Happy July Everyone! We are happy to bring to you our summer issue of Global Rasika, the online quarterly launched in April of this year to foster critical thinking and discourse in the Odissi field.
Our sophomore issue, ‘Redefining Odissi in a Global Context,’ explores this dance form in the international sphere. As Odissi is now forging roots in other parts of the world, it is important to re-examine, and to an extent, re-negotiate the cultural values that have traditionally dominated how the art is taught, learned, choreographed, and presented. The global ecosystem that Odissi now inhabits will bring to the table a diversity of perspectives, both artistically and culturally. It is inevitable that the dance form as practiced in the current context will transform to some degree in order to accommodate these views.
In this issue of Global Rasika, our writers carefully examine Odissi as it is taken out of its cultural roots and into an international context: Commodification of Odissi, practicing the art as a static vs. living dance form, re-examining the concepts of rasa and rasika to increase accessibility of the art form, and the experience of teaching and learning Odissi in Russia, are some of the topics explored in this issue. We are also pleased to feature Malaysian Odissi dancer January Low, who enhanced our discussions by sharing her own experiences as a performer.
I would like to extend a heartfelt thanks to our contributors for this issue: Aastha Gandhi, Elena Catalano, Nabanita (Neeta} Pal, and Taiisia Shpulnikova – Thank you all for sharing your research, personal and professional experiences and observations to make Global Rasika what we strive to be. Special thanks to Debiprasad Sahoo who was generous enough to contribute his images once more for this issue.
We encourage all of you to continue to read, share and discuss… and contribute to our efforts to build a global network of dancers, scholars, researchers, critics to cultivate thought-leadership for the cause of Odissi.
Thank you for your support and for taking this journey with us.
Editor, Global Rasika