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Natasha Bakht

Arts & Expression, South Asian, Dance

Natasha Bakht

Natasha Bakht is an Indian contemporary dancer and choreographer. She trained in bharata natyam under Menaka Thakkar for over 20 years, touring internationally with her company. For three seasons, she danced with the Shobana Jeyasingh Dance Company in London, England, renowned for its groundbreaking work in Indian contemporary dance. She has also worked with choreographers Yvonne Coutts, Joan Phillips, Wayne McGregor and Robert Desrosiers and has appeared in their works in a variety of festivals including several Kalanidhi Festivals and the Canada Dance Festival.

Natasha has collaborated with Montreal's Roger Sinha on three pieces. Her own choreography includes a group piece, Riaz, for the Menaka Thakkar Dance Company and four solos for herself entitled Dance If You Must, Appropriating Edges, Obiter Dictum and White Space. Obiter Dictum was nominated for a 2003 Dora Mavor Moore Award for Outstanding New Choreography.

In 2008, Natasha was the co-recipient of the K.M. Hunter Artists Award, which is presented to individual artists in Ontario who have begun to produce a body of work and are starting to make a significant mark in their field. Natasha has been described as "a brilliant diamond" (The Dance Current, 2005), and as being "all honed to the bone elegance and precision" (Vancouver Sun, 2004).

Critical Reviews

"Bakht's performance gave an inkling of the powerhouse that she is. With a body that moves with innate grace, a dynamism that blurs the gap between the possible and the impossible in its exploration of spaces and a vigour that is not encountered often, she fired up the stage…"
– Kathakali Jana, Hindustan Times, January 17, 2008

"La précision de la gestuelle, l'extrême épure de l'architecture chorégraphique, le mélange improbable mais réussi de l'élégance aérienne et de la puissance tellurique de l'interprétation, la perfection physique et l'aura de beauté de la danseuse, tout cela laisse littéralement sans souffle."
– Aline Apostolska, La Presse, Décembre 2007

"Mais dans ce déferlement de rafinement, la nouvelle création de Bakht présentée en grande première, White Space-une réflexion sur la blancheur-,séduit par son dépouillement énigmatique, son approche plus déconstruite et sa dramaturgie subtile."
– Frédérique Doyon, Le Devoir, Décembre 2007

"Malgré l'extrême sophistication de sa danse tout en angles et en précisions, celle-ci dégage une douce sensualité qui prend sa source dans la pudeur et al concentration."
– Frédérique Doyon, Le Devoir, Décembre 2007

"Shobana Jeyasingh's solo features the exquisite dancing of Natasha Bakht…The stunning Bakht, replete with gorgeous long legs and arms, is supple, elastic and precise, and the choreographer has utilized the dancer's strength in creating the quirky and unpredictable Triptych Self…In short, Jeyasingh has created an homage to a perfect body, but one in which the mind is in a whirl. It is, in fact, this feeling of restless energy that elevates Triptych Self from pure dance to the agony and ecstasy of being a modern-day woman."
– Paula Citron, The Globe and Mail, February 26, 2005

"Bakht is all honed to the bone elegance and precision."
– Deborah Meyers, Vancouver Sun, July 28, 2004

"Bakht the gifted technician…is cool, poised and elegant. She uses her body with surgical precision, every gesture, every step, cuts cleanly and exquisitely through the air."
Paula Citron, The Globe and Mail, December 14, 2002

"The sensational Bakht can toss off pure bharatanatyam with ease, as well as tackling anything that is thrown her way. She has an elastic body and a surgically precise technique."
– Paula Citron, The Globe and Mail, December 24, 2002

"…the combination of delicacy and power, reserve and boldness, assertion and grace in her dancing speak not only of her own history but of a whole changing art form."
Judith Mackrell, The Guardian, April 23, 1997

"Uncompromising yet graceful, Natasha is made of steel and skin…"
– Shreela Ghosh, Aditi Magazine, March 1995

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