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Dec 2, 2016

edited by Anita E. Cherian, Associate Professor, School of Culture and Creative Expressions, Ambedkar University Delhi.
Published by Tulika Books in association with Gati Dance Forum
Tilt Pause Shift engages the knotty question of dance in today's India. It is an investigation of movement, and, in particular, of a 'marked' subset of that - 'dance'. In its many peregrinations it seems to ask, what kind of movement is dance? Most pointedly, it performs the question: What is dance in India? And, relatedly, what is it to dance in India?

In its design, the book offers the reader the opportunity to manoeuvre between the analytic registers of the essays, and the sensuous and performative choreographic portraits. Interspersed between these are curated photo-spreads and imagistic representations of the material traces of performances-in-process. The latter, which take the form of diary notes, sketches and photographs, enhance the reader's encounter with performances by providing another experiential layer. These residues of performance highlight the significance of process, contingency and reflection to choreographic composition. They are also, importantly, archives of performance in miniature, which reference the processes of the artist and her ensemble, and also perhaps, intriguingly, await reactivation in performance or discourse at some later date. In both the essays and the choreographic portraits, the effort has been to show the diversity of practices and methodologies that comprise the movement ecosphere that we inhabit today.

The contributors to the book include Ranjana Dave, Navtej Johar, Sundar Sarukkai, Brahma Prakash, Paromita Vohra, Padmini Chettur, Abantee Dutta, Shabari Rao, Rajyashree Ramamurthy, Justin McCarthy, Arushi Singh, Veena Basavarajaiah, Rose Merin, Himalay K. Gohel, Parvathi Ramanathan, Anita E. Cherian, Gabriele Wittmann and Esther Sutter. The choreographic portraits have been edited by Gabriele Wittmann and Esther Sutter.

The book has been published with support from Pro Helvetia- Swiss Arts Council, Royal Norwegian Embassy, Goethe-Institut/ Max Mueller Bhavan and Raza Foundation.

9.5 x 7.5 inches
248 pages
Hardback/colour illustrations
ISBN 978-93-82381-85-3
INR 1950 (Available at INR 950 before 31 December 2016)

To order copies of the book at Rs 950 (excluding postage), please write to: / / or call +91 9971406113


Oct 18, 2016

NARTANAM- Volume: XVI, No. 3
A special on Kutiyattam celebrating 50 years of the Sanskrit theatre coming out of its traditional performing spaces, the Kuthambalams, and the performance of the art thrown open to castes other than the traditional performers, the Chakyars and the Nangiyars.
CONTENTS, editorial, article stubs, and the review section can be seen on


Oct 7, 2016

Drishti Magazine, Issue 17, 2016 carries an array of exclusive features and interviews, in-depth, researched technical articles and information about past, current and forthcoming events in different parts of India. Drishti aims to serve as a source of inspiration to students of dance and music by carrying in its pages the insights of erudite scholars and the contribution of the legends of music and dance.

Some of the articles featured in this issue:
-Pre-requisites of Rasabhinaya by Shatavadhani Dr R Ganesh,
-'Hero,' the classification of Nayakas by Dr. Pappu Venugopala Rao
-Tribute to the legend Kalanidhi Narayan by Dr Sunil Kothari
-Guru Radha Sridhar looks back over a long and illustrious life in dance, in interview.
-Beginning a new series by Arjun Bharadwaj - articles based on the Natyasastra.
- Guru Lalitha Srinivasan expounds on the Mysore Bani in BN.
-'Dance as a Profession' - artists express themselves on major issues related to art, especially dance, dancers share their views on choosing dance as a profession…compiled by Anuradha Vikranth.
-Among other regular features, Sneha Kappanna continues with her 'Folk form of Karnataka'; in this issue she introduces us to 'Nagari - The Talking Drums of Karnataka'.
-'Chronicles of our times' by Janani Murali, 'Aagamokta Devalayagalalli Nritya' by Manorama BN, Round up compiled by Shama Krishna etc.
Annual subscriptions for the print magazine are available for a nominal amount.
To subscribe
Contact for queries.


August 25, 2016

On August 12, 2016, the book NRITTA YAATRA (Dhananjayande kalayum jeevitavum), Malayalam translation of Tulsi Badrinath's 'Master of Arts' (English) was released. M.A. Baby (CPM Polit Bureau Member, former Education Minister, Kerala Govt) released the book and K. Jayakumar (IAS), Vice Chancellor of Malayalam University, received the first copy. The Malayalam translation has been done by A. Prabhakaran.
Copies of this new Malayalam book edition are available @ Bharatakalanjali, Chennai.
Email your order to:
Price: In India - Rs.250 + Postage / Outside India - US $5 + Air Mail charge
English version


August 9, 2016

Kathakali Dance-Theatre, A Visual Narrative of Sacred Indian Mime
Authored by KK Gopalakrishnan, a well-known writer-photographer and a connoisseur specializing in Kerala performing arts traditions.

The book chronicles Kathakali's various facets—the acting, music and costumes, crucial contributions of the masters, momentous incidences, evolution of styles, riveting anecdotes and related socio-political issues affecting Kerala. It is a treasure trove of information for uninitiated readers, arts scholars, theatre buffs, potential researchers and students keen about the art and its future.

This book places Kathakali in its historical, social and caste context, delineating its 400-year-old journey with a rich and varied collection of photographs. What makes the book stand out are the anecdotes from conversations with the masters of the art and the common legends that are part of its social fabric. The accompanying lists, tables, appendices and historical lineage maps are interesting and valuable additions to the book.

Published by Niyogi Books
Pages: 296 / Photos: 391 / Price: Rs.3500
ISBN: 978-93-85285-01-1


July 26, 2016

NARTANAM: A Quarterly Journal of Indian Dance Vol.XVI No.2 April-June 2016 / ISSN 2455-7250

This issue of NARTANAM carries the details of the week long documentation of Kuchipudi Yakshaganam done in the Kuchipudi village (Feb 23-29, 2016) by Nartanam in collaboration with the Sangeet Natak Akademi and the Kuchipudi Natyaramam, government of Andhra Pradesh. It carries an extensive feature on the Music of Sattriya under the series 'Music for Dance'. A special feature is the white paper on the Sangeet Natak Akademi.

To read the editorial, article stubs and the review section one may click on the following link.


May 17, 2016

NRITYA-GATHA- Stories of Indian Dance
The 62-page hard-bound color book is a picture book on Indian dance forms for children, the book is informative, and at the same time narrative with attractive illustrations.
Written by Parwati Dutta
Published by Mahagami Arts Research Foundation
Price: Rs.500
Contact Mahagami: (0240) -6421054 (ext 33); 91-9372093189 /


Apr 9, 2016

Vol.XVI No.1 January - March-2016 / ISSN 2455-7250

"The latest issue of Nartanam with about 200 pages of Black and White and Colour pictures is a special issue with rare photographs from the archives of Avinash Pasricha. This issue ushers Nartanam into the 16th year of its publication.
Read the elaborate reviews of Leela Venkataraman on Chennai season, and Kadamb and other reviews. To read the editorial and the entire review section please visit


Mar 31, 2016

CMTAI & ARTSPHERE (Pune) have produced India's very first journal on Dance / Movement therapy - 'Healing through Movement.' Read case studies, articles and research studies authored by leading dance/movement therapists and allied professionals.
Visit for the journal edited by Aarohi Doshi, Anubha and Karishma Harlalka.


Feb 14, 2016

Aatmalaya has brought out a handbook, THE LIBERATING DANCE - NATYATANTRA, a useful guide on Philosophy and Symbolism in dance authored by Dr. Padmaja Suresh. A small donation price of Rs.120 has been fixed for this book which has succinctly given an overview of subjects like Rasa, Darshana, Yantra, Tantra and Natya.
Those interested in a copy of this book may please contact Aatmalaya office in Bangalore at (080) - 23343393 or email


Jan 29, 2016

DRISHTI MAGAZINE returns with a fresh, full-colour edition.
Some of the articles featured in this issue:
An exclusive interview with Dr. Padma Subrahmanyam
"Padam and its connotations" by scholar / musicologist Dr. Pappu Venugopala Rao
"Arts in times of Frenzy" by art historian Ashish Mohan Khokar
"Abhinaya in Ashtapadi" by Dr. Sonal Mansingh
"Karnataka Yakshagana and Kuchipudi"- a brief study by Dr. Veena Murthy Vijay
"Bangalore dance scene now and then" by Anuradha Vikranth
"The famed flautist - Shashank Subramanyam" by Meghana Venkat
"Folk forms of Karnataka" by Sneha Kappanna
Contact for subscription queries.


Jan 7, 2016

Nartanam - Vol XV No. 4 "Special Issue on Dr Padma Subrahmanyam" (October - December 2015)
Nartanam celebrates completion of 15 years with this special issue on Dr. Padma Subrahmanyam.


Dec 28, 2015

Prof C.V. Chandrasekhar received the first copy of Bala Devi Chandrashekar's Bharatanatyam DVD TRIPURA - DIVINE FEMININE - a Margam, released by Mallika Ravi, CEO Lancor Group, at Chennai on 26th December 2015.



