Source: indiawest.com; Author: Sunita Sohrabji; Photo Courtesy: Margo Moritz

The competing forces of feminism and femininity rivetingly conjoined in two new works, “Shiva” and “Bhakti,” premiered by the Chitresh Das Dance Company at Z Space Oct. 26 and 27.

The legendary Chitresh Das, who will turn 70 next year, is credited with introducing Western audiences to classical Indian kathak, a dance form characterized for its incorporation of a spoken rhythm — bol — to fast footwork and chakkars, or twirls. Das did not perform in either piece, but conceptualized, choreographed and directed his students through “Shiva,” a complex composition which explored Lord Shiva’s well-known passion for destruction, but also his lesser-known capability for compassion, Shakti, acknowledged by Das as a feminine trait in this story

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