An Interview with Visaic

We recently sat down with Visaic, a young German-American composer and part of the Utpalasia family of artists, who has recently released his newest work, “The Corruption of Princes”. Thanks for being with us today, Visaic! We’re excited about your new track and eager to learn a bit more about your process and inspiration. First… Continue reading An Interview with Visaic

Where did the capital of Nepal get its name?

The name “Kathmandu” originated from two words, kath – meaning wood – and mando – or mandap, meaning house – as most of the buildings were constructed from wood, and then beautifully ornamented. The capital was still called “Kantipur” up until the seventeenth century. No one can overstate the religious, cultural, and traditional importance of… Continue reading Where did the capital of Nepal get its name?

What is tatkar?

Tatkar is footwork. The patterns and styles vary greatly and emphasis is placed on producing a sound from the feet as well as from the ghungharoos (bells). Most Kathak performances feature tatkar, which highlights a dancer’s technical skill, stamina, and artistry. Often, a dancer will sing a series of bols, or syllabic sounds, in a… Continue reading What is tatkar?

What is a hasta mudra?

There are two types of hasta mudras, or hand signs, in Kathak dance. Asanyukt mudras use one hand; sanyukt mudras use both hands. The most commonly recognized asanyukt mudra is pataka, which keeps all of the fingers of the right hand straight, with the thumb touching the first finger. A pataka can be used to… Continue reading What is a hasta mudra?

What is a chakkar?

A chakkar is a fast spin. It requires good balance control, proper position, stamina, and speed to be correctly executed. Young dancers begin to practice chakkars at an early age, starting with a nine-count circle, then moving down in counts until they have perfected the circle of one. Experienced artists have been known to perform… Continue reading What is a chakkar?

What is the namaskar we do at the beginning and end of each class, and what does it mean?

Dancers traditionally do the namaskar which is both a greeting and an invocation to the god, asking for help, and also forgiveness from Mother Earth for pounding on her. All dances are done barefoot, as leather is not worn by Hindus. There are many different forms and styles of namaskar, depending on the artist’s preference… Continue reading What is the namaskar we do at the beginning and end of each class, and what does it mean?