Burning Skin denounces racism in its various forms

1992 / 23 MINUTES

” Touching, forceful, sad and yet funny, this solo is completely original! A presentation filled with emotions and images, some of the most beautiful being of a dance right to the fingertips. “

Andrée Martin, Le Devoir, 1997

Roger Sinha choreographed in 1992 the success show Burning Skin in reaction to his personal experiences of racism. Inspired initially by the autobiographical text The Rainbow Sign, by British/Pakistani author Hanif Kureishi, Burning Skin is a reflection of Roger’s turbulent childhood and youth in the UK and Canada, shadowed by violence, racial confrontations and suppression of his Indian heritage.

A multiplicity of movement forms, such as Bharata Natyam, martial arts, ballet, modern dance, combined with theatre techniques have inspired the choreographer and were integrated into his improvisation based vocabulary.

As relevant today as it was back then, given the growing tide of nationalism and anti-immigration worldwide, the piece has won the unanimous praise of critics and spectators alike. Burning Skin denounces racism in many forms.

Dena Davida first presented this solo at Tangente. Read more about intercultural dance here: Kinetic crossroads: Chouinard, Sinha and Castello 

Read more in this Rungh Magazine article by Phil Roberts Burning Skin: Roger Sinha’s personal vocabulary of movement



October 2, 2018 -Festival of New Dance (with Mark Medrano), Saint John’s

March 31, 2017 – Harbourfront Centre-Fleck Dance Theatre (with Mark Medrano), Kalanidhi Festival, Toronto

September 12 and 18, 2015 – Maison de la culture Rosemont-La-Petite-Patrie, Quartiers Danses Festival, Montreal

1994 Television adaptation for the CBC SERIES In Performance


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The cast

Roger Sinha

Roger Sinha

Dancer, choreographer

Roger Sinha was born in England to an Armenian mother and an Indian father. He grew up in Canada where he graduated from the Toronto Dance Theatre, drawing inspiration from his cultural background to develop his unique language of movement and personal choreography. He draws his vocabulary from contemporary dance, martial arts, ballet with subtle hints of Barata-Natyam, Indian dance. “Sinha is a creative powerhouse whose onstage presence is as generous as it is captivating”- Voir, 1995. See full biography.


Choreography and dance / Roger Sinha  2017-2018 dancer / Mark Medrano / Text / Hanif Kureishi / Original music / Charmaine LeBlanc, Dino Giancola, voice Ganesh Anandan / Other music / Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan, Johann Strauss / Musical design and direction / Roger Sinha / Taj Mahal created by / Alain Cadieux / Wardrobe / Josée Gagnon / Lighting / Caroline Ross / Technical direction / Jack Pilon


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