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Krishna Gana Sabha presents
40th Natya Kala Conference
December 26-30, 2022 Chennai
Convenor: Rama Vaidyanathan

November 18, 2022

Presented by Krishna Gana Sabha, the 40th edition of the Natya Kala Conference conceived and curated by Bharatanatyam dancer Rama Vaidyanathan takes place from Dec 26 to 30 in Chennai at the sabha premises.

Indian classical dance in the now is a constant work-in-progress; in an eternal state of evolution, dynamic and travelling into unchartered territories and unknown heights. Honestly, this would never have been possible without the foundation it is laid and built upon - a deep-rooted history, grammar and ethos that allow for freedom and innovation within the framework.

In this edition of the Natya Kala Conference, titled Roots, from the vantage position where Indian classical dance is poised today, we dig deep and attempt to unearth, trace, and showcase the idea of where things come from. Roots will celebrate the beauty of genesis, the mystery of heritage and the lure of legacy that has stood the test of time.

The 40th edition of Natya Kala Conference is privileged to have the support of Rajika Puri, in honour of her mentor Indrani Rahman and the Art & Culture department of the Government of Tamilnadu.

Venue: Krishna Gana Sabha, T Nagar, Chennai

Please note that the Workshop for Dancers between December 27 and December 30, 8am - 9:15am are ticketed.

Link to buy the tickets

For any queries on tickets, please write to

40th Natya Kala Conference 2022

Day 1
Monday, December 26

9am: Mangala Isai by students of Tamilnadu Government District Music schools

9.30am to 11am: Inauguration
Invocation: Vachika Abhinaya by Ragini Chandershekar, Uma Sathyanarayanan and Dr S Vasudevan
Lighting of Lamp
Welcome Address by Saashwathi Prabhu
Curator's Address by Rama Vaidyanathan
Address by Guest of Honour & First Convenor of NKC, Dr Padma Subrahmanyam

11am to 11.50am: Inaugural Lecture
Breath and Rasa: Explicit & Implicit in the Natya Shastra by Dr Sreenath Nair with Rajaneesh Chakyar

12pm to 12.50pm: Movements and their Meanings - Delsarte's theory of Applied Aesthetics for Indian dance and theatre by Ramaa Bharadvaj

12:50pm to 1:30pm: Lunch

1.30pm to 2.30pm: Planted Seeds: Three senior artistes re-visit their memories with their gurus and mentors
Rajika Puri on Indrani Rahman
Padmini Ravi on KJ Sarasa
Dr Sandhya Purecha on Parvati Kumar

2.40pm to 3.40pm: Footprints of Aadal in Ancient Tamizh Literature by Dr S Raghuraman with Apoorva Jayaraman

3.45pm to 4.30pm: High Tea hosted by Krishna Gana Sabha

4.30pm to 6pm: Moksha: Celebrating the legacy of the Trinity by Usha RK, Nisha Rajagopalan, Karuna Sagari, Parshwanath Upadhye and Pavitra Krishna Bhat

Day 2
Tuesday, December 27

8am to 9.15am: Workshops for Dancers
Roots to Explore: Texts and textures of Hasta Abhinaya by S Jayachandran

9.30am to 9.50am: Bark to Bough
Legacy Of Rajarathnam Pillai by Ramya Ramnarayanan and disciples

10am to 10.50am: Roots, Entwined: Interlinking architecture, painting, sculpture and dance by Dr Choodamani Nandagopal

11am to 11.50am: Roots, In-depth: Integrating Kerala's indigenous arts into Mohiniattam by Bharati Shivaji

12pm to 12.50pm: An Overview of the History of Dance Patronage in India by Dr Anita R Ratnam
Followed by a discussion on dance patronage in the current scenario, challenges and politics
with Dr Ananda Shankar Jayant, Kavitha Ramu and Zakir Hussain

12.50pm to 1.30pm: Lunch

1.30pm to 2.45pm: Mahari: A journey from the Natya Mandir to the proscenium by Aruna Mohanty

Day 3
Wednesday, December 28

8am to 9.15am: Workshops for Dancers
Roots To Explore: An interactive talk on taking dance to the grassroots through the workshop demonstration model of SPICMACAY by Ashok Jain

9.30am to 9.50am: Bark To Bough, Legacy of Dr Vempati Chinna Satyam by Sailaja and disciples

10am to 10.50am: Roots, De-mystified: Unravelling the mysteries of Kathakali by Kaladharan Viswanath with Kalamandalam Adithyan

11am to 11.50am: Canopy: Extension of Bharatanatyam's branches outside Tamizhagam by Dr Parul Shah

12pm to 12.50pm: Kathak: Carrying echoes of Rajasthani literature and folk traditions by Prerana Shrimali

12.50pm to 1.30pm: Lunch

1.30pm to 2.45pm Deity and Dance: Ritual repertoire from Tanjore traditions by Dr Swarnamalya Ganesh with Niveda Aadithya

Day 4
Thursday, December 29

8am to 9.15am: Workshops for Dancers
Roots To Explore: Negotiating rhythm in dance by Kiran Subramanyam

9.30am to 9.50am: Bark To Bough
Legacy of Balasaraswati by Aniruddha Knight and Disciples

10am to 10.50am: Thanjavur Natyam: Roots of Sringara by Lakshmi Viswanathan

11am to 11.50am: Traveling Roots
Sattriya in changing spaces: Monks, pedagogy & performance by Anwesa Mahanta with Hari Prasad Saikia

12pm to 12.50pm: Set in Stone: Exploring the pan-Indian epigraphical history of dance through lecture, illustrations and performance by Dr Chithra Madhavan with Divya Shiva Sundar

12.50pm to 1.30pm:Lunch

1.30pm to 2.45pm: Mehefil-e-Raqs: Tawaiff repertoire from the Mughal era by Rani Khanam

Day 5
Friday, December 30

8am to 9.15am: Workshops for Dancers
Roots To Explore: Nritya Samskritam ---- Spotlight on ancient literature for dance by Shatavadhani Ganesh

9am: Tevaram by students of Tamilnadu Government District Music Schools

9.30am to 9.50am: Bark To Bough
Legacy Of Adyar K Lakshman by Nithyakalyani Vaidyanathan and Disciples

10am to 10.50am: Bala and Rukmini: Transnational legacies by Dr Avanthi Meduri

11am to 11.50am: Seeds of Abhinaya: Insights into the Telugu literary and dance traditions by Dr Anupama Kylash

12pm to 12.50pm: Inter-Weaves: An illustrated lecture on the interdependency of cinema and dance by Radhika Shurajit

12.50pm to 1.30pm: Lunch

1.30pm to 2.45pm: Colours of the Earth: Mahabharata in Dravidian Nadu by Dr VR Devika with Tamil traditional Koothu artistes

40th Natya Kala Conference 2022

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