An NCPA Presentation
Odissi by Jhelum Paranjape & Smitalay
An Odissi presentation of Indian classical dance forms incorporates both these aspects—tandava (vigorous/masculine) and lasya (soft/feminine), offering a balance of cosmic energies. The tandav aspect is characterised by forceful movements while the lasya elements are represented by movements that are soft, fluid, and seem to merge into one another in a graceful manner. Tandav and lasya, revered in Indian classical dance forms, are associated mainly with Lord Shiva and his consort, Goddess Parvati. Along with Shiva, Parvati symbolises the harmonious union between the masculine and feminine forms of existence or the inextricable male and female beginning, known as the Ardhanarishwara, symbolic of the inseparability of the female and male energies, without which, the universe would be in a state of flux.
Dancers from Smitalay will depict these two aspects with their presentation of Ardhanarishwara, based on shlokas written by Shankaracharya, choreographed by Kelucharan Mohapatra, and music composed by Raghunath Panigrahi. After the presentation of Ardhanarishwara, the dancers will elaborate on the tandav lasya aspects in different ways.
Smitalay was founded by Jhelum Paranjape in memory of her childhood friend, Smita Patil. It is the first dance school established in Mumbai that follows the style of Kelucharan Mohapatra. It is not just a dance school; it is an institute that showcases various intellectual, social, political and feminist ideologies with the help of graceful, divine movement. It lives by the belief that dance should not be an elitist preserve; it should be gifted to all. Here, Odissi is taught to all those who wish to learn, young and old. Younger ones become proficient dancers; older ones lead a happier life, dance being part of it. There are a number of underprivileged students coming, who are charged a nominal fee. Lastly, it is an institute born out of love, and has strived to spread this love, one beat at a time.
Bharatanatyam by Geetha Venkateswar & her disciples
It encompasses the strength of a woman, from divinity to the present.
Bharatanatya Kalalaya, Mumbai, was founded over 27 years ago by Geetha Venkateswar, a distinguished artiste, teacher and choreographer, a disciple of Rajalakshmi Venkateswar of Kolkata, who belongs to the school of renowned guru, K.N. Dhandayuthapani Pillai. She has performed at the Soorya Dance Festival, India Festival at Pondicherry, among others, and for Doordarshan as well. She has over 75 arangetrams to her credit and has been conferred several titles and honours such as Shivali Nritya Shiromani, Natya Ratna and the Kamala Power Women award. Her students have performed at several prestigious festivals and venues including the Kala Ghoda Arts Festival in Mumbai, the Delhi Tamil Sangam, Natyanjali festivals at major temples in southern India and in various sabhas during the Chennai Dance Festival.
Tara – the Queen of Kishkinda
Bharatanatyam production by Rajashree Warrier
Wife of Vaali, mother to Angada. Wife of Sugreeva, Queen of Kishkinda. Tara was all these. Yet she was someone else too. Exploring Tara, her emotional journey.
Concept, Music & Choreography: Rajashree Warrier
Rajashree Warrier has given performances in many major venues in India and abroad. Her dance productions are a testament to her in-depth knowledge of dance, music and literature. Acclaimed as a creative artiste whose work reveals the infinite spaces within the traditional form, Warrier bases her dance on the principle that Bharatanatyam is an evocative language where the dancer who has mastered and internalised the idiom can write her personal dance poetry. Training under V Maithili laid the foundation of a splendid vocation. Later the erudite Jayanthi Subramaniam inspired the sublimities of Bharatanatyam in her formative years. She is a Doordarshan Bharatanatyam artiste and is also an empanelled artiste of the ICCR. She is the founder director of Uttarika, a centre for the performing arts focusing on research and training in Bharatanatyam, Carnatic music and experimental theatre.
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