6-8 SEP 2018 7:30 PM

“I am Ravana”



RM150–Category 1
RM100–Category 2
RM  80–Category 3
RM  50–Category 4


A visual feast of dance, song and drama, the production I am Ravana is based upon the timeless Indian epic – The Ramayana.

For over 2000 years this saga of love, lust, honor, desire and death has been performed, narrated and chanted across South East Asia and around the globe. It is a tale of human frailty that brings to life the inner turmoil present in the hearts and minds of everyone. It is a story of Rama, and his wife Sita, who is kidnapped by King Ravana.

This age old epic has been re-imagined and choreographed by Australia’s premier organisation for the Indian Arts, Saraswati Mahavidhyalaya (SMV), and is being presented at the KL International Arts Festival in collaboration with The Temple of Fine Arts (TFA) Inner Space Dance. It will explore the shades of grey in Ravana’s motivation and desire and is framed by the last moments of his life, when he asks humanity, “why do you rejoice in my death?”.

The quest for meaning, purpose, and fulfillment is timeless and universal. Ravana’s hubris is ours today – personally, politically and globally.

*The Performance is in English

Read more on the Festival blog here.

About the Cast and Creative Team

Sukhi Krishnan (Artistic Director – SMV)

Sukhi is an appointed director of the Temple of Fine Arts International (TFA) and the President / Artistic Director of Saraswati Mahavidhyalaya (SMV). She is also currently a lecturer in Bharatanatyam at the WAAPA. Sukhi has 40 years of experience in dance and choreography and has worked on more than 20 dance drama productions to date. These productions have toured internationally where her responsibility includes that of principal dancer, lead choreographer and artistic director.

Umesh Shetty (Artistic Director – ISD)

Umesh Shetty completed his Bachelor’s Degree in Performing Arts (Dance) at the Edith Cowan University, Western Australia in 1997. During this time, he trained and performed with forefront choreographers Neil Adams, Chrissy Parrot, Nannette Hassall, Reyes de Lore, Alan Alder, Lucette Alder and David Prudam. In 2012 he obtained a Masters in Choreography at Middlesex University, London. Being versatile in both classical and contemporary styles, Umesh has distinguished himself as a dancer of note. He has been awarded several Cameronian Awards (Malaysia) and the Anugerah Seni Negara 2006 (National Arts Award 2006) under the category ‘Dancer’. Umesh is currently a full lecturer at the National Arts Academy Malaysia (ASWARA) and is one of the Directors of TFA.

Dr Sarasa Krishnan (Artistic Director – SMV)

Sarasa Krishnan is a multi-disciplinary practitioner of the arts, focusing on dance and visual arts. She received her dance training from renowned masters in their fields from around the world, giving her a holistic view on the practice of the arts.  Her training at the WAAPA  further enhanced her dance practice, drawing together her understanding of Indian classical dance with western contemporary dance and ballet to enhance her choreographic skills. She has presented solo performances in Paris, Florence, UK, Singapore, Scotland and Australia. Sarasa being a self-taught Visual artist, furthered her interest in visual arts in Florence, Italy, studying the painting technique of Da Vinci and the art of fresco. Combining her skills in dance and visual arts, she has created a unique style of painting using dance movement and rhythm to infuse colour onto canvas. Sarasa’s doctorate focuses on the transformation of consciousness in the audience and artist, based on the anti-establishment theory of Rasa. Her body of work in dance or painting reflects the philosophy, aesthetics and the metaphysical abstractions of the Indian tradition in conjunction with scientific enquiry. She is a published author of a book ‘Bharata’s Karanas’ that establishes the connection between ancient theatre in the dancing body in a modern context.

Manjula Radhakrishnan (Senior Dancer / Choreographer / Lead Trainer)

Manju began her journey in dance at the tender age of five at the Temple of Fine Arts, Kuala Lumpur. She trained in various dance styles, including Bharatha Natyam, Odissi, Kathak and Contemporary dance. Manju is a senior dancer and teacher at SMV. To date, she has performed in numerous dance productions by the Temple of Fine Arts International, including the lead role in the dance-drama Shakuntala. Having performed in countries such as Australia, Malaysia, India, Sri Lanka, Singapore, USA, UK and Cambodia, Manju is an adept dancer with immense experience in performance and choreography.

Aarthi Kamalesh (Senior Dancer / Choreographer / Lead Trainer)

Since 1992, Aarthi Kamalesh has been an active participant of all major TFA dance-drama productions and has performed with TFA locally and abroad. She is also fortunate to have had direct tutelage from legendary Kathak and Odissi maestros, Pandit Birju Maharaj and Guru Kelucharan Mohapatra. In July 2014, Aarthi attended an intensive month-long workshop at the world-renowned Odissi institution in Bangalore, Nrityagram. Under the watchful eye and guidance of Gurus Bijayini Satpathy and Surupa Sen, Aarthi discovered an exciting new world of Odissi that has left a lasting impact on her psyche as a dancer.  

