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Tapas Cultural Foundation presents the VIDHYA TAPASVI AWARD for 2020-21 to nagaswaram vidwan Desur DSD Selvarathinam (music) and Bharatanatyam exponent Nithyalakyani Vaidyanathan for their service towards bhakthi oriented classical Fine Arts, on March 11, 2021 at 6.30pm webcast over the TAPAS social media channels.

The Music Academy  Madras has many journals from the 90s that they want to give to musicians and researchers who will value it.  If you are interested in taking copies kindly contact Sathya (96770 44561) in the academy library.

Odissi dancer Ileana Citaristi received PRABASI BHASHA  SAMMAN 2021 on Feb 21, 2021 at the 7th International Mother Language Conclave.

ABHAI celebrates its 32nd Anniversary with presentation of the annual ABHAI awards on March 20, 2021 at Narada Gana Sabha, Chennai.
NATYA KALANIDHI: Prof.A. Janardhanan, senior professor, Kalakshetra (gold medal, citation and Rs.25,000)
GANDHARVA NIPUNA: M.S. Kannan, senior violin accompanist for Bharatanatyam (gold medal, citation and Rs.10,000)
NARTHAKA NIPUNA: G.Narendra, senior performer/teacher and director of Avigna Dance Company (gold medal, citation and Rs.10,000)
NRITHYA PERUNJYOTI: Parvathi Ravi Ghantasala, senior Bharatanatyam exponent, acharya and Arts administrator (gold medal, citation and Rs.10,000)

Kolkata based Chidakash Kalalay under Kalalamandalam Piyal Bhatacharya, conferred the CHIDAKASH SAMMAN on art critic/scholar Dr.Utpal K Banerjee on Feb 17, 2021 as the first time award from this year. Other awardees include Probir Guha (theatre), Meena Banerjee (music) and Anita Mallick (Bharatanatyam).

KALAIMAMANI for 2019: Madurai R Muralidharam, Maya Shyamsunder, Parvathi Balasubramanian,TM Sreedevi
KALAIMAMANI for 2020: A Janardhanan, Kavitha Charles, Sreelatha Vinod, Vijayalakshmi Boopathy, Aparna Ramesh
Sound engineer Sai Shravanam (2019), KN Ramaswamy of Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan and M Murali (2019), Y Prabhu of Krishna Gana Sabha and J Balasubramanian of JB Cultural Foundation (2020), musicians Nirmala Rajasekhar (veena), Sikkil Gurucharan (vocal) and Anil Srinivasan (piano) also received the KALAIMAMANI.
PURATCHI THALAIVI DR.J.JAYALALITHA SPECIAL KALAIMAMANI AWARD: Ambika Kameshwar (2019) and Parvathi Ravi Ghantasala (2020)
BALASARASWATHI AWARD (dance): Alarmel Valli (2019) and Chandra Dhandayuthapani (2020) 
The awards (made of 5 sovereigns gold medal - 22ct, 40gms - with a certificate of Merit) were given on February 20, 2021 by the Tamilnadu Chief Minister in Chennai.

Sangkari Balasubramaniam, disciple of Thanjavur Lakshmikaantham and Thanjavur Doraikannammal passed away on February 17, 2021.

Documentary filmmaker Vinu Vasudevan and Kuchipudi exponent Madhavi Mallampalli have made a film titled NRITHYA GANDHARVA: – PROF. C. V. CHANDRASEKHAR, HIS ART & LIFE that was released on Jan 24, 2021 on YouTube.

The KERALA STATE KATHAKALI AWARD goes to Vazhengada Vijayan for 2019 and to Sadanam Balakrishnan for 2020.
The KERALEEYA NRITTA-NATYA PURASKARAM to V.P. Dhananjayan and Shanta Dhananjayan for 2019 and to Vimala Menon for 2020.
The PALLAVUR APPU MARAR PURASKARAM to Machad Ramakrishnan Nair for 2019 and to Keezhkoottu Aniyan Marar for 2020.
All three awards comprise a purse of Rs.1 lakh, plaque, and citation.

