A while back I made the assertion that modern dance has the ability to be all encompassing. In that, it is the only dance form that can reinvent itself and incorporate all ethnic styles of dance. Modern dance is the only dance form flexible enough to do this. Mr. Sweeney disagreed with me and brought up the choreographer Akram Khan as an example, a choreographer trained in the Indian classical form called kathak but also, may I add, trained in modern dance in England. He has lived in England most of his life absorbing, all the varied arts and sounds available to him there. I had the pleasure to see Kahn's "Ma" recently. From what I saw although Mr. Kahn uses both modern and Indian styles of dance and his music is primarily traditional Indian the only reason he can produce works in this style is because: 1. his abilities as a choreogrpaher and 2. his strong training in modern dance. Modern elements are the primary component in his work. As he says himself, in an interview with Philip Szporer 'he hires modern dancers because of their flexibility and ability to pick up his way of moving', he says, "Indian classical dancers are fed information in a very codified way. Contemporary dancers are risk-oriented, and quicker as a result in creating material."
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