In collaboration with 14-18 NOW, the UK’s arts programme for the First World War centenary, Edinburgh International Festival, Théâtre du Châtelet and Théâtre de la VilleKadamati brings together communities of all backgrounds and abilities to experience a collective creative process across two major European cities, Edinburgh and Paris.

Kadamati is a spectacular free outdoor mass performance that gives the opportunity for hundreds of dancers to perform Akram’s choreography, and celebrate the diversity and unity of the 21st century people. Marking the centenary of the final year of the First World War, this profound and moving piece draws on themes of identity, migration, and hope, with the support of the powerfully epic music by Nitin Sawhney.

At once spiritual and universal, Kadamati – meaning ‘clay’ in Bengali – conjures up the idea that we are somehow all connected, and it is vital to return to the essence of the ritual and the body as part of a unified movement.

The work was performed at the Palace of Holyroodhouse in Edinburgh, during the Edinburgh International Culture Summit, on 22 August 2018. Paris gathered 713 dancers in the forecourt of Parvis de l’hotel de Ville for their performances on 9 September 2018.

“The idea of having mass bodies performing in a ritualistic way, in different locations, reflects a beautiful part of where we have evolved to today.”



Artistic Director/Choreographer Akram Khan
Music composed by Nitin Sawhney

Mass Movement Director Jennifer Irons
Rehearsal Director Jose Agudo
Mass Rehearsal Director Jon Beney

Commissioned by 14-18 NOW, the UK’s arts programme for the First World War centenary

Partners Edinburgh International Festival, Théâtre du Châtelet, Théâtre de la Ville Paris

The choreography was originally commissioned by the Mayor of London for Big Dance 2016

Photo credit © Ryan Buchanan and © Jean-Louis Fernandez


Kadamati | Performance | Paris

Parvis de l'Hôtel de Ville, Paris, 9 September 2018.

Kadamati | Performance | Edinburgh

Holyrood Palace, Edinburgh, 22 August 2018.

Kadamati | Trailer

by Maxime Dos

Behind the scenes

You are about to leave the Akram Khan Company website to experience the creation of XENOS on our microsite.
For the best experience, we recommend that you visit the microsite on a desktop with your sound on and view it in full screen.
Continue to XENOS experience

Before you go, why not sign up to our mailing list..

Back to top