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Smrithi Patham: Dhananjayans’ Affect on Bharatanatyam’s Evolution

Smrithi Patham: Dhananjayans’ Affect on Bharatanatyam’s Evolution


Natyacharyas V.P. Dhananjayan and Shanta Dhananjayan

Natyacharyas V.P. Dhananjayan and Shanta Dhananjayan
| Picture Credit score: Particular Association

When artistes with a profession graph spanning many years determine to go on a visit down reminiscence lane to share excerpts from their pioneering works, the end result is attention-grabbing, because it showcases artwork that has developed over a time period. Smrithi Patham, a presentation by Bharatakalanjali, the dance college of the Dhananjayans, at Krishna Gana Sabha was a compilation of sequences from a couple of choose productions choreographed by the dance couple.

The choreographic patterns supplied an perception into the adjustments which have taken place in group choreography over the previous few many years. There have been no extra inputs reminiscent of units and props, lighting design, or a soundscape. The choreography used solely the essential adavus and physique actions in different permutations to speak the texture and flavour of every music.

Six excerpts from their repertoire had been chosen as examples of the variability explored. An providing of prayer got here within the type of an invocatory quantity, Natarajaanjali, taken from the prelude to Nandanar Charitham, choreographed by them in 1982.

An anecdote in regards to the creation of a chunk referred to as ‘Nritta Swaravali’, a rhythmic dance for musical notes, was informative. Mridangist T V Gopalakrishnan had composed a easy musical notice to the beat of a operating practice throughout one in every of their travels. Dhananjayan embellished it with distinctive mnemonics fitted to dance. Initially danced by Shanta and Dhananjayan highlighting the tandava and lasya points, throughout this present, it was offered with finesse by two younger dancers Anand Sachidanand and Srinivas. Excellent footwork, synchrony and adavu patterns marked their recital.

The folksy Kummi and Malar pandattam from their manufacturing ‘Valli Thirumanam’ and Raas from ‘Thyagaraja Vaibhavam’ had been chosen for the group dynamics. The actions had been sombre, a distinction to the colourful actions in vogue now.

Narrative exploration with a contact of humour got here within the Sethubandanam sequence from ‘Ramanatakam’, which careworn upon the significance of Aangikabhinaya. The emotional spotlight was the Ashoka-Sanghamitra confrontation scene from their 1978 manufacturing ‘Ashoka Sanghamitra’.

‘Smrithi Patham’ reiterated Bharatnatyam’s vocabulary is full in itself and may also help artistes create a visible language of aesthetic advantage.


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