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NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC LIVE | Sandesh Kadur: Wild Cats of India
Kleinhans Music Hall is pleased to welcome Sandesh Kadur as part of the National Geographic Live 2023 series! New for this season, the series will take place in the main auditorium at Kleinhans so audiences can enjoy the cushy seats, the wonderful ambiance and reserve their seats in advance!
Sandesh Kadur first encountered a wild cat in his native India as a teenager—after sitting in a tree for hours under a full moon, a leopard walked directly under him. The experience sparked a fascination that led him to spend his career documenting the country’s unmatched diversity of wild cats. With landscapes spanning the towering Himalaya, arid plains, and dense jungles, India is home to 15 species of wild cats, more than any other country in the world. While many of its big cats are well known and thoroughly documented, Kadur is on a mission to highlight the country’s lesser-known felines in order to protect their future.
Finding and filming India’s often elusive small cats challenges Kadur’s patience, natural history knowledge, and skills as a photographer and filmmaker. He traveled to remote villages in the frigid Himalaya in search of the grumpy-faced Pallas’s cat, whose tiny size made it extraordinarily difficult to track. His pursuit of a fishing cat, which jumps into water to catch its prey and has learned to thrive alongside human habitation, brought him to one of India’s most densely populated regions. And he spent years attempting to capture images of the mysterious clouded leopard, considered the evolutionary link between big and small cats, in the wild.
Through Kadur’s captivating images and video, get an up-close look at a world of wild cats you’ve never seen before.
BAFTA Award-winning filmmaker and National Geographic Fellow Sandesh Kadur creates documentary films that have aired worldwide on prominent networks such as National Geographic, the BBC, Netflix, Discovery Channel, and Animal Planet. He is a Senior Fellow of the International League of Conservation Photographers. Through the use of images both still and moving, Kadur hopes to harness the power of nature education as a catalyst for long-term change. His goal is to inspire his audience to protect and appreciate what remains of our wilderness. He is also the Founder/Director of Felis Creations – a media and visual arts company based in Bangalore that focuses on creating content that inspires conservation.
Kadur’s work spans from the elusive snow leopard in the Himalaya to the Okavango Delta in Botswana and the endangered Kemp’s Ridley turtles in Mexico. He is the producer of a three-part docuseries for National Geographic titled “Wild Cats of India” and “India’s Wild Leopards.” He is also the co-author of two books: Sahyadris: India’s Western Ghats—A Vanishing Heritage (2005) and Himalaya—Mountains of Life (2013). His first documentary, Sahyadris: Mountains of the Monsoon (2002), which was accompanied by his first book, earned critical acclaim while drawing attention to one of the world’s top biodiversity hotspots and helped convince UNESCO to name the Western Ghats a World Heritage Site in 2012.
Kadur’s work has won a slew of prestigious international awards, including a 2017 EMMY nomination and the 2017 BAFTA Award for his work on BBC’s Planet Earth II. In 2013, he received the Nature’s Best Windland Smith Rice Award and the North American Nature Photographers (NANPA) Vision Award in recognition of early career excellence and continuation of vision and inspiration to others in nature photography, conservation, and education. He has also won the International Conservation Photographer Award (2012), CIWEM Environmental Photographer of the Year (2008), Gold REMI Award for Creative Excellence (2008), multiple International Wildlife Film Festival Merit awards, and was nominated twice for a Green Oscar at the Wildscreen Film Festival, among many other awards and nominations.
Kadur hopes that his photographs and documentaries will reveal places and species people rarely see and will inspire new passion to protect them.