Nov 8, 2015

The latest issue of NARTANAM Vol XV no. 3 brings a moment from the past, the 1954 Inter-University Youth Festival, which underlies all the values that one knows to be sterling but which one seldom encounters within ourselves and all around us—the spirit of discovery, wonderment, and competing within the ambit of inquiry, sharing and unity. Also check out the Delhi Diary by Leela Venkataraman and other reviews. The articles chronicle the events of the first ever youth seminar in post independent India and its landmark artistic fallout, and beautifully bring out the finer sensibilities of the times and the thrust behind the event.


Sep 14, 2015

A bumper issue of 275 pages consisting of rare interviews and articles of Dr. Kapila Vatsyayan.


Aug 29, 2015

DANCE DRAMA, IN THEORY AND PRACTICE by Dr. S Ramaratnam, currently Vice Chancellor of Jagadguru Kripalu University, Odisha, is a documentation of nearly a hundred years of growth and development of a precious art form that developed in the South, more particularly in Tamil Nadu. The book consists of 12 chapters: Introduction to dance, drama and dance drama; Foundations of dance drama; dance dramas of Kalakshetra, Dr.Sudharani Raghupathy, Dhananjayans, Vyjayantimala, Dr. Padma Subrahmanyam, ChitraVisweswaran; The contribution of senior and junior artistes to dance drama; The 21st century representations of classical, folk and other dance dramas.
Dr. Ramaratnam has been working in the field of Dramaturgy for the past 40 years and has also been connected to the dance field for over 25 years.
Published by Munshiram Manoharlal, 54, Rani Jhansi Road, New Delhi 110055
Price: Rs. 3000 (


May 6, 2015

'An Indian Analysis of Aesthetics: The Dance, the Dancer and the Spectator' by Madhavi Puranam is a scholarly book that among others highlights the Sharira Viveka concepts, Chatura Damodara's Sangeeta Darpanam (17th C) and modern theories of meditation, which any sensible Indian dancer/dance aficionado/dance scholar cannot afford to ignore reading...
Published by Abhinav Publications, E-37, Hauz Khas, Delhi 110016
232 Pages, Rs. 900 / ISBN: 81-7017-555-0


April 8, 2015

Nartanam XV No 1 is a special issue on FOLK DANCES OF ODISHA. This issue has 50 colour plates to showcase the vibrant folk colours. Kedar Mishra and Arabinda Mahapatra, team members of Nartanam from Odisha, have worked tirelessly to make the issue a reality and are the guest and photo editors, respectively, of this issue.


March 25, 2015

The book tells about the two avatars of the eminent Odissi dancer Ileana Citaristi. Growing up in the times of hippie culture, among the flower children of the seventies, Ileana's life is a fascinating story of a rebellious soul which migrates across continents from the small town of Bergamo in the mountainous ranges of north Italy to bustling Cuttack on the east coast of India. In this autobiography, Ileana recounts her journey going back in time to the sixties, in her first avatar, doing it all; from a rebellious teenager to acting in theatre, from researching in Western psychoanalysis of Carl Gustav Jung to Tibetan mandala, from hitch-hiking across a pre-Taliban Kabul to entering India and learning Kathakali in Kerala, from being high on LSD to turning vegetarian and finally metamorphosing from a bohemian foreigner to a disciplined Indianized shishya.

In the second avatar she takes a gigantic leap of faith, when she embraces an alien land and language as her own and surrenders everything at the feet of her Guru Kelucharan Mohapatra to learn the ancient art form of Odissi and give shape to the inner strivings of her soul.
Published by Manohar, New Delhi
Pages 280 / Price: Rs.950


Jan 27, 2015

Nartanam Vol XIV no. 4 is an issue featuring the rare documents of "Jayantika" and the oldest known Kutiyattam photos and tributes to Maya Rao and Sitara Devi along with other research articles and important reviews.


Dec 31, 2014

New Jersey based Bharatanatyam dancer released her fifth Bharatanatyam dance DVD VISHWAM - THE OMNIPRESENT on the 27th December 2014 at the TAG center in Alwarpet, Chennai. Bala Devi Chandrashekar is the Artistic Director of Shree Padma Nrityam Academy of Performing Arts, New Jersey. The first copy was released by L Sabaretnam Chairman, Kartik Fine Arts and Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan and received by N Gopalaswami, Chairman Kalakshetra Foundation. The DVD is available at: and


Oct 16, 2014

NARTANAM: Volume XIV No.3, July - Sept 2014
Special issue on dance criticism and photography
The issue features articles by Lakshmi Vishwanathan, Madhavi Puranam, Dr. Sunil Kothari, Reginald Massey, Veejay Sai, R Sreenivasan, Tulsi Badrinath, Shumita Mahajan, Janaki Patrik, Leela Samson, Elisabeth Zimmer, Leslie R Berman.
Plus reviews, news and notes.


July 22, 2014

The 16th edition of Ashish Mohan Khokar's Attendance 2014 titled TELUGU TRADITIONS is put together by guest editor Ananda Shankar Jayant. This edition is dedicated to the composite and combined classical dance traditions of the Telugu people. A host of articles, interviews, personal memoirs, books, research articles, and write-ups reconstruct the creative journey of the many extraordinary artistes and encompasses the warp and weft of Telugu classical dance traditions. The 220 page multi-colour book has been designed by Pratima Sagar.

Price: Rs.1000
For further details: /


July 14, 2014

Vol XIV No.2 is a special on the Jawaharlal Nehru Manipur Dance Academy. The issue also carries tributes to late gurus Kalakshetra Kunhiraman and guru Jagannath Mahanta and late scholar Suresh Balabanta Ray, apart from a feature on late Maharaj Ghulam Hussain Kathak of Pakistan. Chavittunatakam, Prahlad Natak and reviews of the major dance events are the other features.


June 30, 2014

This book is a valuable record of Indian classical dance and Kathak in particular. Her path breaking achievements suffused with personal reminiscences makes this memoir extremely readable and a significant chapter in the cultural history of India. For the first time, the Department of Kannada and Culture and the Karnataka Sahithya Academy have come out with a book on a dancer and her art.
Book the copy right now at
Info: /


June 21, 2014

VOYAGES OF BODY AND SOUL: SELECTED FEMALE ICONS OF INDIA AND BEYOND includes scholarly essays and performance/choreographic notes from a diverse range of contributors on the themes of "Mad and Divine: India's Female Saint-Poets" and "Epic Women of India and Beyond." The contributors explore the tendency of patriarchal societies to label exceptional saint-poets yearning for the divine as "mad" because of their resistance to normative and acceptable female behavior. Scholars and performers journey across history, with discussions ranging from the 8th century Tamil mystic poet Andal's divine poetry, to the 16th century saint-poet Meerabai, to figures across the Indian subcontinent, including Kashmir's Lalleshwari and Maharashtra's Janabai, who, as a low caste member, joined the sacred path partly to escape caste oppression. The definition of "epic women" in this volume is multi-faceted: from looking at commonly accepted epic figures, such as the iconic Sita from The Ramayana, to examining epic women in politics, to probing dark women with passions of epic proportions, to legendary teachers of the classical dance style of Bharatanatyam, to women with monumental courage and creativity across historical time-periods and geographical locations - Ancient Greece, Ancient India, 20th century Mexico, and Myanmar. Voyages of Body and Soul recognizes creative and courageous female saint-poets, and outspoken women in ancient epics and in contemporary times who follow their chosen paths with deep devotion. Their lives and works are models for the human community in the 21st century.

Editors: Ketu H. Katrak, Anita R. Ratnam
Published by Cambridge Scholars Publishing
Date of Publication: April 2014
Price: £44.99


June 17, 2014

An Attaprakram (Acting Manual) for depicting the story of Ramayana through mudras in Kutiyattam Theatre
By G. Venu (Preface by Dr. Shobita Punja)

The book, Ramayana Samkhsepam is a pioneering work of notating the gestures and the body movement patterns of Kutiyattam. It is an actor's manual for expressing the story of Ramayana through Mudra -s in Kutiyattam theatre. The notations have been developed by eminent
Kutiyattam exponent Gopal Venu, who is also the founder director of Natanakairali, which is a Research, Training and Performing Centre for Traditional Arts.

Ramayana Samksepam reveals the story of Ramayana through hand gestures. The gestures are shown according to the Attaprakaram (acting manual) written in Malayalam. As each word is spoken or perceived in thought, the mind imbibes and manifests its essence and the hand
gestures gain a unique liveliness. These hand gestures are basically formulated from the gesticulations of the body parts in daily life and routine rituals. That is why, over and above the systematized framework, Ramayana Samksepam continues to be an expression of storytelling that comes from the heart.

For nearly three decades, Gopal Venu was the disciple and inseparable companion of Guru Ammannur Madhava Chakyar, the patriarch of Kutiyattam, the performing art form that had inherited the essence of Indian acting.

A complete video documentation to accompany the publication is based on the teachings of Guru Ammannur Madhava Chakyar. Research and Introduction by G. Venu / Performed by Kapila Venu.

This documentation includes the abhinaya of the Navarasa by Guru Ammannur Madhava Chakyar (This is a rare and informal documentation of the maestro - recorded in 1986).

