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Wednesday, 19 May 2010

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Lankan dance troupe applauded in India



 The Guru at Natya Kala Mandir is appreciated by one of the organisers

Lankan dancers perform in Chithambaram

 Lankan dancers in characteristic poses

Dancers in Abhinaya

It is customary in Lanka to applaud any visiting artistes or glamorous film stars to the hilt and also indiscriminately. But as turn of events a Lankan Dance Troupe- Natya Kala Mandhir- from Colombo is reportedly have been well received in Tamilnadu. This is something to be praised.

The Hindus all over the world observed and even celebrated the Maha Siva Rathri Day on March 14, this year is of particular significance as the observation of the vigil and celebration through dance in Chithambaram, a city in Tamilnadu where the famous historic Sivan temple is enshrined, was coincidental.

And Lord Siva, also known as Natarajah (King of Dance) is the deity worshipped in awe there. Dance is a form of expression of Bhakthi among the Hindus. Bharatha Natyam (not to be pronounced as Bhaaratha Natyam as usually pronounced by the uninitiated) is one form of dances performed to honour the God of Cosmic Dance - Natarajah.

In this connection please read Ananda Coomaraswamy's monumental work The Dance of Shiva for an understanding of the significance of Lord Shiva's Dance. It was in Chithambaram that the dancers of that town presented the 'Natya Anjali'. It was a festival where the artistes offered their worship through dance.

Dancers from various parts of India, including Lanka also performed in another town in Tamilnadu - Kumbakoanam. It was here on March 14 that the Lankan troupe performed their talents at the Aadhi Kumbeshwarar temple. It is reported that the performances were done in a grand scale. We understand that 20 students of Natya Kala Mandhir took part with the choreography done by the head of the instritute, Vasugi Jegatheeswaran. She is one of the well-known Bharatha Natyam dancers in Lanka in yesteryear and presently serves as a reputed teacher at the institute.

At this performance Arunanthy Arunan (vocalist) and V Jambunathan (mirudangam artiste) from Lanka participated.

The organizers of the event felicitated the Lankan artistes, we understand.

Back again in Chithambaram in the morning of March 15, a special pooja was held at the famous temple.

And in the evening the Lankan troupe performed a Natya Anjali. And the audience applauded their performance and felicitated them we are told. Apart from Bharataha Natyam, famous dancers from other parts of India presented different forms of dance like the Katahakali, Odissi and Kathak.

Later the Lankan toupe performed at the Pragadeeshwarar temple in Thanjavoor, another town of cultural importance in Tamilnadu.

It is learnt that this huge temple built by Raja Raja, the Chola King completes 1000th year of existence. It was here the 'Brahan Natyanjali' was held. Kalasuri Vasugy Jegatheeswaran directed (Nattuvaangam) this program in the evening. It was a spiritualistic and artistic production, we understand.

Apart from the names mentioned above, the names of the performers too should be included as a way of notice and recognition.

They were: Mangala Gautham, Vijitha Ratnam, Archana Kandasamy, Sinthooja Kandavel, Mirunalini Somasundara Iyer, Shyaama Thanarajah, Tharshika Rajendran, Ramya Reginald, Nivethini Manoharan, Thiviya Kitnamoorthy, Poorani Ravindra Moorthy, Harini Amrritha Visvanathan, Anuganga Kulennran, Saranya Sivasubramaniam, Archadha Sivakanthan, Rishmithaa Sivakanthan, Thilini Thanapala, Vyshnavee Maheshararatnam, Abhinya Kumaranathan and Braneiya Jeyanayagam, V. Jambunatahan, an Indian artiste Panapattu Venkatesan was the accompanist.

These events were jointly organized by the Chithambaram Natyanjali Trust, Music Drama Academy of New Delhi, Cultural Centre for the Southern Region, Annamalai University, Brahan Natyanjali, Trust of Tanjavoor, The Tourism Board of Tamilnadu and the Ministry of Indian Culture.

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