FORBIDDEN | Contemporary Dance based on KATHAK  
  • A solo performance by Aditi Mangaldas

Why is the world scared of female sexual desire? Why are women the world over, from conservative as well as liberal societies; sanctioned, judged, controlled, hounded and eventually punished to have the courage to own their desire?

What is at the root of this fear?

Evidence from all cultures is the subterranean elixir that nourishes the making of FORBIDDEN, which traverses through a gamut of emotions and states of being, while reclaiming and owning desire.

  • The work is in three parts:
  • Awakening: Dream, Fragrant flower, Cage
  • Playing the Game: Denial, Adornment, Seduction, Rage
  • Burning: My story, Consigning to flames all that is FORBIDDEN
  • Concept, Choreography And Dance: Aditi Mangaldas
  • Dramaturge: Farooq Chaudhry
  • Light Design: Michael Hulls
  • Mentor: Morag Deyes
  • Music Composition: Nicki Wells
  • Costume Design: Kimie Nakano
  • Costume Realisation: Sandhya Raman
  • Rehearsal Director: Gaurav Bhatti

Commissioned by: Aditi Mangaldas Dance Company - The Drishtikon Dance Foundation

Co-commissioned by: Sadler’s Wells Theatre, London; National Centre for The Performing Arts, Mumbai; Esplanade – Theatres on the Bay, Singapore

Duration: Approx. 1 hour

The Official Trailer can be viewed at: >>

For complete credits visit E-brochure here >>

CHOREOGRAPHER’S NOTE Artists are driven to explore subjects that consume them. That drive is a possession which compels artists to face and share provocative issues.

There are countless insidious ways that taboos creep into one’s daily existence.Social structures, mythology, images from popular culture, the culture of shame that women live with, all become a subconscious stream that shape our behaviour.

As an artist, I feel compelled to confront these taboos. FORBIDDEN has been realised after months of internalisation, debate, troughs and peaks; as each collaborator offered nuance to the work, till I found myself immersed in it.

Sexuality is private but the taboos attached to female sexuality requires and demands taking a stand on the universal, public and personal front.

- Aditi Mangaldas

COLLABORATORS’ NOTE Farooq Chaudhry | Dramaturge
"Aditi Mangaldas' work, Forbidden, represents a major landmark in her career and the classical art form of Kathak. This work is characterized by its unapologetic, daring, and vulnerable approach to shedding light on the obstacles to female eroticism, all while maintaining a sense of beauty and grace. The collaboration changed me and shifted my moral dial!

Nicki Wells | Music Composer
"Aditi Mangaldas raises the beacon for women’s voices who may have been silenced or repressed in her new powerful contemporary cross-over dance show Forbidden. There is a fire in her approach to be unapologetically herself without the constraints of society. Her dance invites freedom to women who may otherwise feel they could never speak up. A self-acceptance and an inevitable peace in honing one’s own right and power. It was such a pleasure to compose the music for this show and to capture the soul of its message."

Morag Deyes | Mentor
"A genuine trailblazer of contemporary Kathak and a visionary maker, Aditi Mangaldas has taken the subject matter and her astonishing artistry to a new level. What an enlightening, intense and inspiring experience it was to be part of FORBIDDEN's creative process and with such world class collaborators. I’m thrilled to know this will be on the main stage at Sadlers Wells, where it rightly belongs."

TOUR MUMBAI: 4th December 2022 | National Centre for Performing Arts
LONDON, UK: 13th & 14th October 2023 | Sadler’s Wells Theatre
NEWCASTLE, UK: 20th October 2023 | Northern Stage
SINGAPORE: 24th & 25th November 2023 | Esplanade – Theatres on the Bay.
THE HAGUE, NETHERLANDS: 22nd May 2024 | Korzo Theater Book
KUOPIO, FINLAND: 15th & 16th June 2024 | Kuopio City TheaterBook