The total duration of the DVD - 3 hours 50 minutes Published with the support from National Culture Fund, Ministry of Culture, Government of India

pp.IX +324 / Colour plates: 83
Black and white photos: 106 / Line drawings: 460
Price: India (including the DVD of Ramayana Samksepam) Rs. 1000
For copies and further details write to:
Natanakairali, Ammannur Chakyar Madhom, Irinjalakuda 680 121, Trichur, Kerala
E-mail: /
Ph: (0480) - 2825559 / Mobile: 09846452933


Jun 16, 2014

FAINT PROMISE OF RAIN by Anjali Mitter Duva is to be released on October 7, 2014. This debut novel from Duva was inspired by a trip to her ancestral home of Rajasthan, India, and studying Kathak, the traditional dance of the region.

It is 1554 in the desert of Rajasthan, and a new Mughal emperor is expanding his territory. On a rare night of rain, a daughter Adhira is born to a family of Hindu temple dancers. Fearing a bleak future, her father—against his wife and sons' protests—puts his faith in tradition and in his last child for each to save the other. He insists Adhira "marry" the temple deity and give herself to a wealthy patron. But after one terrible evening, she makes a bold choice that carries her family's story and their dance to a startling new beginning. Told from the perspective of this dancer and filled with the sounds, sights and flavors of the Indian desert, Faint Promise of Rain is the story of a family and a girl caught between art, duty, and fear in a changing world.

Anjali Mitter Duva is a freelance writer and project manager, and the former Executive Director of Chhandika (the Chhandam Institute of Kathak Dance, Inc.) Still involved in the organization's administration, she also teaches Kathak dance to some of its youngest students. Her professional writing spans corporate, non-profit and academic communications; educational and research-based web content; and fundraising and development materials. Her fields of expertise include urban development, international affairs, history, geography, public health and arts and culture. She has been a writing tutor and instructor at MIT.

Published by: She Writes Press
Price: $16.95
ISBN: 978-1938314971
Paperback: 332 pages


Jun 6, 2014

Nartanam's latest issue (January-March, 2014) is a special on SPIC MACAY. Another special feature of this issue is an elaborate case study "American Triumvirate- Presenting Indian Arts in America" by eminent scholar Janaki Patrik. The editorial, the stubs of the articles and the entire review section can be read on its website.


Feb 15, 2014

LOUD APPLAUSE is a dance oriented bi monthly magazine published in Pune. It was launched by Kathak guru Maneesha Sathe. This is an initiative by Kathak Pathshala, dance school started by Neha Muthiyan. The first issue includes articles from internationally acclaimed artists like Shambhavi Dandekar who has written about Riyaz and Kalasamanvay by Roshan Date puts light on dance in sculpture. The upcoming issues will have articles from Guru Maneesha Sathe, Parimal Phadke and much more....
The annual subscription is Rs.550. Contact for subscription:
Neha Muthiyan: 9823206291


December 30, 2013

Bharatanatyam DVD titled UDDAVA GITA - Lord Krishna's last message, with dance performance and choreography by Bala Devi Chandrasekhar was released in Chennai. First copy released by L. Sabaretnam, Chairman Kartik Fine Arts, was received by Hon'ble Justice Chitra Venkataraman, Madras High Court.
Uddhava, the pure hearted and Vishnu's devotee feared from being separated from Lord Vishnu, but he was liberated from such fear. The ardent devotion makes a person achieve oneness which is the ultimate reality. The Gita sung by Uddhava thus became the example for crossing the three worlds.
The Lord narrates the legend of the ascetic Avadhuta and the story of the preceptors. The chosen five preceptors are - a spider, pigeon courtesan, maiden with a single bangle and a wasp.
DVD - Duration - 1hr and 40 min (

Compiled by Swami Shantanandapuri
Concept and Choreography - Bala Devi Chandrashekar
Script - Dr Pappu Venugopala Rao, Music - Rajkumar Bharathi
Rhythm - G Vijayaraghavan, Mridangam - G Vijayaraghavan
Vocal - G Srikanth, Keerthana; Nattuvangam - Balakrishnan
Violin - Embar Kannan, Veena - Bhavani Prasad, Tabla - Ganapathi
Music Production and Sound Technology - Sai Shravanam, Resound India

Price: Rs. 900 available at


October 20, 2013

POETRY OF DANCE, a DVD by Lakshmi Vishwanathan released on Oct 20 at Chennai.
A beautifully photographed short film on Bharatanatyam, the film captures the essential features of this dance set in picturesque locations in South India including temples, homes and the scenery of tropical splendor. The film is like a cultural travelogue. The film shows Bharatanatyam in all its variety with chosen numbers from the traditional repertoire. Scenes of basic training in a gurukul are followed by demos in gesture and movement. Lakshmi unfolds traditional numbers like Shiva tandava, a varnam, an ode to Krishna (Krishna nee begane), a playful javali (nee matale) and a vibrant thillana. She also demonstrates the navarasa. Poetry of Dance has something for both the lay person and the connoisseur. It is a visual delight while it explains the core elements of the dance.
Principal musician: Charumathi Ramachandran, cinematography: Ashok Kumar
Dancer & choreographer: Lakshmi Vishwanathan
Manufactured and marketed by: Swathi Soft Solutions, price: Rs.500


October 8, 2013

Nartanam Vol XIII, No. 3, July - September 2013
The latest issue of Nartanam is out. The issue commemorates some of the stalwarts of dance who have left this mortal world recently. On the cover is Mohanrao Kallianpurkar, the legendary Kathak maestro; Nartanam offers tributes to him in his birth centenary year. The issue commences a new series - Music for Dance - with some rare articles on Kuchipudi music from its archives. The issue also features a new section - Young Scholars - which provides a platform for young students of dance to publish their essays, articles and theses. The editorial, the stubs of the articles and the entire review section can be read on its website and even downloaded from


September 19, 2013

BIRJU MAHARAJ: THE MASTER THROUGH MY EYES by Saswati Sen, his foremost student, sketches the legendary Kathak maestro as an excellent dancer, vocalist, painter, musician, teacher, a player of several musical instruments and is above all, an unassuming, simple human being. The book is a dedication to her guru by Saswati Sen, who has known Birju Maharaj for over forty five years.
Publisher: Niyogi Books (June 19, 2013)
ISBN: 9789381523827
Pages: 217 / Illustrations: 126 color, 94 b & w (hardcover)
Rs. 995


September 11, 2013

Nartanam Vol-13-No.1 is a special issue on the legendary Guru Mani Madhava Chakyar. The issue contains articles by the best of scholars on the maestro and also rare translations from his book Natyakalpadrumam. The life and times and the works of the maestro have been dealt with academic diligence.

Nartanam Vol-13-No.2 is a special issue on Sattriya dealing with the origin in sattras, post independence development of the form and its transition to the proscenium stage and the concerns. The issue has articles by the stalwart dancers, academicians and scholars of Sattriya and also rare articles by Dr. Kapila Vatsyayan and Prof Maheswar Neog.

The details of the contents can be checked out on


September 5, 2013

This DVD is conceived and designed by Dr. P. Rama Devi, and covers the Natya Shastra topics in a comprehensive manner. The author has covered the 11 topics of Natya Veda, origin of Natya, Purva Ranga along with few supplementary topics which are essential for any dancer's knowledge. Videos of chari, sthanaka, nritta hastas are also included for the dancers to see, learn and practice. The presentation is designed by using contrast color combination with animation which runs with a click according to the reader's choice.
For details contact Dr. P. Rama Devi: +91 9849373553 /


August 30, 2013

Tamizh & Sanskrit compositions transliterated in English, Malayalam, Devanagari, Tamizh, along with meanings in English was released on Aug 18, 2013 by guru Adyar Lakshman and Bombay Jayashri. This compilation of Bombay Krishnamurthy's select works in a book form and an mp3 CD containing Pada Varnams, Tana Varnams, Thillana, Jathiswaram, Sabdam, Keerthanams and melodious bhajans is available in Chennai's SAPTASWARA Musicals Royapettah High Road, Chennai. Price: Rs.300

Bombay Krishnamurthy is a musician with multi-faceted skills as a music director, vocalist, flautist, percussionist, classical pianist and a Vaaggeyakara with having penned more than 100+ compositions of varied genre.
For info: / + 91 9323706560


August 20, 2013

MY BODY, MY WISDOM - a book on "Creative Dance Therapy" by Tripura Kashyap (choreographer, movement therapist and dance educator) is an easy-to-use guide to Creative Dance Therapy. Taking the reader through the history, philosophy and practical aspects of dance, or movement therapy, it attempts to de-mystify the discipline and make it accessible to the lay reader as well as the practitioner.
Can dance therapy be used for people of all ages and abilities?
How can it be used best with special needs people?
Can Indian dance forms be adapted for therapy?
How should a therapy session be structured?
What kind of music and props can be used?
This book answers all these questions and much more. With detailed descriptions of over a hundred movement activities and games accompanied by illustrations, this handbook is for all those who wish to break out of the restrictions imposed by society on our bodies.

