Home Editorial ‘Prerna The Inspiration’: The dance of a mother and her autistic child

‘Prerna The Inspiration’: The dance of a mother and her autistic child

If you’re thinking of how to spend Valentine’s Day, what about catching a special dance presentation with your loved ones?

Called Prerna The Inspiration, the performance will offer the audience a sneak peek into the everyday life of an autistic child and her mother’s needs to tend to her.

Inspired by true events, the idea of the dance came from Jegadeswari Krishnan, who is the producer and a mother of a child on the autism spectrum herself.

She expressed her personal experience to Sandhya Manoj, a leading Odissi dancer, and also a yoga teacher who has dealt with autistic children.

Manoj then developed the idea and put it into a dance form.

Krithika Ramachandran, a Bharatanatyam dancer was brought in and the duo combined a mixture of dance steps from Odissi and Bharatanatyam, and fused in theatre scenes into the production.

Jegadeswari said the reason why she wanted to do a dance featuring an autistic child is because many people don’t know what an autistic child has to go through, although they have heard of the term autism.

“Sometimes in malls, when an autistic child throws a fuss, parents would react by hitting their child, and that is when you know that something is not right.

“That is why this dance will be told through the lens of an autistic child — what sounds can evoke delight or annoyance to them, and to understand them as human beings.”

The different moods reflected in the movements and facial expressions of the dancers. — Picture courtesy of Facebook/Abhaya

She said another factor as to why she organised the dance was to help lift the financial burden of a couple whose daughter is diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), and have to pay for her ongoing therapy sessions.

The couple managed to send their daughter to a special needs school in Petaling Jaya since October last year, where she has shown signs of improvement in her motor skills, but they still need financial help to sustain her classes.

The show will be held on February 14 at Shantanand Auditorium, Temple of Fine Arts, Kuala Lumpur and tickets will be sold at RM100, RM60 and RM40.

All proceeds from ticket sales will go towards the child’s therapy sessions.

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