Kamal Thurairajah (Dramaturg / Producer)

Kamal has dabbled with the various courses (dance, music and drama) that are taught by TFA KL and SMV Perth. He has performed internationally at a number of the institution’s productions. This includes large scale dance / drama productions and smaller experimental type theatre works.  Over the years, Kamal has developed an immense interest in the art of theatre making and its intersection with science theories and spirituality. He spends most of his time researching the fields of spirituality, its intersection with the field of modern science and relevance to man’s day to day life. His education in engineering further enhances his ability to question / experiment with stories, theories and ideas and to develop well formulated concepts that govern the artistic direction of creative works.

Sushant Krishnan (Experience Manager)

From an early age, Sushant has been exposed to arts through training in Indian dance styles, ballet and western contemporary dance, as well as participation in performances both in Australia and across USA, Europe, and Asia. In 2010, Sushant graduated under the tutelage of Sukhi Shetty Krishnan in Bharata Natyam and since 2012 has been teaching Bharata Natyam as Saraswati Mahavidhyalaya (SMV).  Sushant’s unique ability to understand both the arts and technology has led him to lead, create and support the delivery of engaging onstage and offstage experience for audiences, staff and production cast member at Saraswati Mahavidhyalaya. This has resulted in his involvement in SMV’s experience and marketing team for its productions, on-going educational activities and supporting the experience/marketing function for the Swan Festival of Lights.

Sharmila Radha Krishnan (Artistic Manager / Stage Manager)

Sharmila has studied with TFA / SMV since a young age in Indian classical dance, classical vocal music and the Sitar. She has also had the opportunity to perform extensively in many dance productions by TFA International and SMV. Having successfully graduated in dance with SMV, Sharmila has taught and shared her knowledge of Indian classical dancing as a volunteer educator with SMV for the last 17 years. Through this role, she has effectively coordinated rehearsals for numerous productions, achieving successful outcomes from students involved. Outside of her role as an educator, Sharmila has found her calling in organisational and operational management. She has headed the Administrative Team at SMV and managed the artistic planning (for the Artistic Director) for the prestigious Swan Festival of Lights.

Ganesh Arulampalam (Technical Manager)

Ganesh Arulampalam first got involved in performances as a teenager, while a student at the TFA Kuala Lumpur in the early 1980’s, both in dance and drama. He has performed in all TFA’s major productions in the 80’s and 90’s in Malaysia, Singapore, India and Australia. Ganesh first got started in the technical aspects of performance while taking charge of student works in the late 1980s. Ganesh has also been the Festival Director (and Stage Manager) for the Swan Festival of Lights from 2008 to 2017. This is a major multicultural festival in Perth, involving up to 25 artistic and community groups and audiences of 30,000 to 35,000 annually. The festival features both local and international artistes, and has hosted world renowned artistes such as Ustad Usman Khan and Dr L Subramaniam.

Saraswati Mahavidhyalaya

Saraswati Mahavidhyalaya (SMV) is a centre for learning, dedicated to the promotion of culture and fine arts in Australia and beyond; transcending age, cultural, social and geographical boundaries. It offers courses in dance, music, linguistics, culinary sciences, Ayurveda (Vedic approach to health) and martial arts. Arts and sciences, both ancient and modern can be studies, explored and synthesises into how we live.

Over the past 25 years, SMV has staged internationally acclaimed dance and music productions such as Swan Lake, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Lady White Snake, Ramayana, The Legend of Mahsuri, and Naad Brahma in Australia, Malaysia, Singapore, Sri Lanka, India and the USA. SMV collaborates with various artistes within Australia and internationally on joint works and productions. SMV now seeks to produce a new work annually as an emerging professional performance company.

For more information, visit http://www.smv.org.au

The Temple of Fine Arts – Inner Space Dance (ISD)

Conceptualised as the performing wing of The Temple of Fine Arts International, TFA Inner Space Dance is an award-winning performing arts company that aspires to push the boundaries of traditional norms of dance creation and presentation. ISD explores and innovates on well-loved themes and ideas in a totally original and contemporary manner that spills beyond traditional boundaries, breaking down habituated perceptions and notions of what dance is so as to capture the attention and abiding interest of art lovers of all races for our unique genre of dance. ISD seeks to produce new and creative works annually in collaboration with diverse artistes and arts forms with the intent to inspire young artists, engage the community at a grass roots level and finally to create a platform that will provide artists the ability to become wholly available for the creation of innovative forms of artistic expression.

For more information visit: https://www.facebook.com/InnerSpaceDance/


“A true feast for the senses” 

West Australian

CSR (Community Outreach Program) Partner

LendLease Foundation
Main Sponsor
Yayasan Hasanah Tulips Movement PTPK Caring Pharmacy A-Day ElleForElle

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