When Vinitha Auntie asked us if we wanted to be a part of Seonee again, it brought back lots of memories from the first production. In 2009, we were both in the show – Arati as Mowgli and Samyu as Bageera – and we had grown to love this particular story. We were excited to pass it on to a new set of girls and to evolve from performers to directors.
Early in the summer, we finally got to meet our new group of girls; eighteen talented and excited dancers who were eager to learn the ways of the jungle. We were looking forward to putting together the official cast list, making sure that we played to the strengths of each of our girls. It was our responsibility to run rehearsals smoothly, making sure each girl learned their moves well. However, our job did not end there. The most challenging, and in our opinions the most important, aspect of the show is forging a connection between each of the girls and the persona of the animal that they are depicting. We encouraged the girls to not feel self conscious of some of the sillier moves and to internalize
the role that they were portraying. Both of us recalled how challenging this was for us and tried to use our past experiences to motivate them.
We still remember the day fi ve years ago when Anusha Akka and Narendra Anna sat us down to listen to the music and to talk about their vision for this show. It was inspiring and helped motivate us during rehearsals. Our goal has been to pass on this same vision to our new cast and we hope that they have fallen in love with Seonee just as we both have.
Our hope is that as you watch this show, you are captivated by this story, the vision that inspired it, and the new cast that brought it to life.
Samyu Rao and Arati Warrier
Natyalaya Special Events Coordinators