TASTER KATHAK CLASS
and enrolment for future classes

Saturday 11th February, 12-1.30pm and 2.30-4pm
The Broadway Studio, 11 Springbridge Mews, Ealing W5 2AB
For info and bookings call: Katie on 07951 762652

Kathak dance originates from the northern region of the Indian sub-continent and is rich with storytelling through mime and gesture, and vibrant with rhythmic moves, fast footwork and spins. It is one the most popular classical dances from India and has influenced other dance styles such as Bollywood and Contemporary.

Sonia Sabri Company (SSCo) is the UK’s pioneering Kathak dance company of international repute presenting the dance form in a new light. SSCo creates ravishing productions for performances in UK and abroad, as well as training young people to become high quality and professional dance artists. SSCo offers Kathak classes and workshops across the country and is delighted to run classes in London led by one of the company’s talented dancers.

Satveer Pnaiser is a classically trained Kathak dancer. British born, and trained by the leading Kathak artist Sonia Sabri, she has been working for Sonia Sabri Company for 9 years performing nationally and internationally and teaching company classes, workshops for schools and festivals. Satveer is an experienced and dedicated teacher, committed to sharing the joy of dance with others as well as generating new life and ambition to the art through student participation and creative collaboration.
Comments (2)

Upcoming performances: Kathakbox

Permalink
Join us for the Spring 2012 leg of the tour of Kathakbox, which has been wowing audiences and critics across the UK and internationally:

"Kathakbox is a pleasure from start to finish. It creates a positive and energetic atmosphere where we are all one and dance is a joyous means of expression and fun." Laura Dodge, Dance Europe

"A clever interweaving of two distinct art forms, bringing out the subtle nuances of their mutuality... making us all feel a part of the unifying Kathakbox." Graham Watts, Dancing Times

Hope to see you soon at a venue near you:

Thursday 1st March at 8pm
Pegasus Theatre, Magdalen Road, Oxford, OX4 1RE
Box Office: 01865 812 150

Monday 5th March at 7.30pm
South Hill Park, Ringmead, Bracknell, Berkshire, RG12 7PA
Presented in association with Asian Arts Agency
Box Office: 01344 484 123

Tuesday 22nd May at 7.30pm
Solihull Arts Complex, Homer Road, Solihull, B91 3RG
Presented in association with Sampad
Box Office: 0121 704 6962

Saturday 9th June at 7pm
Special double-bill featuring Kathakbox and classical Kathak production Ekalya
Kala Sangam, St Peters House, 1 Forster Square, Bradford, BD1 4TY
Box Office: 01274 303340
Comments

Happy New Year!

Permalink
Sonia Sabri Company would like to wish you all a Happy New Year! 2012 is due to be an exciting year for us as we celebrate the company's 10th birthday. We are planning our celebrations and will have an announcement about a special programme to make soon, so please watch this space!

We are also happy and proud to have been invited by Arts Council, England to be a National Portfolio Organisation from April 2012, and you can read more about that on ACE's website.

We'll be adding more news here soon, and remember you can always keep up with us on facebook and twitter.
Comments

Sonia Sabri Company are Associate Artists of mac, Birmingham

Permalink
We're very happy to announce that Sonia Sabri Company have been invited to be Associate Artists at mac, Birmingham.  Since Sonia attended her very first Kathak class as a child at mac, it has been a creative home from home for her, and this new relationship will form the basis of some very exciting work in the next few years.
Our first major project at mac will be rehearsals for our brand new production,
Kathakbox, a meeting of dance and urban culture.  Sonia and fellow artists will be hard at work in the studio from December through to February, and they will be blogging themselves about the artistic process each week.  The premiere of Kathakbox will take place in the theatre at mac on 16th, 17th and 18th February 2011.  We hope to see many of the friends of the company who have supported us through the years at these performances, more information on Kathakbox will follow soon.
Sonia will also continue to teach her regular Kathak classes at
mac, and this Autumn Sarvar Sabri too will join the mac team as tabla tutor.  For more information on these and mac's other courses check out their website, links at the end of this post.
In the Spring,
mac opened its doors once more after an intensive building project and refurbishment programme.  If you haven't been down to check out the lovely new spaces, familiar friendliness and quality arts programme, what are you waiting for?   www.macarts.co.uk
Comments

Sonia Sabri Company at NAAD festival of Kathak Dance

Permalink

Come and join us at the Bhavan Centre on XYZ
Comments
/