Natya will take a major step in its artistic life on October 8, 2011, with the world premiere of The Flowering Tree at Chicago's Harris Theater. This will be the first time Natya has performed its own bill at this prestigious venue. Conceived and choreographed by Natya founder and artistic director, Hema Rajagopalan and Natya associate artistic director and principal dancer, Krithika Rajagopalan, The Flowering Tree will be a truly international, multicultural production, exploring timely, cross cultural concerns about humanity's relationship to the natural world. At the center of The Flowering Tree will be this question: why do we let ourselves be driven through life by fear instead of love, and what are the consequences of this? Moral uplift has always been a key component of Natya's work, which seeks to raise awareness of universal human values like honesty, integrity, courage and compassion for the afflicted and unfortunate. The Flowering Tree will draw on the poetic translations of the acclaimed scholar and poet, A.K. Ramanujan, who served on the faculty of the University of Chicago and was a MacArthur Fellow. Following its Chicago premiere, The Flowering Tree will tour to regional and national venues.
The Sara Lee Foundation is the Lead Sponsor of The Flowering Tree.