Excerpt from an email written April 17/2008
Look at the flow of the dress, and its mani-folds….just close your eyes and imagine how it would span out like a butterfly wing. With the churidar pants, it makes dance poses and movements much more defined, placing more emphasis on lower leg and feet movement. You know some of the very expressive mujra dances, each small expression counts, even the tip of the finger bent slightly backward can put meaning to a dance. That’s why these dances are so special to me. And why I would choose expressive Mujra dances or lyrical dances (the classic ones) over Hip Hop, RnB, Flamenco, Bellydance and Jazz (all dance types I have experienced and performed).
So this outfit, tight along the arms, and down the thighs and lower feet allows definition in the dance, and compensates for the flair of the dress that does not hold the figure (also crucial). That is particularly interesting in this dress (and its equivalent) is in a performance, it directs the viewer to lower leg and feet movements as well as hand movement, taking the viewer away from the body (centre of gravity and the largest surface area) to the more subtle and specific movements of the hand, finger, arm, feet, ankle and knees. You see the body in Kathak and Bharatnatyam performances cannot exude the same specificity. And because of its large surface area and bulk, it cannot carry the same subtleties as the finger, arms, feet and ankles.