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I had the pleasure of sitting through the choreographed performance Queen-size two evenings ago at Khoj International Artists Association. It was an intensely challenging look at what one might call an extended moment in the night. Two figures in constant struggle with each other, undulate between harmony and discordance in a poetic display of physicality, tumult and emotional geography.

image credit: suresh pandey @khojstudios
image credits: suresh pandey @khojstudios

Choreographed by Mandeep Raikhy, the performance is set in the interior space of the bedroom. The delicate and simple curation of the atmosphere lends itself to the rigour of the performers. 

A day bed, also known as a charpoy and some incredibly clever light tapestry made up of hanging wine glasses become the stage for this violently affectionate play of the body-where two men act out the sensitive interactions of the bedroom amidst a context of individual, social and physical tension.

The sonic compositions that construct the soundspace of Queen-size lull us into an exacting presence with the performers. The continual drone and lower and higher frequencies harmonized repeatedly, creating a balanced sense of equilibrium and chaos throughout the duration of the performance.

At times hypnotic, at other times arresting. The accumulation of each bodily movement brought me closer to an understanding of the complicated dance we all participate in with the state, the self and society.

Ultimately, the evening’s performance was emotionally exhaustive. To observe the inner workings of two performers, so closely aligned, intimately exposing not only their vulnerabilities, but their strength amidst peering eyes was an act of extreme bravery on behalf of the whole creative team. Queen-size  boldly scripts the ongoing narrative of the state’s continued desire to legislate our most personal and intimate spaces. 


Queen-size will be touring across India till March 2017.