New Delhi, May 1 (IANS) The much revered annual Festival of Ballets by Shriram Bharatiya Kala Kendra — now in its 22nd year — is all set to break stereotypes and bend gender rules while bringing to fore what still concerns modern society. Also Read - New Delhi, Goa and Mumbai Top Booked Destinations by Indians During Valentine’s Week

Titled “Festival of Ballets 2017,” the four-day event will witness four grand dance-dramas, “Meera,” “Durga,” “Karna” and “Khajuraho” at Kamani Auditorum on May 5, 6, 11 and 12. Also Read - Mughal Gardens to Open For Public From THIS Date, Entry Through Online Booking Only | Check Timing, Other Details

So what can the audience look forward to? A man enacting the female role of goddess “Durga,” stone walls cave in for a “Meera” whose dancing and singing is emblematic of female abandon; “Karna” deals with the philosophy of nature and nurture, debating why some people are denied their rightful place in society and “Khajuraho” is about man-woman harmony. Also Read - Costliest 'Ghagra'? Drugs Worth Rs 1.7 Crore Hidden in Lehengas That Were Being Sent to Australia

“I wanted to re-interpet these age-old stories in a way which is relevant to our society today. Each character symbolizes the dilemmas and traumas of modern-day society, each woman defies the male order and each demon (mahishasur) that lurks in every corner is slayed by strong powerful women who are independent and self-sufficient. We are bending all gender rules here, and you will see a man playing Durga and this will become apparent only when the costume comes off,” Shobha Deepak Singh, Director Shriram Bharatiya Kala Kendra and festival director informed IANS.

Meera is one of the greatest saint poetesses of our country and the dance-drama themed around her is sure to attract heavy footfall. Played by Molina Singh, a well-known Odissi and Kathak dancer of the Jaipur Gharana, “Meera” shows she exists in every woman who is free to make her own choices.

In the ballet “Durga”, played by Shiburam Mohant, an evocative scene captures the true power of a woman. “Karna” is being performed in Mayurbhanj Chau style bringing to life the the most penetrating study of relations between man and his destiny, nature and nurture, deemed and redeemed.

And then there is “Khajuraho” — a sensuous Mayurbhanj Chau dance-drama choreographed by the late K.C. Naik that was first performed at the Kendra in 1984 and continues to regale audiences with its impeccable grammar and style, where the dancers impart exciting movements evoking subtle nuances of passion and love in the backdrop of Khajuraho.

This is published unedited from the IANS feed.