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Wednesday, 14 December 2011



Bharatha Natyam and Tamil culture

The folk dance form is regarded as Desi dance form, because it belongs to a certain Pradesh. It reflects religion, regional customs and traditions of the selective area. These folk dance forms differ from region to region, place to place, and district to district. Hence the folk dance varies from place to place.

Pristine purity of dancing movements

Similarly a dance form which transcends the international barriers acquires worldwide recognition, which is known as Margi. This Margi dance form is deeply rooted in culture, tradition, philosophy, and religion. Bharatha Natyam is certainly a Margi dance form.

It has a well refined and highly sophisticated art form. Bharatha Natyam is a Tamil Classical dance form based on Hindu philosophy, Hindu traditions and Hindu culture. Besides, Bharatha Natyam is totally based on the Tamil Language, yet some of the Kirthanams, songs, surajathi and Varnam items are in Telugu language, because until the year 1953, Madras presidency and Andhra state were together. Surajathi was only in Carnatic music but not included in the Bharatha Natyam. But now, some dancers adopt Surajathi for dance.

Bharatha Natyam is the classical dance form of the Tamils. It has its own grace, charm and standing in the international sphere. Wherever Bharatha Natyam is practised, it is expected to remain the same quality and norms.

This particular art form is not only followed and practised in India alone, but also preserved and practised by the expatriate Tamil community all over the world. Bharatha Natyam is often referred as ‘Bharatham’. This word is derived from the Tamil word ‘bavam’, ‘ragam’, and ‘Thalam'.

Traditional dance forms in any society must have certain norms and defined links with cultural, linguistic, regional and religious factors. These traditional dance forms generally have certain long-standing historical background and historical developments in different periods. Almost every traditional cultural dance form is systematically categorized into different steps, different hand gestures, eye movements neck movements and different names for different foot positions, and different foot movements. Each traditional dance form has some deep meaning. Traditional dancers vehemently stick within a certain limited framework.

It is not proper or possible to expect that in the modern era a certain modification could be done in the classical Bharatha Natyam. Every classical art form has its own well defined concepts. Inserting their own techniques by claiming some false allegations by certain individual dancers and dance teachers cannot be accepted. All these tactics are done in the present era to attract the maximum amount of audience.

Bharatha Natyam is basically a solo dance form. But now only it has become a group dance form. The main reason behind this is to accommodate more performers together on the stage.

Bharatha Natyam is often regarded as the state classical dance of Tamil Nadu. However the Tamils all over the world preserve and practice, and carry out this art form with deep devotion and dedication as their own asset.

Even some of the traditional dance forms like Russian Ballet, western dance forms, Eastern dance forms, South American dances, Far East Asian dance forms, and South East Asian dance forms, are systematically confined and defined dance techniques. Each traditional form has its own distinguish makeup, stage decorations, distinguish costumes and selective ornaments. Most ornaments have certain names as well as certain significance for the purpose of usefulness.

At the end of the last quarter of the 20th century, generally a new trend has been penetrated into almost all the classical dance forms. The trend has developed by so called modern dance choreographers. They insert their numerous own ideas, and they introduce their own creativity into these dances. Besides they borrow techniques from numerous other traditional dance forms. They mainly borrow the nuances, techniques, steps, costumes, ornaments, and makeup from various, other traditional dance forms.



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