Now available as an E-book on the internet which you can read and print!
If you wish to access it, mail:


August 19, 2013

SATHWIKAM, a DVD of Kathakali performances by living maestros was released on August 18 at Seetharam Kalamandir, Tripunithura.
Sathwikam was a unique Kathakali show. The pacha veshams were presented on one stage in a full-night program at Tripunithura a few months back by ten top artistes who presented short versions from ten major attakathas or plays where the pacha vesham was prominent. The artistes who portrayed the sathwika characters were Kalamandalam Gopi, Sadanam Krishnankutty, Kottakkal Chandrasekhara Warrier, Kalamandalam Krishnakumar, Kalamandalam Balasubramanian, Kalamandalam Vasu Pisharody, Kalamandalam Sreekumar, Kottakkal Kesavan, FACT Mohan and Kalamandalam Pradeep.
Kathakali musicians accompanying the artistes are Pathiyoor Sankarankutty, Kottakkal Madhu, Kalanilayam Rajeevan, Babu Namboodiri. An audio CD of the songs is also included along with a DVD on the Purappad.
For details, contact: + 91 9895730082 or + 91 904802 7872


August 14, 2013


The book gives a bird's-eye view of the Devadasi tradition, the life, history and culture of a very special persona of Indian art history. Lakshmi Vishwanathan brings to the subject a dancer's view point, with interesting insights into the last of the Devadasis she encountered in her research.

Published by Roli Books, New Delhi
Price: Rs. 295 / Pages: 216
ISBN-13: 978-8174366726
Available in Karnatic Music Book House, Chennai, book stores in other cities and on line.


August 6, 2013

Dr. Padmaja Suresh
The occult and clairvoyant practices have unequivocally attracted man from time immemorial. Having to maneuver out of the vortex of the mundane, man seeks a plausible panacea. This quest is not an outlandish palliative; it is in the familiar domain of the beatific. The timeless character of liturgy, scenically evoked through the medium of art form suggests the glorification of the divine and involuntarily kindles our conduits towards the primordial silence. Inventive and intuitive personae and prophetic auguries under the auspices of oracles become the cornerstone of certain traditions, ratified by providence.

There is no better formula than run the gamut as a practitioner. A Tantra Sāstra paradigm (Nātya can also be called as one such paradigm) exemplifies conception of the supreme personality of God, the dual aspect when the God himself becomes the Universe beyond Purusha and Prakriti - the complete, WHOLE, an undivided 'one'. With the force of dancing comes the discovery of THE 'I' and I re-unites with 'I'....Brahman.... I AM! What is that element, that essence or that principle that connects ONE to the dance, connects dance to LIFE, connects one with audiences, crossing all barriers? Is it the body owning a spirit, that is wanting to express something or is it the spirit that has manifested in this form in order to express? An artiste who is privy to the intricate and integral nuances of the art form, can recapture the true experience of the heart, after a recital. Nevertheless, it cannot exactly be an equal feeling, as very often the artiste would land on a writer's block, posed with an inexplicable experience. The endeavour in this book, has been to establish a co-relation between Nātya and Tantra.
Publisher: Sri Satguru Publications
Binding: Hard Cover
Price: Rs 800, Pages: 226
ISBN: 8170309417
For any further info, please contact orders / (011) - 23844930, 23847336
The book price can be discounted up to Rs.200 for artistes.
It could be bought from Padmaja Suresh, Bangalore (Ph: 09448068993) or the publishers (Gupta of Indian Books Center: 9953614555/3555).


July 25, 2013

Edited by KG Paulose
Kulashekara's performance text Vyangyavyakhya was an epoch making text in the history of Indian theatre. This innovation in performance practices marked a deviation in Bharata's national tradition and laid down the foundation for classical forms like Koodiyattam, Kathakali, Mohiniattam and Krishnattam. After remaining in manuscripts for all this time, Vyangyavyakhya is being published for the first time. This volume describes in detail Sanskrit theater until 10th century CE, performance texts of Dhananjayadhvani and Samvaranadhvani and developments in the post Kulasekhara era.
ISBN: 13:978-81-246-0699-5
Price: Rs.1250 / 42$
Contact DK Printworld:


April 28, 2013

RASAANUBHAVAM - A BHARATANATYAM DVD produced by Giri Trading presents specially choreographed pieces in a professional studio recording by Dr. Janaki Rangarajan whose immaculate and graceful movements and subtle yet communicative expressions have won the admiration of laymen and connoisseurs alike. The members of the talented orchestra accompanying the performance are Jayashree Ramanathan (nattuvangam), K Hariprasad (vocal), Vedakrishnaram (mridangam), and Kandadevi S Vijayaraghavan (violin).

The items featured in the DVD are (1) Alarippu, (2) Viruttam followed by Hari Narayana Kavuthuvam (composed by Marimuthu Pillai in Ragam Nattai), (3) Jathiswaram (composed by the Tanjore Quartet in Ragamalika), (4) Swarajathi in Ragam Huseni (composed by Melattur Venkatarama Shastri), (5) Ashtapadi in Ragam Sindhubhairavi (composed by Jayadeva), (6) Padam (composed by Periasamy Thooran in Ragam Behag), and (7) Thillana (composed by Poochi Srinivasa Iyengar in Ragam Paras).

For a video preview, visit or search by name
The DVD and related audio CD are now available for sale on and at Giri Trading.
For more information, visit


April 28, 2013

Smitalay's LEELAVATI

An Odissi dance ballet based on Bhaskaracharya's 12th century mathematical treatise, this famous text comprises of 261 shlokas. We chose 13 for our ballet and wove our story around Bhaskaracharya, the father and his daughter Leelavati. Our ballet opens with Bhaskaracharya invoking Lord Ganesh. We then imagine a day in the life of Leelavati, which begins at dawn, with a walk through the forest. Inspired by nature, and the sights they see, Bhaskaracharya crafts his problems which the talented Leelavati attempts to solve. The shlokas uses state problems in arithmetic, algebra and geometry; the use of fractions and square roots; quadratic equations; Pythagoras' Theorem and properties of triangles. The ballet ends with a shloka in praise of Leelavati (the daughter and the book).

Leelavati was premiered in 1999. Leelavati is conceived, choreographed and directed by Jhelum Paranjape. This ballet was performed by students of Smitalay and was recorded live on the 8th of March 2004, Nehru Centre, Mumbai.
Price: Rs.600

Available at:
Smitalay, Sane Guruji Arogya Mandir, 5/VI, Chunabhatti, Off S V Road, Santacruz (West), Mumbai 400054
Tel: (022) - 2661 6398 / 2661 5463 (we courier the dvds for an additional courier amount; on request).
Info: /


April 28, 2013

Volume 1 - ODISSI BASICS as taught by Guru Jhelum Paranjape

In this volume students will learn: Basic warm - up exercises / Torso and eye exercises / Hasta Bheda / Learning Chowk / Chowk stepping class / Learning Tribhangi / Tribhangi stepping class

Produced by Smitalay
Featuring: Dipali Tikam, Sanatan Chakravarty, Rupali Kadam and Rohan Dahale (mardala)
Price: Rs.400

Available at:
- Smitalay, Sane Guruji Arogya Mandir, 5/VI, Chunabhatti, Off S V Road, Santacruz (West), Mumbai 400054
Tel: (022) - 2661 6398 / 2661 5463 (we courier the dvds for an additional courier amount; on request).
- Giri Trading Agency P Ltd., Modi Niwas, Opp. PO Matunga, Mumbai 400019
Tel: (022) - 2414 1344/ 2412 2316/ 2414 3140/ 2415 8107 /
Info: /


April 11, 2013


VP Dhananjayan was one of the first men to make a successful career as a Bharatanatyam dancer. In the late sixties, when he made this choice, Bharatanatyam - the classical dance form that Rukmini Devi helped evolve from the dance of the devadasis - was almost exclusively the domain of women. Indeed, in making Bharatanatyam his profession, Dhananjayan had to create a space for his dance where none existed. It is only recently, in the relatively short span of the past seventy years, and to a great extent because of the creative efforts of versatile and innovative dancers like Dhananjayan, that greater number of men have performed Bharatanatyam as men; without needing to dress as women to appear on stage.

As Dhananjayan's student for nearly forty years now, and a trained dancer herself, the author Tulsi Badrinath, chronicles the story of his brilliant life in dance with the insight of one who understands each nuance of it. Weaving her own life-long passion for Bharatanatyam with his remarkable story, she brings to light the difficulties faced by a male dancer in establishing himself in what was thought to be a somewhat unrespectable profession, and tells the compelling story of his life, with empathy and understanding. Writing of his years in Kalakshetra and his ultimate disillusionment with it; of the love that blossomed between him and his wife Shanta, and the incredible dance partnership they forged, making them famous as The Dhananjayans; of his international collaborations with Pandit Ravi Shankar; and of his ability, as guru and teacher, to impart his passion for dance to his disciples, she explores her own understanding of what the dance, and her guru, have meant to her. Interspersing this remarkable tale of guru and shishya, with the stories of other male dancers in the realm of Bharatanatyam, she pays tribute to their extraordinary commitment, their talent and their courage.

Publisher: Hachette India, Price: Rs 599
ISBN 978-93-5009-584-3
Available at all retail and online bookstores from May 2013 onwards.


March 13, 2013

Bharata Nrityasala, the Bangalore-based Bharatanatyam school started by Late Sundari Santhanam, unveils NEO DESI KARANAS on March 16, 2013 at Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan (Bangalore), a research based book to serve as a guide for practicing dancers and research students. The book serves as a record of Sundari Santhanam's contribution to the field of dance. Sundari Santhanam, one of the senior disciples of Dr. Padma Subrahmanyam obtained a Central Government Fellowship to pursue research in 'Desi karanas' and embarked on a journey to discover and create a parallel set of movements to elucidate the Desi style of Natya. This research project took her to historical temples in Karnataka including Balligave, Gadag, Badami, Aihole and Pattadakal among others, wherein she studied the sculptures and carvings on the walls and gopurams. By the end of her research, Sundari was able to create and reconstruct 108 Desi Karanas with substantiating evidence of imagery obtained from temple architecture and sculptures in Karnataka spanning several centuries.

