Did you attend our first virtual edition of Pitch New Works earlier this month? Today, we’re highlighting project news that we shared with online attendees. Samsara, a two-way collaboration between choreographers Aakash Odedra (United Kingdom) and Hu Shenyuan (China) produced by Aakash Odedra Company, was first introduced to ISPA delegates at the New York 2020 ISPA Congress.
We caught up with the company's Producer, Anand Bhatt, who shared news of the work's trajectory since pitched. Here is what he shared:
Within a week of the pitch in January, we started contingency planning for COVID-19 since one of the lead dancers was Chinese and travel restrictions quickly came into force. We sadly lost a residency at Jacob’s Pillow as a result of COVD-19 on 2nd February for example. However, we were lucky that the artist was eventually able to travel to Australia and the show did open. The production team departed on 8th March with some creatives from Italy who found getting home harder as they went into lockdown earlier, and then of course we in the UK went into lockdown the following week.
Samsara was a great success for Aakash Odedra Company and Bagri Foundation. The show received nightly standing ovations at the premiere run at Asia TOPA Festival in Melbourne. The production had much soul with virtuoso performances by both dancers and musicians. Plans for subsequent touring in 2020 to the UK and China are postponed owing to COVID-19. But the incredible quality of the performance means we will persist with opportunities to tour into 2021 and 2022.
With a proven track record for success, ISPA's Pitch New Works program continues to assist works in development with securing touring dates, regional agents, co-commissions, premieres, and more.
Interested in presenting Samsara? Contact Anand Bhatt, Producer, Aakash Odedra Company.