Hurry Up It's Time: The Waste Land Project, Stanford University
"...finding hope in chaos.... whirlwind of sensations...
Accompanying the beautiful choreography is a spectacle on par with other performances in The Waste Land Project, all of which have been stunning. Haunting, original guitar music changes to suit each scene, ranging from bluesy funk to distorted space-age noise, and clips from T.S. Eliot reading his own poem interject periodically. Lights play into the equation, too, resulting in a sensory experience that complements each segment of the choreography: as a pair of dancers moves together, the stage is dappled in soft circles of blue light as the sound of raindrops plays; the tinkling of dancers' anklet bells is accompanied by a maelstrom of swirling flashlight beams as dancers run from an explosion."
- Monica Miklas, Stanford Daily, 3/9/09
PDDC Season at Danspace Project, NYC
"What was new about her blending of the Indian classical dance form of Bharata Natyam with Western modern and jazz dance was its departure from the usual look of ritual. And she has found the perfect interpreters in her [five] dancers, whose seamless blending of the new and old was filled with funny and touching nuances of personality..."
- Jennifer Dunning, New York Times, 10/27/07
Parijat Desai and group had the entire audience stunned with their
remarkably fresh and strong presentation of contemporary dance. Quiet/ Fire,
a musing upon the different spiritual perceptions of the role of a warrior,
had the freshness of a dream. Dressed in elegant cream costumes and
executing martial movements, the dancers established the atmosphere of
intense physical discipline and austerity.
- Aniruddh Vasudevan,
…Movements suggested a practised abandon…fluidity belied the precise
hand movements that seemed to slice through the air. The magnificent thing
was the use of space within which the exploration of body and soul crossed
- Chitra Mahesh, The Hindu (national newspaper), 12/3/04
That dance can be a healing art was proved again at Skirball Cultural
Center….Making felicitous use of the Mark Taper Courtyard in the
site-specific series, choreographer Parijat Desai, in collaboration with
Liam Clancy, Iddrisu Saaka, and Denise Uyehara, performed…an elegiac
take on the notion of peace.
- Victoria Looseleaf, Los Angeles Times, 5/6/03
Parijat Desai…amazed the audience with her astounding
flexibility and deft movement. Drawing from modern dance, yoga and classical
Indian styles, Desai integrated her style with...[a] speech by a Buddhist
monk and peace activist named Thich Nhat Hanh…
- Avy Mallik, AsianWeek, 7/18/02
Rhythms Crackle in this "Quiet/Fire"….her new collaboration
with composer-percussionist Kenny Endo matched thematic relevance with
technical sophistication…. Desai’s trio ‘Rewired’
and the solo piece ‘Padam’ cleverly juxtaposed idioms to physicalize
the complexity (and humor) of multiculturalism…
- Lewis Segal, Los Angeles Times, 10/8/01
Her skills are forged from the gurus of Bharatha Natyam and
modern American dance. With a great potential for expanding the form Parijat
Desai tests the boundaries of movement, rhythm and technique. Her repertoire
of bold, definitive interpretations reflect a South Asian milieu and a
modern connotation. There is always continuity, no stumbling despite the
adoption of a new format. Clarity and flair predominate and audiences
do not feel alienated, nor is the dancer displaced.
- Prem Kishore, India Post, 9/8/00
Desai, in "Listening, Part 2," proved lithe and graceful, incorporating
yogic moves with spins and leaps, her delicate hands weaving patterns
in the air. In…"Mudakarath: Invocation of Lord Vinayaka"…a
radiant Desai again offered solid rhythmic footwork.
- Victoria Looseleaf, Los Angeles Times, 5/15/00
Whether fluttering her arms, lithely leaping or directing playful moves
to ‘50s samba music (in a grainy video), dancer-choreographer Parijat
Desai is major talent who bears watching.
...her distinct vision proved an enchanting blend of modern, jazz and
the Indian classical dance called Bharata Natyam.
Desai adhered to the rigors of Bharata Natyam. Offering clean, crisp,
rhythmic attacks, coupled with solid one-legged balancing, she embodied
the grace and strength of the South Indian idiom.
Desai proved a powerhouse in…her own work in progress. Joined by
Cindy Chung and Angela Mattox—to a techno/sitar/drum track—this
piece surged with excitement.
Desai’s voice, fresh and vibrant, is a welcome one.
- Victoria Looseleaf, Los Angeles Times, 10/23/99
[UCLA’s World Arts and Cultures Department] is also a place where
students—Parijat Desai, for example—can make big breakthroughs.
As an M.F.A. in choreography student, the Indian-born, American-bred Desai
worked to find a bridge between her Indian heritage and her modern dance
training. For her final M.F.A. concert, she created a new hybrid choreographic
- David Gere, UCLA Magazine, Winter 1999
Winningly fusing Bharata Natyam with modern dance and ballet,
Parijat Desai gave us “Thaka Dimi,” a fluid, yet propulsive
duet between her and Cassandra Chae.
- Victoria Looseleaf, Los Angeles Times, 7/26/99
[Some] Indian choreographers have adapted Western ideas with more sophistication.
Desai, a graduate student at the University of California at Los Angeles,
showed…duets she had made effectively fusing elements of East and
- Wilma Salisbury, Dance Critic, The Plain Dealer (Cleveland),