Kaavya is a 10-year-old girl from Texas who loves Harry Potter, puzzles, musical theatre, GIlmore Girls, and robotics.
She also is about to embark on the most important moment of her life up until now: her arangetram. (Translation: ascending the stage). This 2-hour solo dance debut showcases a mastery in Bharatanatyam, the oldest form of Indian classical dance which originated over 2,000 years ago.
The pressures for any young person who prepares for this performance are extraordinary, but Kaavya's situation is unique. She not only is one of the youngest students to have an arangetram, but she is trained by her very own mother, a professional dancer and respected guru with a formidable
reputation of her own to uphold.
Each gesture in Bharatanatyam holds a distinct meaning that when woven together, tell ancient stories from Hindu mythology. Kaavya continues the tradition of telling these stories through choreography that has been passed down to her over many generations. And, in spite of a global pandemic disrupting her performance, emotional breakdowns in rehearsal, and dealing with the disappointment of not having her grandparents visit for her big day, Kaavya impressively adapts to the new circumstances and carries on to claim a dance form that has survived millennia.
Premiere at the Asia Society Texas Center
Asia Society Texas Center with Michael Buening
Pre-Production: Jerusalem Peace Builders
A documentary exploring peacemaking through the eyes of teenagers in Palestine and Israel. The film will ask the question if and how these peace making programs make an impact over a 4-year period as the teenagers transition to adulthood and are confronted with joining the army.
The teenagers from Palestine and Israel meet in Navasota, Texas each summer for this peace building program. Together they engage in activities which includes writing, arts, drama, film discussions, various outdoor activities, and of course dialogue around the vision to create a world where they can live together without violence.
The Organization in Focus:
Jerusalem Peacebuilders (JPB) is an interfaith, non-profit organization with a mission to create a better future for humanity across religions, cultures, and nationalities. Integral to that mission is the belief that the future of Jerusalem is the future of the world. To that end, JPB promotes transformational, person-to-person encounters among the peoples of Jerusalem, Israel, Palestine, and the United States.