STILL I RISE
Dance-theatre work that interprets the pivotal episodes in Draupadi's life seen from a first person perspective.
Premiered in 2018 for Narika, an organization aiding abused women in the Bay Area (California), Still I Rise is a solo work incorporating Bharatanatyam and spoken word. Since its premiere Still I Rise has been staged at world stages such as Natarani - Ahmedabad, Rhodez (France), SAPAF (Tulsa), Sampradaya (Toronto), Experimental Theatre NCPA (Mumbai), Madhavi Festival (Delhi), Drive East Festival, and Karthik Fine Arts (Chennai). Draupadi may have been saved by Krishna from public shaming, but beyond that her sense of self was constantly challenged. This dance-theatre work interprets the pivotal episodes in her life seen from a first person perspective. Using take off points in mythology to transcend into the imaginary, it attempts to build a bridge between myth and life.
“For a couple of reasons, …..Vidhya Subramanian's portrayal of Draupadi in Still I Rise lingers in memory. The foremost among them is a delicate and subtly suggestive way in which she has used the classical dance vocabulary and her power of controlled abhinaya for it. A second is her interpretation of the character which she has spring from the mythological frame and stand in front of us talking unassumingly in first person in a language comprehensible to us today. In the process we feel she herself steps aside from her character and with conviction talks to us.”