Rite of Spring Mid Scale


Taking the South Indian classical dance form of Bharatanatyam with it's intricate rhythmic footwork, geometric and dynamic movements and expressive prowess, Seeta has created a compelling excerpt of the iconic Rite of Spring with a view to creating a full length work with 12 dancers.

This will be the first time this iconic piece of music has been interpreted in this way, and an exciting bridge between two very technical, powerful and evocative art forms (Western classical music and Indian classical dance).

Departing from gimmickry and cultural baggage, this work will see dance and music at it's best in a celebration of life.

Normally seen in solo presentations, Bharatanatyam is an incredibly rich art form that is being recognised more and more globally within a wider dance landscape.

The UK is at the forefront of some of the most fruitful developments within this art form, and this work will be one of the most exciting flirtations between East and West in current times.

Looking beyond notions of the exotic and Orientalist perceptions of Eastern classical arts, this work will showcase some of the finest Indian classical dance talent across the globe.

Breaking open the possibilities for Bharatanatyam to be seen on par with other classical arts, and the possibilities within the art from to reach new audiences, as well as bringing more diverse audiences to enjoy the incredible music composition that has inspired many Western choreographers over the years.

With ensemble Bharatanatyam in a contemporary context being a rarity, this work fills a gap and opens the potential from much more growth of the art form, and coming together of diverse audiences.

Praise for The Rite of Spring 2018-2021

Seeta's brand new ensemble work reimagining the iconic Rite of Spring completed a successful UK tour in May 2019.
Here are some press reviews about the work. Make sure you watch this space for next time it tours!

Patel brings out the more lyrical, romantic elements of Stravinsky’s score…instead of an earthy, ominous Rite, through Patel’s eyes the scene is dreamy, the stage glowing (there is lovely lighting from Warren Letton), hand gestures look like plants growing, nature abundant in a place of warmth and wonder.

Patel quickly seizes on the raw, percussive energy of Stravinsky’s chugging music. As the cast of six stamp out its rhythms, it feels like the two very different forms were meant for each other. The dance is energetic, full of intricate footwork and gesture, and of geometric patterns that come and go with ease as the dancers weave around each other…Patel’s Rite is a fascinating diversion from the usual take on the story. It also looks gorgeous thanks to Warren Letton’s lighting and Jason and Anshu Arora’s quirky costumes.

…then The Rite of Spring began and it was fabulous. Peacock-eye fingers jabbed out from thrusting arms, bare feet thumped the floor and bodies prowled the stage in strict geometric formations that carried a powerful emotional drive. The musicality was delicious and the unified sense of purpose was palpable.

Patel has created an authentic dance piece that is truly fresh and original. Her aim to bring Bharatanatyam into a modern age alongside contemporary dance is undoubtedly a success…exploring this new medium through an adapted version of The Rite of Spring is thoroughly enjoyable.

…this is a luscious piece of art…Patel’s work embraces the percussive stamping of Bharatanatyam…at times her choreography weaves the dancers in and out of patterns like a murmuration of starlings…given his unconventional approach to ballet, I feel sure Nijinsky would approve.

The dancers were supremely tight as a unit and performed with relentless energy, intensity and focus. Their small hand gestures were like visual imagist poetry in suggesting new life…Seeta Patel is certainly onto something in looking at such exciting cultural fusions.

BEHIND THE ARRAS: (Birmingham)
Patel directs with a uniquely stunning vision. With Stravinsky’s century-old score as the influencing factor there is a presentation of Bharatanatyam to add a new dimension to the story of the beauty found at springtime…a vibrant, bold, exciting contemporary piece.

…confident, vivid and moving…

Stunning and visually enticing

Seeta Patel has created an evocative, visceral interpretation of The Rite of Spring

The six dancers performed with great energy and precision, effortlessly interweaving east and west dance styles to reveal new layers of Stravinsky’s powerful music in a thought-provoking and powerful interpretation.

Seeta Patel has created a work of impact and ambition which is further enhanced by committed and powerful performances by the ensemble of six dancers…tackling a classic takes great bravery, but in her commanding and utterly convincing interpretation, Patel has created a must-see epic.

The unbelievably intricate footwork characteristic of Bharatanatyam is executed with such speed, tight turns and forceful arm-work that I reel from its frenetic energy and urgency…the dancers’ extended fingers pulse like small daggers, faces remain calm yet expressive…exciting, dynamic.

The Rite of Spring
Seeta Patel's reimagining of The Rite of Spring - TEASER (2019)
Director & Choreographer:
Seeta Patel
Costume Design:
Jason & Anshu (India)
Lighting design:
Warren Letton
Sarah Shead
Hayley Youell