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Dec 13, 2016

Battery Dance concludes tour of Sri Lanka

The world-renowned Battery Dance concluded its tour of Sri Lanka with a gala “Drums and Dance” performance in collaboration with Chandana Wickramasinghe’s Dancer’s Guild and Asoka Wickramaratne’s Naadro at Bishop’s College last night (Dec. 12).

This public show completed BatteryDance’s nearly two weeks of programs featuring exchanges with top Sri Lankan dance companies, honorary shows, and training workshops with local students.

“The American Embassy is proud to bring Battery Dance to showcase the strong cultural and people-to-people bonds between our two countries,” said U.S. Embassy’s Chargé d’Affaires Robert Hilton.

In 62 countries over the past 40 years, the New York-based Battery Dance has worked in difficult places that suffer from violent conflicts and interethnic tensions. Its “Dancing to Connect” philosophy is used to bring those different communities together to promote artistic excellence, cultivate the young leaders of tomorrow, and make dance accessible to everyone.

Chargé d’Affaires Hilton stressed the company’s tour is not only a great opportunity for audiences to enjoy their artistry, but a key aspect of the Embassy’s cultural diplomacy.  “We share the same passion as the people of Sri Lanka for a united, democratic, and inclusive nation,” he added.

During its tour, Battery Dance performed its signature “Raag Durga” piece in the NatFest dance festival and held workshops for the master performers of Chitrasena Dance Company.

Traveling to Kandy, Battery Dance offered a free performance at Gateway College and classes with University of Peradeniya students.  Finally, founder and artistic director Jonathan Hollander held a public lecture on the business aspects of the arts, while production manager Barry Steele spoke about lighting and sound design.

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