This painstaking effort culminated in 'Neo DesiKaranas' and this illustrated book describes all the types of Desi Karanas - a kind of framework for producing additional variety to our existing dance forms. The book provides proper definition for each Karana and is expected to provide a framework similar to Marga. It captures every detail about the 108 Desi Karanas - the origin, the literature survey, fieldwork and an illustration of the Karanas. Though Sundari Santhanam passed away in 2009, she has left behind a treasure trove of research papers on Desi Karanas and these have also been captured in this book in great detail. Sundari Santhanam had the opportunity to learn the Karanas and its application from the doyen herself.


January 24, 2013

The Nattuvanar's Art includes a musicological analysis of the jatis in varnams as a compositional form, explaining how they are traditionally structured and what the rules are for composing them. Many nattuvanars from various traditions were interviewed for this book and everyone's rules were included. Among the notation of examples are some of the jatis that Kandappa Pillai composed for Balasaraswati. The book begins with the history of the nattuvanar and the syllables, and a general introduction to tala. The appendix to The Nattuvanar's Art includes transliteration of compositions from the past from Natanadi Vadya Ranjanam, a Tamil text; Sabdam alias Tala Solkattu, a Tamil transliteration of Telugu texts; and Bharatarnavam, a Sanskrit text.

Emily Mayne has a BA in dance from Antioch University and an MA in dance from UCLA. In 1974 she began the study of Bharatanatyam with T. Balasaraswati. She underwent a thorough, traditional course of training under Balasaraswati both in the US and in India. She gave her debut concert in Chennai, India in 1980 and has since been performing and teaching extensively. The research for this book was partially funded by a Fulbright fellowship which allowed her to spend a year in India studying nattuvangam, interviewing musicians and dancers who were experts in this art, and working with a team of Sanskrit scholars to delve into the wealth of texts on music and dance from throughout the past two millenniums.
- Paperback: 78 pages
- Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform (January 16, 2013)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1481030329
- ISBN-13: 978-1481030328
- Product Dimensions: 8.5 x 8.5 x 0.2 inches

The book is available on Amazon. Below is the US link but it is also available on Amazon UK and Amazon Europe. Local booksellers in other countries, including online booksellers, can get a wholesale rate from Amazon


January 8, 2013

Karnataka Sangeet Nritya Academy has produced NRITYA MAYA, a collection of some items which were part of Bharatanatyam parampara of legendary guru, performer and scholar Prof. U. S. Krishna Rao. Released as part of his centenary celebration, this CD is initiated, compiled and directed by Vyjayanthi Kashi, Chairperson, Karnataka Sangeet Nritya Academy and is available at a discounted rate of Rs. 300. Six items have been recorded on high quality digital recording.
For more details and copies contact: 080-2221 5072
e-mail: /


December 26, 2012

Guru Kalanidhi Narayanan released a DVD entitled KALANIDHI BANI OF ABHINAYA: A TEACHING GUIDE FOR CHOREOGRAPHERS, TEACHERS AND STUDENTS OF ABHINAYA at her residence in Chennai on December 23, 2012. Produced by sisters Chamundeeswari and Annapoorna Kuppuswamy, students of Abhinaya Sudha, this is an entrepreneurial venture aimed at dance students and teachers in the UK and elsewhere. The DVD focuses on the four main aspects of the style. Using a university student-led production team, and harnessing the e-publishing phenomenon, seeks to explore the possibilities of low cost production to produce high quality and user friendly Bharatanatyam products.


December 3, 2012

SHALL WE KNOW: NATYA written by Dr. Lakshmi Ramaswamy is a compilation of 25 articles written in the journal Nadhabrahmam.

"These articles are in the nature of sharing my understanding and experience of Natya. The articles are of varied nature, but all connected with Natya. Some are introduction to not- very-well-known grammar texts. Some are explanation to certain concepts; some are answers to questions like, 'is nritta devoid of bhava?' For most of these articles, a comparison of Tamil and Sanskrit traditions and texts have been made."

Author: Dr Lakshmi Ramaswamy has earned a special place in Bharatanatyam as a talented performer, generous teacher, creative choreographer and ardent researcher. With a vibrant profile: 'A' grade artist of Doordarshan, empanelled artist of ICCR and South Zone Cultural Centre, recipient of the international Fulbright fellowship, several awards and titles, she has performed in prestigious festivals in India and many other countries. She has presented papers in seminars that include the international 'Classical Tamil Conference', Urbaniana University, Rome. She has also given lectures for refreshers course, lecture demonstrations and conducted workshops in India and abroad. Her doctoral thesis was on rare Tamil treatise, Koothanool.
Lakshmi is associated with Madras University, Alagappa University, Annamalai University in various capacities.
Book release on Dec 5, 2012 at Dakshinamurthy auditorium, Chennai

Price: Rs.250 (Release day offer: Rs.150)
The discount will continue for dance students on producing an identity.
Contact Lakshmi Ramaswamy: + 91 94442 00258 /


August 26, 2012

Edited by Anmol Vellani, India Foundation for the Arts

Beyond the Proscenium investigates how performing artists have conceived of space in performance, used existing theatre facilities imaginatively or created alternative spaces for performances.

Performing artists might experience the need to shake off the influence of the proscenium stage for a variety of reasons to connect with spectators in a more immediate way; to bring the features of the space they inhabit into the performance; to harness the energies of nature; to retrieve the sense of community and democratise the space for theatre; or to spurn the politics of which it is perceived to be a marker. The reason might also be sheer frustration with the insensitivity with which proscenium arch theatres are governed. This book documents these and other impulses that have taken performing artists 'beyond the proscenium' and the insights into the act of performance that they have acquired as a result.

This book was underwritten by a grant from the Navajbai Ratan Tata Trust.
176 pp., Rs 300, US$ 20


August 23, 2012

SELECTED POEMS: Subramania Bharati, translated by Usha Rajagopalan
Honoured at a public function when he was a mere boy of eleven with the title 'Bharati' (one blessed by Saraswati, the Goddess of Learning), C Subramania Bharati (1882-1921) is renowned as the herald of the renaissance of Tamil literature. The simplicity and lyricism that marked his poetry reflect a clear shift in sensibility and craft from the classical tradition, which had adhered to strictures of style, imagery and language for over 2000 years.

Ranging from the fiercely patriotic and the deeply romantic, to the humbling intensity of devotion and the sharp criticism of self and society, this selection brings together poems that reflect the very essence of Bharati's broad philosophy. Usha Rajagopalan's translations echo the lyricism and transformative power that have lent Bharati's poetry their distinctive, enduring quality.
- Special bilingual edition, with the original Tamil text printed alongside the English translation
- Contains all the features of the UK Everyman Classics editions, and is therefore useful as a study guide, for translators and scholars, as well as the general reader interested in poetry
- Lucid, detailed introduction to poet's life, philosophy and poetry
- Comprehensive selection of poems that charts the wide range of social and cultural themes and philosophy in Bharati's poetry

Usha Rajagopalan writes fiction and poetry in English and has won several awards, including three times consecutively in the Commonwealth Short Story competition, two All India Poetry prizes and 2nd place, Muse India Translation Prize for poetry. She was the 2011 Charles Wallace Fellow at the British Centre for Literary Translation, University of East Anglia. She has been in residence at Sangam House, Bangalore, Le Château de Lavigny, Switzerland, and at the University of British Columbia, Vancouver, BC. Her translation of Bharati's Panchali Sabadham is forthcoming from Hachette in December 2012.

ISBN 13: 978-93-5009-253-8
Category: Poetry/Translation, Binding: Paperback. Imprint: Everyman Classics
Format: B format, Page extent: 176 pp, Pub date: June 2012, Rights: World
Special Indian Price: Rs. 350,


April 24, 2012

The author describes a scientific basis for defining "whole-child education" and the role that dance training can play in achieving its objectives. A model of the Human Brain-Behaviour System is described, based on the view that the brain is an information processing system with an input from the sense organs and an output that represents behaviour. Between these two end points, seven processing Functions are described: Perception, Analysis and Evaluation, Intelligence, Decision making, The Emotional Brain, Imagination and Action or Expression. The description of these Functions includes two important elements of the system: Cognition and Empathy. The author suggests that any material included in the school curriculum must be checked against its potential for contributing to the development of these Functions, and based on this criterion, concludes that dance training merits serious consideration for such inclusion.