On February 7, 2021 during the Dhauli-Kalinga Festival, Odisha, the BUDDHA SAMMAN was awarded to Pt Gopal Chandra Panda (Odissi and Hindustani vocalist) and GURU GANGADHAR PRADHAN SMRUTI SAMMAN to Guru K. Ramarao Patra (veena player), Dr. Snehaprava Samantra (Odissi dancer), Shyamhari Chakra (journalist and dance critic) and Late Tarakanta Panda (sound designer & music arranger).

Mohiniattam dancer Methil Devika received the Kerala State KSHETRAKALASREE PURASKARAM 2020 from the Kerala Kshetrakala (Temple Arts) Akademy.

“AMERICAN MASTERS: TWYLA MOVES” that explores the iconic choreographer's storied career, will premiere March 26, 2021 on PBS. The documentary will feature interviews along with select footage of Tharp’s more than 160 choreographed works, “including 129 dances, 12 television specials, six major Hollywood movies, four full-length ballets, four Broadway shows and two figure skating routines.”

Bhaalu or Bagheera? 22 incredible acting roles and 12 creative roles in ENACTE CONSERVATORY's musical production of THE JUNGLE BOOK: RUDYARD'S REVISION with a socially conscious and environmentally sensitive script. The fully virtual musical will have its world premiere in June 2021.

Tridhara presented the LIFETIME ACHIEVEMENT AWARD to musician Pt Anup Jhalota on Feb 13, 2021 on the inaugural day of the 14th Guru Debaprasad Award Festival at Rabindra Mandap, Bhubaneswar. On Feb 15, the GURU DEBAPRASAD AWARD 2020 was given to Aruna Mohanty (Odissi, Bhubaneswar), Guru Ghanakanta Bora (Sattriya, Assam) and Gopika Varma (Mohiniattam, Chennai). The GURU DEBAPRASAD PRATIVA AWARD 2020 went to Prof. Manoj Kumar Behera (Balasore), Prativa Panda (Bhubaneswar), Binod Chandra Sahu (Kandhamala), Palomi Mandal (Kolkata).

Mohiniattam dancer/mentor TARA RAJKUMAR is one of the 24 talented women nominated for the KINGSTON WOMAN OF THE YEAR AWARD 2021, Australia. Nominees of this award are women who are leaders in their field, who inspire others and who make a difference to the community through their exceptional professional or personal achievements. The Award will be presented at Kingston’s International Women’s Day ceremony hosted on 5 March 2021.

The 30th JK ARCHITECT OF THE YEAR AWARD for public building category was awarded to Indigo Architects for the NATARANI THEATRE project of Darpana, Ahmedabad.

Kathakali artiste Mathoor Govindan Kutty passed away on Feb 4, 2021 after a brief illness from post Covid complications. He was 81. 
He was born on Oct 5, 1940 in Nedumudi village in Kerala. He received his initial training in Kathakali from Nedumudi Kuttappa Paniker and subsequently studied under Kurichi Kunjan Panicker and Ambalapuzha Shekhan at the Mathoor Kalari. He specialized in Kathakali stree vesham under Kudamaloor Kurunakaran Nair at the Thekkan Chitta Gurukulam. In a career spanning six decades, he portrayed female leads in performances along with Kalamandalam Gopi, Mankulam Vishnu Namboothiri, Kalamandalam Krishnan Nair, and other prominent artistes. The popular stree vesham characters he portrayed are of Kunthi of Karnasapatham, Damayanthi of Nalacharitham and Panchali of Duryodhana Vadham. Mathoor Govindan Kutty gained wide respect as a teacher and trained a number of Kathakali performers at the Kudamaloor Kalakendra. For his outstanding Kathakali performances, he has been conferred several honours by reputed organizations in Kerala like Kerala Kalamandalam award, Kerala Sangeetha Nataka Akademi award, Madavoor Vasudevan Nair award, Kerala State Award for the best Kathakali artiste (2011), Guru Chengannoor Award (1993) and the Sangeet Natak Akademi Award for his contribution to Kathakali.

Mumbai based senior dance critic Satish Mehta passed away on February 9, 2021. He was 86.
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Theater director and founder of Rang Vidushak, a theatre group in Bhopal, Bansi Kaul passed away on February 6, 2021.
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Kathakali actor SADANAM HARIKUMAR (also a sculptor, painter, Bharatanatyam dancer, musician and composer) is honored with KERALA LALITHAKALA AKADEMI AWARD for 2020 for his sculpture titled ‘Karmayogam’ that shows a resurrected man with a wreath on his chest and crows milling around. The six-foot sculpture depicts ramifications of life and death.

