Pradhanica explores the sonic and narrative possibilities of rhythm through dance and music. Dizzying spins, fast-paced footwork, immersive emotions, and dynamic drumming come together in this contemporary presentation of the Indian classical dance form of Kathak.
In Pradhanica, named for female “leader” or “head,” choreographer, percussionist, and solo dancer Jin Won, described as “exuberant” by the New York Times, demonstrates her mastery over rhythm, leading an ensemble comprised of the Indian tabla, African djembe, Spanish cajon, and Indian sitar. Won collaborates with renowned Indian music maestro Pandit Divyang Vakil to create this percussion driven work that has a transformative effect. Together they delve deeply into how emotions are expressed solely through rhythm and movement and explore the fundamental rhythmic connection between the dancer and music.
South Korean artist Jin Won is an accomplished kathak dancer, and tabla player, and ambassador for Indian classical arts. Her love of Indian arts led her to live in India for over 15 years training in tabla under Pandit Divyang Vakil, and in Kathak under Shrimati Shubha Desai in Ahmedabad, Gujarat before joining the Taalim School of Indian Music in the US as a faculty member and artist. Her unique journey from a theatre artist in Korea to Indian classical artist in India and the US has been covered by the Korean Broadcasting Company, and NJTV.
A strong, yet graceful performer, Won infuses her own creativity and training as a tabla artiste into her dance performances, which is clearly visible in Pradhanica. She draws on her Korean heritage and Western sensibility to create a contemporary style of kathak dance that communicates to audiences of all backgrounds. In addition to her work as a soloist, she has worked with leading choreographers, including Shrimati Kumudini Lakhia, Shrimati Saswati Sen, and Maulik Shah & Ishira Parikh. She has performed in prestigious Indian dance festivals such as the Delhi Shrinagar Dance Festival, the Jaipur Udayshankar Festival, and the Kolkata Dance Festival.
The treasure was Pradhanica. Fleet-footed choreography, along with music which illuminated Indian rhythms in enticingly off-beat ways. (Jin) Won’s musicality transformed her dancing into something primal. The tension between wildness and control was a hallmark of Pradhanica.
Gia Kourlas, New York Times
Jin Won adds innovations to North Indian Kathak dance…is the forward scout leading this ensemble into new lands in a delightful concert framed but not limited by tradition. She is an embodiment of pure rhythm, irresistible as she is versatile.
Robert Johnson, NJ Arts
split-second precision, crisp spins, and clean footwork went perfectly with the ear-pleasing, yet complex arrangement of drumming.