The book is being distributed free of cost, except for postage & handling, which for U.S. addresses is at present $5.
To acquire a copy please send a mailing address and a cheque for $5 (payable to Kala Bharati) to
3410 Sherbrooke St East, Montreal, H1W 1C6, Canada
Info: /


March 13, 2012

Kalakshetra Foundation launched the book 'A TREATISE ON MUDRAS - A LEXICON OF KATHAKALI AND NATYASHASTRA MUDRAS' on March 10, 2012, written by the late P G Gopalakrishna Iyer, during the 1940s as a part of the detailed thesis that he submitted to the University of Rangoon. The book was released by Kathakali scholar Dr. OM Anujan and the first copy was received by Lakshmi Lal, the daughter of the author, who was instrumental in getting it published through Kalakshetra Foundation.
The text was written after a thorough study of the key texts on dance, viz. the Natya Shastra, Hasthalakshanadeepika, and the Abhinaya Darpana, as well as careful viewings of Kathakali performances and comparisons between the texts and the prevalent practice. As a part of writing of the book, he also took hundreds of photographs for which the legendary Thakazhi Kunchu Kurup had posed. These, along with detailed footnotes, descriptions and a comparative analysis of the Hasthalakshanadeepika to the stage practice of the time provide a fascinating insight into the art form to scholars, performers and dance enthusiasts alike.
Iyer also documents the inconsistencies between the gestures and the text in the concise footnotes. He parallels the hand gestures of Abhinayadarpana and clearly mentions the hand gestures that were adapted into Kathakali. He has also added photos of the nine basic emotions by Guru Kunchu Kurup who was famous for Sathvika Abhinaya. Photos included in the compilation also depict the make-up and costumes of that time.


January 27, 2012

The Sruti Foundation has launched E-books for netizens interested in Carnatic music and classical dance. The e-books on great Carnatic musicians are 'Opus on Ariyakudi', 'Flute Mali Special', Palghat Mani Iyer and 'M.L. Vasanthakumari'. 'The Transfiguration of a Traditional Dance' traces the journey of Sadir to Bharatanatyam. The titles are based on the Sruti special issues which were sold-out years ago. The e-book on MLV is also available on Kindle.
Back issues of Sruti Magazine are also available as online downloads.
Access to these e-books and back issues will be made available to online members who register at
For more details contact:


January 6, 2012

The book 'Odissi Nrutya aur Bharatiya Sanskruti' by Odissi dancer Suprava Mishra in Hindi is her second book in Hindi on Odissi Dance.
In the first part of the book, the chapters like Bharatiya sangeet, dance and spirituality, temples of India and dance, religion and dance, Indian theatre, aesthetics and dance, the relation of different art form with dance, guru-sishya tradition in Indian culture, the emerging of modern dance from Indian classical dance, important folk dances of India.
Second part is about the dance tradition in Odisha in Jain Yuga and Baudha Yuga , The evolution to present day Odissi from Kharavela Yuga, the evolution of modern dance from ballet dance, Natraj in Odisha sculpture, Bandha Nrutya, description of different traditional songs of Odisha, life of Kabichandra Kalicharan- the father of Odissi dance, different folk dances of Odisha, a brief review of 'Kishor Chandrananda Champu' of Kabisurya Baladev Ratha, review of Kalidas's 'Abhigyan Sakuntalam.'
Third part is about the practical aspect of Odissi dance. Chapters are Ashtasmbhu, Nabarasa, Dasabatara, Geeta Gobinda, Karanas, Angahar, Beli, Mahari, different parts of Odissi dance like Mangalacharan, Batu, Pallavi, Abhinaya and Mokshya are included with their notation. In mangalacharan, Ganesh Stuti, Ganesh Tandav, Narayana Stuti, Shivastaka, ShivaTandava, Panchatatwa Stuti, Harihara Sabda, Mahakali Stuti etc are included. Notation of different Pallavi like Kalavati, Kalyan, Vasant, Mohana, Saveri, Hamsadhwani are included. Abhinaya in Debanagari script with meaning in Hindi is included.
Colour photos of Mukteshwar temple, Konark temple and photos of different rasas are included.
Published in 2012, pages 176, colour illustrations - 34, B/W Illustrations - 28, Hard bound size - 22x30 cms. Price: Rs. 1500
Contact: Suprava Mishra, 6 Raj Residency, Opp Shilaj Lake, Shilaj, Ahmedabad 380058
Ph: 91 2717 293353, Mobile: 9427214800, e-mail:


Dec 13, 2011

UNFINISHED GESTURES: Devadasis, Memory, and Modernity in South India, by Davesh Soneji
Unfinished Gestures presents the social and cultural history of courtesans in South India who are generally called devadasis, focusing on their encounters with colonial modernity in the 19th and early 20th centuries. Following a hundred years of vociferous social reform, including a 1947 law that criminalized their lifestyles, the women in devadasi communities contend with severe social stigma and economic and cultural disenfranchisement. Adroitly combining ethnographic fieldwork with historical research, Davesh Soneji provides a comprehensive portrait of these marginalized women and unsettles received ideas about relations among them, the aesthetic roots of their performances, and the political efficacy of social reform in their communities.
Ranging over courtly and private salon performances of music and dance by devadasis in the nineteenth century, the political mobilization of devadasi identity in the twentieth century, and the post-reform lives of women in these communities today, Unfinished Gestures charts the historical fissures that lie beneath cultural modernity in South India.
Cloth $72.00, ISBN: 9780226768090
Paper $24.00 ISBN: 9780226768106
Published by University of Chicago Press, 312 pages
Davesh Soneji is associate professor of South Asian religions at McGill University, Montréal, Canada. He is coeditor of Performing Pasts: Reinventing the Arts in Modern South India and editor of Bharatanatyam: A Reader.


October 23, 2011

THE DANCE ORISSI by Mohan Khokar and Ashish Khokar
The classical dance form from Orissa is Orissi. Bit like the word, it is simple, refreshing and poetic. Lyrical, sensuous and fluid too. The history and heritage of Orissi is vast, covering two centuries of rulers and practitioners who added and enhanced the body-work of the form found first in inscriptions and temple carvings, including in tantric yogini cult.
This the first ever in-depth, authoritative and scholarly account on the intricate and extensive heritage and history of the form and of the rulers and kings who embellished it and the pioneering gurus and dancers who polished it to shine like a perfectly chiseled gem it is today. The story of Orissi is the story of the performing arts of Orissa for it is one form in which music, dance and drama coalesce. Its connections with the temples and the courts, the dancers and the gurus have been traced in this historical document. The four pillars of the form, Gurus Pankaj Charan Das, Kelucharan Mohapatra, Deba Prasad Das and Mayadhar Raut, have been profiled at length because to them we owe the revival and survival of Orissi as we see it today. Principal exponents and stars and some prominent students too feature in this book.
This book with over 700 illustrations spread over 400 pages, took ten years to complete and is the most definitive account of the form. This is the last book the pioneering scholar, dance-historian and collector Late Prof. Mohan Khokar wrote and left unfinished. His son and successor, Ashish Khokar has helped complete it.
2011, Pp. 339 Col. / Illus. 163 B/W Illus. 258 / Size: 30x22 cms
ISBN 81-7017-438-4 / Price: Rs. 3360
Published by: Abhinav Publications, New Delhi
Ph: (91-11) - 26566387, 26524658, 44128717


Sept 14, 2011

DRISHTI 15 - The highlight of this issue is the updated Drishti Art Resources, periodical directory of dancers, musicians, art-related technicians, institutes of music and dance, and other art-related establishments. The data in the directory has been compiled with care but corrections and additions, if any, are welcome. For increasing its usefulness, there are plans to make it available online soon.
In the past few months, Creative Director, Anuradha Vikranth met legends in the field of dance - Guru Kumudini Lakhia, Yamini Krishnamurthy, and Dr Padma Subrahmanyam and presents glimpses of her inspiring interactions with them.
Tributes to Shrish Mohan and Dr Nataraja Ramakrishna, some of the great personalities who passed away in the past few months - the world of dance will sorely miss them.
Artists from Karnataka have received many awards, in recent months.
India's best known dance historian Ashish Khokar, in his inimitable style, continues his column 'Dance of Yesteryears'. In 'Folk Forms of Karnataka', Sneha Nandagopal features 'Chit Mela'; in 'Dancing: How it all began', Leela Ramanathan talks in brief about all the recognized classical dances of India. Other regular features and interesting articles await your perusal.
From this issue, a new series, Drishti Drishya Gnyana is a contest for you, where each issue will feature rare photographs of one of our legendary artists. Guess the name of the artist and win a prize.
Price: Rs.50
Info: /


Sept 3, 2011

Roshen Alkazi's Books on Ancient & Medieval Indian Costume, two authoritative books on the history of Indian costumes. Roshan Alkazi (1926- 2007) has made a detailed study of Indian costumes of the earliest times up to the Gupta period and this book surveys the evolution of costume from 321BC to 815AD of India's great civilizations - Costumes, headgear & hairstyles, jewellery, textiles and dyes.
Ancient Indian Costume: 222 pages, ISBN: 978-1-890206-83-3, Price: Rs.3000
Medieval Indian Costume: 332 pages, ISBN: 978-1-890206-45-1, Price: Rs.4500
Two volume set: RS.7000, Published by Art Heritage, New Delhi
To order: Theater & Television Associates, E 30 Greater Kailash 2, New Delhi 110048
Ph: +91 98101 66643, e-mail:


August 8, 2011

A culture book on the innovations in Indian arts and culture across 60 years of Independent India titled PATHFINDERS is published by Ace Publications & Promotions. 'Pathfinders: A journey through art and culture over the last sixty years of the Indian Republic' is a 463 page hardbound treasure replete with beautiful and rare archival images, essays on each segment, and write-ups on the profiled artistes focusing on their unique contribution to the field, and interviews with select artistes. There are six segments in all - music, visual arts, dance, literature, theatre and cinema - on personalities who have left a lasting legacy, and two interviews in each section apart from articles.
'Pathfinders' is the brainchild of Sashi Vyas, son of renowned musician CR Vyas, who was struck by the lack of archival documentation of the contribution of our cultural icons in the renaissance of Indian culture post independence.
Some of the greats profiled in the music section include Aruyakudi Ramanuja Iyengar, Semmangudi Srinivasa Iyer, Ustad Bade Ghulam Ali Kahna, Kishori Amonkar, DK Pattammal, TR Mahalingam, Amjad Ali Khan, Shivkumar Sharma, MS Subbulakshmi, CR Vyas, Ali Akbar Khan, Bhimsen Joshi, Zakir Hussain. The visual arts section features articles on MF Hussain, Bhupen Khakkar, Nalini Malani, VS Gaitonde, KG Subramanyan, Akbar Padamsee and so on. The dance section has interviews of Birju Maharaj and Padma Subrahmanyam and articles on Yamini Krishnamurthy, Vempati Chinna Sathyam, T Balasaraswati, Painkulam Rama Chakyar, Uday Shankar, Sonal Mansingh, Astad Deboo, Guru Bipin Singh, Kelucharan Mohapatra, Chandralekha, Kumudhini Lakhia, Kalamandalam Gopi etc.
The literature section features profiles of Jayakanthan, Sujata (Rangarajan), OV VIjayan, Agyeya, Dr.Shivrama Karanth, Saadat Hasan Manto, Vaikkom Mohammed Basheer, Mahasweta Devi, Ismat Chugtai, BS Mardhekar and so on. Some of the artistes profiled in the theatre section are Badal Sircar, BV Karanth, Ratan Thiyam, Satyadev Dubey, Kavalam Narayana Panikkar, Naseeruddin Shah, Vijay Tendulkar, Utpal Dutt, Habib Tanvir and the interviews are of Vijaya Mehta and Girish Karnad. The cinema section features interviews of Shyam Benegal and Aparna Sen and some of the featured artistes include Guru Dutt, Mani Ratnam, Satyajit Ray, Mrinal Sen, K Balachander, V Shantaram, Adoor Gopalakrishnan, Girish Kasaravalli.
Published by Ace Publications & Promotions Pvt Ltd, Mumbai
Number of pages: 463, Size: 13" x 11"
ISBN: 978-81-920196-0-4 / Price: RS.6000 or USD 150


August 3, 2011


Contemporary Indian Dance delineates a new language of dance - multi-layered and multivocal
- in India and the diaspora. This language unfolds at the intersection of classical Indian
dance forms with yoga, pan-Asian dance and martial arts traditions as well as modern and postmodern dance, and theatrical tools that result in hybrid dance creations. Cutting edge
themes - ethnicity, gender and sexuality - are inspired by artists' geographical locations
in the global North or South.
This study is grounded historically (the revival of Indian dance in early 20th century), and
examines today's phenomena of globalization and diaspora that impact artists in India and worldwide. It includes creative choreography (with over 30 images) from selected artists and pioneers that has impact and reverberates in 'an ancestry of gesture' in the work of emerging choreographers. An interdisciplinary and comparative approach makes visible inter-connections among artists in sites as distant and disparate as Toronto to Chennai, and London to Los Angeles.
List of Illustrations | Series Preface | Acknowledgements | Preface: Multiple Idioms of Contemporary Indian Dance | Glossary | Introduction:
Theoretical Frames: Ways of Looking at Contemporary Indian Dance | Contested Histories of 'Revivals' of Classical Indian Dance and Early Pioneers of Contemporary Indian Dance | Abstract Dance with Rasa: Pioneers Astad Deboo and Shobana Jeyasingh | Beyond Tradition: Contemporary Choreography by Masters of Traditional Indian Dance and Emerging Artists Innovating in Contemporary Choreography | Hybrid Artists and Transnational Collaborations: Chennai, Toronto, Kuala Lumpur | Dancing in the Diaspora Part I: North America | Dancing in the Diaspora Part II: Britain | Conclusion: Ways of Looking Ahead | Endnotes | Bibliography | Index
KETU H KATRAK, born in Bombay, India, is Professor in the Department of Drama at the University of California, Irvine.
Published by Palgrave (UK)
Promo Code: P356ED / ISBN: 0-230-27855-8
Price: $85.00
View flyer


July 1, 2011

The latest issue of Indian Folklife - the 38th issue, is out! Guest edited by Heike Moser, this issue is on the traditional Sanskrit theater of Kerala - Kutiyattam. It is titled KUTIYATTAM: 10 YEARS AFTER THE UNESCO DECLARATION. With over fifteen contributions, the journal is unique as it reflects the opinions and ideas of both scholars and artistes of Kutiyattam.


June 19, 2011

Books by Guru S Balachandra Raju, Music & Dance Teacher, Director, Kanchi Kamakoti Peeta Asthana vidwan.
1. Natana mudiraigal (Tamil) - Rs 40
2. Natyamum Yogak Kalaiyum (Tamil) - Rs 40
3. Natya Nattuvanga Saram - a detailed study about art of nattuvangam (Tamil) - Rs. 100
4. Isai Natya Palligal Amaippadu Eppadi? - Vasthu lakshanas for Music and Dance school (Tamil) - Rs 45
5. Natana Manjari - 100 compositions for Bharathanatyam Rs.200 (CD First part)
6. Chithambara Pancha Rathnam (5 songs on Lord Chithambaram which is equal to Varnam sung by Dr. Sirgazi Sivachithambaram) - Rs 100 with CD
7. Natana Adavugal - Tamil revised and enlarged edition - Rs 210
8. Chithira Nardhanam & Alankara Natanangal - Rs 35
9. Natana Adavugal in English - Rs 500. Translation by B Shivaranjani

The books are released by Shivaranjani Publications, 12A Sakthi Nagar 2nd St, Choolaimedu, Chennai 600094.
Ph: (044) - 23741154 or + 91 9884455286,


June 15, 2011

Sruti, May 2011. This issue features a profile on guru 'Adyar K Lakshman - A true sangeetagna' by S Janaki and second part of the feature on Natyacharya V.S. Muthuswami Pillai by Sujatha Vijayaraghavan and recollections by his disciples. Read 'Dancer's Diary' by Roja Kannan and Mythili Prakash. Plus there are reports, interviews and articles on things musical.
Price: Rs. 45
Contact address: The Sruti Foundation, 9 Cathedral Road, Chennai 600 086
Ph: (91 - 44) - 28128070 & 28128073. Email: and


June 15, 2011

KN DANDAYUDAPANI PILLAI: LIFE AND CONTRIBUTION is a book on the legendary Bharatanatyam teacher. It was released on June 5, 2011 at Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan, Chennai.


May 21, 2011

Culture Vistas releases a Mohiniattam DVD of 40 minutes duration with performance by Sunanda Nair featuring Ananda Ganapathi, Mukhachalam, Chaliye Kunjana Mo, Nrithyathi Nrithyathi.

Price: Rs.395
Contact: Culture Vistas Marketing Services Pvt Ltd, Kaudiyar, Thiruvananthapuram 695003
Ph: +91 471 2311025 ; e-mail:
Info: /


May 4, 2011

Collected writings of Nandini Ramani, well known Bharatanatyam exponent, who has inherited the legacy of her Sanskrit scholar father Dr. V Raghavan and the legendary T Balasaraswati. Nandini has been associated with The Hindu for 15 years as its resident dance correspondent. She is respected for her unbiased, analytical and constructive approach to dance criticism.
Published by Dr. V Raghavan Centre for Performing Arts, Chennai
Price: Rs.350
Contact Nandini Ramani at: (044) - 24430344 /


May 4, 2011

It was released on the occasion of Odissi International 2010 in December, at Bhubaneswar. It features tributes to Guru Surendranath Jena, Dhirendra Nath Patnaik, Dullav Chandra Singh and Asako Takami, articles on personality Laxmipriya Mohaptra, on institution Orissa Dance Academy, Odissi tailors, profiles of ten young talents, Odissi in Russia and an interview with Pakistani dancer Sheema Kermani.
Published by Shyamhari Chakra on behalf of Samskritiki
Price: Rs.150
Contact:, +91 94371 08815


April 2, 2011

Swathi Soft Solutions presents audio Cd SANGEETA LAHIRI (Geetham, Vaadyam and Nrityam) in its Sanskriti series. Guru VP Dhananjayan has penned the songs and composed music too. Famed Carnatic and playback singer P Unnikrishnan has rendered the songs evocatively. Nandini Ramani - scholar and critic -comments that the songs are suitable for concert singing as well as for natya choreography. Sriramkumar (violin), KV Prasad (mridangam), Karthik (ghatam) give accompaniment.

The repertoire is drawn from Dhananjayan's Bharatanatyam compositions. This compilation embodies his complete Bharatanatyam repertoire in Malayalam (both lyrics and music). For consummate understanding and enjoyment of the music, the lyrics in Malayalam and its transliteration in English is given in the enclosed printed booklet.
Produced and marketed by Swathi Soft Solutions. Price: Rs.150
e-mail: / (044) - 42316060


March 15, 2011

A research oriented book (Kannada language) written by Manorama BN about the Bharatanatyam repertoire. Book consists of the historical aspects and repertoire and its significance along with analysis of Natya Marga and paramapara, Difference of Bharatha and later theories, Lokadharmi v/s Natyadharmi, Tanjore Quartet, Sefoji's Nirupana Tradition, Temple and Rajashraya repertoire, Karnataka and Tamilnadu Bharatanatyam Tradition and Contemporary movements. Mudraranava is the 1st research oriented book written by Manorama about interdisciplinary aspects of Hastha mudra.
Pages:160, Price: Rs.125


Jan 28, 2011

eParampara Infotainment , the pioneers in Bharatanatyam products have released four DVDs of Priyadarsini Govind and two DVDs of Lavanya Ananth under their 'Kalakriya Series'.