On 7th February 2021, APSARAS ARTS presented the REMEMBERING NEILA SATHYALINGAM FESTIVAL 2021, at the Stamford Arts Centre, Singapore. In 2019, Apsaras Arts instituted an endowment award to recognize a high achiever in Indian classical dance in Singapore. The award includes a citation and a cash purse. This year, Apsaras Arts presented the NEILA SATHYALINGAM MEMORIAL ENDOWMENT AWARD to Meera Balasubramanian.

Guru VIRALIMALAI R MUTHUKANNAMAL, the senior most performer and artiste from a family that has served six generations for the arts, received the TAMILNADU STATE ART AND CULTURE AWARD at Pudukottai (Tamilnadu) on Feb 5, 2021. It is a historic moment for dance history because in post independent India for the first time, a hereditary dancer has been awarded as ‘SADIR ARTIST.’

Leicester based NILIMA DEVI’s CENTRE FOR INDIAN CLASSICAL DANCE (CICD) celebrates 40 years throughout 2021, by sharing special performances, interviews, seminars and workshops by Indian dance artists, musicians, academics & alumnis from UK & around the globe.

Dr. I Wayan Dibia, from Denpasar, Bali, is to be awarded the Padma Shri. Bali’s most influential Kecak dancer and scholar in the traditional Indonesian art form depicting chapters of the Ramayana, he heads his own dance company, GEOKS, acclaimed for its inventive dance creations.

PADMA SHRI for 2020: 70 year old Moozhikkal Pankajakshi, the only practitioner of Nokkuvidhya Pavakalli, a traditional puppetry art of Kerala

KARNATAKA KALASHREE, the State’s highest honour for dance, to be awarded by Karnataka Sangeeta Nrithya Academy to MADHU NATARAJ and PRAVEEN KUMAR for their contributions to dance.


The Padma awards have been announced. The PADMA SHRI for dance goes to Shashadhar Acharya (Chhau), Indira PP Bora (Sattriya), Vajira Chitrasena (Kandyan dance, Srilanka) and Purushottam Dadheech (Kathak).

Sonal Mansingh, Jatin Goswami, K.Kalyanasundaram Pillai, Radha Sridhar, Pasumurthy Ramalinga Sastry, Parameswaran Kuttan Chakkiyar, Surupa Sen, Gopika Varma

The General Council of the Sangeet Natak Akademi, the National Academy of Music, Dance and Drama, New Delhi at its meeting held on 26 June 2019 at Guwahati, Assam unanimously elected eminent personalities in the field of performing arts. The honour of Akademi Fellow carries a purse money of Rupees three lakh and Akademi Award carries Rupees one lakh besides a Tamrapatra and Angavastram.
Zakir Hussain, Sonal Mansingh, Jatin Goswami and K.Kalyanasundaram Pillai, for Sangeet Natak Akademi Fellow.
The General Council also selected 44 artists from the field of Music, Dance, Theatre, Traditional/Folk/Tribal Music/Dance/Theatre, Puppetry and Overall contribution/scholarship in the Performing Arts for the Sangeet Natak Akademi Awards for the year 2018. These 44 artists include three joint awards.
Dance: nine eminent artists have been selected for the Akademi Awards 2018, namely, Radha Sridhar for Bharatanatyam, Ishira & Maulik Shah (Joint Award) for Kathak, Akham Lakshmi Devi for Manipuri, Pasumurthy Ramalinga Sastry for Kuchipudi, Surupa Sen for Odissi, Tankeswar Hazarika Borbayan for Sattriya, Gopika Varma for Mohiniattam, Tapan Kumar Pattanayak for Chhau, Deepak Mazumdar for Contemporary Dance.
Theatre: Bhagawat A.S.Nanjappa -Yakshagana, A.M.Parameswaran Kuttan Chakkiyar -Kutiyattam.
Folk, puppetry: Anupama Hoskere, Puppetry (String), Karnataka, Hem Chandra Goswami, Mask Making, Assam.
Overall Contribution/Scholarship in the Performing Arts: Diwan Singh Bajeli and Puru Dadhich

Highlights ; Obituaries

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