“Bhairava” evokes facets of Shiva, the Lord of Dance, as both the destroyer of evil and the guardian of time. He is fierce and drives terrible deeds, but he is also the Divine Protector and Supreme Guardian; his intention springs from pure compassion. In this work, carried by a strong and deeply evocative musical score and by the singular energy of the ancient site of Hampi, dancer and choreographer Shantala Shivalingappa embodies the presence and distinctive qualities of Bhairava. With her technical mastery and refined expressivity, she alternates between moments of precise symbolic gestures and more abstract body language surging from the powerful and omnipresent persona of Bhairava, creating a vivid incarnation of the deity.
“Bhairava” was directed and produced by veteran dance-filmmakers Marlene Millar & Philip Szporer (Mouvement Perpétuel, Montréal) with cinematography by Kes Tagney. This 14-minute site-specific dance-for-camera film was filmed on location in Anegundi and Hampi, India in February 2017.
The production was made possible with the generous support of the Conseil des arts et des lettres du Québec, the Canada Council for the Arts, the Kishkinda Trust/Shama Pawar (Anegundi), and Danse Danse (Montréal).