Bharatanatyam dancer Priyadarsini Govind presents a hearty fare through four DVDs- two on Abhinaya and two on Thillana- released during the December Season. The mesmerizing charm of Thillana has been captured in detail in Ruchira Thillana and Mohana Thillana'. Besides the sparkling solo performances by Priyadarsini Govind and Anajana Anand, there is a captivating Thillana duet performed by Apoorva Jayaraman & Shwetha.

A wealth of information on thillana by way of Priyadarsini's lucid introduction encompassing the structure, the concomitant adavu patterns, adavu korvais, pancha nadais, attamis and commonly used ragas is a delectable value addition that students will lap up with relish.

Bhava Pravaaham contains some select items hand-picked and introduced by Priyadarsini Govind. Here there is a fine sprinkling of compositions in different languages, by ace composers across India depicting different moods, characters and situations. Each item unfolds as a solo performance by Priyadarsini Govind or Apoorva Jayaraman or Shwetha Prachande, her promising disciples.

Similarly Rasanubhava presents a unique abhinaya experience through legendary compositions in Tamil, Telugu and Kannada. Selected and choreographed by Priyadarsini, each item is introduced by the danseuse herself detailing its genre, composer, meaning of the lyrics and the mood portrayed. While the composition in the kavadi chindhu format is presented as a duet by Apoorva and Shweta, the other items unfold as captivating solos.

The first DVD of Lavanya Ananth titled 'Aavaahanam-summoning the celestials' unveils the features and finer aspects of Nrittanjali, a unique invocatory piece in the pure dance genre which involves an arresting array of body movements and footwork. There are some pulsating Nrittanjalis followed by Sthutis by ancient Indian saints on Ardha Nariswara (the half woman manifestation of Shiva), Harihara (the form of Shiva who is half Vishnu) and Amba (the Universal Mother) adapted for music and dance. The performance is preceded by a coherent introduction of the item and word-by-word description of the lyrics, context and the mood portrayed in it.

'Samhita- A miscellany & the mastery' is essentially a well-packaged Margam comprising Mallari, Varnam, Javali, Ashtapadi and Swaralaya that straddle compositions in different languages on different deities and depicting different emotions.

These products are available in the leading retail outlets and can also be ordered online through


January 21, 2011

MY JOURNEY IN DANCE' by GURU PRATAP PAWAR, as told to Ashish Mohan Khokar, was released in New Delhi on January 13, 2011.
The book is reconstructing history of Kathak in independent India through the personage of the first ganda-bandh (official) shishya of Guru Pratap Pawar. He was sent by ICCR In 1972 to faraway lands like Guyana and Trinidad to teach Kathak and after that he settled in the UK to do so. lots of new and interesting dance tales and myths are shared and some shattered! The book is visually a very rich treat with rare pictures from India's largest dance archives The Mohan Khokar Dance Collection. Many non-dance iconic names like Asha Bhonsale, H.H. Gaj Singh of Jodhpur and Amjad Ali Khan have contributed their reminiscences. The President of India has sent a message and Dr Karan Singh, the Foreword.
A4 size, 142 pages, 130 pics
Published by Ekah-Bios/Clarions
Price: Rs 1500/-, £25, $50 E40
ISBN: 978-81-216-1577-8


January 6, 2011

ODISSI YATRA: THE JOURNEY OF GURU MAYADHAR RAUT by Aadya Kaktikar, edited by Madhumita Raut
The history of Odissi dance over the last 60 years is the story of the life and work of Guru Mayadhar Raut. Known as one of the four pillars of Odissi, his style of Odissi (Mayadhar Raut paddhati) is Bhava Pradhan. The book captures the dynamic years of the 30s, 40s to the 70s in the world of Odissi. It describes, in detail, the struggle and the hardships undergone in redefining and codifying Odissi as one of the prominent dance forms of India. It elaborates the initial years of all the gurus and scholars together at Jayantika and the making of Kala Vikas Kendra. Illustrated with rare photographs, it also gives a detailed and delightful glimpse into the world of Kalakshetra.
Published by BR Rhythms, Delhi
ISBN: 978-81-88827-21-3
Price: Rs.1995


October 30, 2010

SHANMUKHA, the professional quarterly magazine devoted to Indian classical music and dance, is brought out by Sri Shanmukhananda Fine Arts & Sangeetha Sabha, Mumbai.

Its Special Issue (October-December 2010) is in commemoration of the birth bicentennial and centenary of Vadivelu (of the Thanjavur Quartet) and Vazhuvoor Ramiah Pillai, respectively.

Theme: "Banis of Bharatanatyam and Recent Trends"
Cover - Portrait of Lord Nataraja
Dedicatory page (Dedicated to the Thanjavur Quartet and Vazhuvoor Ramiah Pillai)
Nataraja Darshan - a portfolio of photos of Nataraja from sculptures and paintings (taken by Lalitha Venkat)
1. In Focus (Editor's Introduction) Radha Namboodiri
2. Vadivelu and Vazhuvoorar Centenaries A. Seshan
3. Pandanallur Alarmel Valli
4. Kattumannarkoil Ashish Khokar & M K Saroja
5. Vazhuvoor Kamala Lakshminarayanan
6. Thanjavur
Kuppiah Pillai K Kalyanasundaram and other gurus
based on interviews by Jyothi Mohan
Kittappa Pillai Sucheta Bhide Chapekar
Dandayudhapani Pillai Urmila Sathyanarayanan
Balasaraswati Nandini Ramani
7. Kalakshetra Leela Samson
8. Mysore Lalitha Srinivasan
9 Bharatanrityam Jayashree Rajagopalan
10. Teaching Bharatanatyam in the class room Jyothi Mohan
11. Teaching Bharatanatyam in foreign countries Rajyashree Ramesh
12 Group Choreography B Bhanumati
13. Dance Drama V.P. Dhananjayan
14. Contemporary and Thematic Dancing Anita Ratnam
15. Composing and Singing for Bharatanatyam Rajee Narayan
16. On Reviewing Bharatanatyam Performances Subadra Murthy
17. Book Review - Attendance - The Dance Annual of India 2009-10
18. Round-Up of Cultural Activities in Mumbai
The individual copy is priced at Rs.50 (India) / 25USD (abroad)
However subscribers will get the issue at the usual price of Rs.20 / 11.25USD
Annual subscription is Rs.80 (India) or 45USD (abroad-Rs.2025)

For the subscription form and other details, write to:
Ph: (91-22) - 24013207 (5pm to 7pm on weekdays)


Sep 19, 2010

A book release function was organised on 22nd August 2010 at Tattvaloka Hall, Chennai, by the Dr. V. Raghavan Centre for Performing Arts. The occasion was the 102nd birth anniversary function of Dr. V Raghavan. Two books published by the Centre were released during the function. One was 'Readings from the Bhagavad Gita by Dr. V. Raghavan. The second book should be of interest to dance students, researchers and teachers.

The name of the book is "Journey through a Tradition: Kandappa - T Balasaraswati Bharatanatyam Technique." The original book in Tamil was written by Dr. V. Raghavan more than 50 years ago. This is an English translation by his daughter Nandini Ramani who is one of the senior disciples of the late Bala. She has added two new chapters titled (1) Dr. V Raghavan's Contribution to a unique Natya sampradaya, and (2) The Bala Legacy. The Foreword for the book is by Prof. C.V. Chandrasekhar, The book is priced at only Rs. 170.

The book was released by Prof. Sudharani Raghupathy; the first copy was received by S. Janaki, Executive Editor of Sruti magazine, in the presence of Jayant Kastuar, Secretary, Sangeet Natak Akademi.

For more details, contact Nandini Ramani: (91-44) - 24430344.


Aug 21, 2010

Release of KATHAKALIPPADANGAL Part II - a text on Kathakali by Achuthan Kutty.
The second volume of Kathakalippadangal, containing Kottayam Kathakal (Bakavadham, Kirmeeravadham, Kalyanasaugandhikam & Kalakeyavadham) & Nalacharitham (4 dayas) was released on the 12th of August at Dr KN Pisharoty Smaraka Kathakali Club Irinjalakkuda.
Published by: Thiranottam, Dubai
Special publication offer to Kathakali connoisseurs of Narthaki community Rs 150 (Priced Rs 200)
Pls contact Aniyan Irinjalakkuda 09249800700 or 99475 98344, (0466)-2285 901,
Note: The text contains all popular parts of the story with stage notations and meaning of Slokams and Padams.
Achuthan Kutty, Thantra Academy, [Po] Vellinezhi, Dt. Palakkad, Kerala 679 504.


July 20, 2010

Bharatanatyam artiste Shashikala Ravi of Pune has released a DVD titled THE DANCE OF SHIVA. The DVD is produced and released by Swathi Solutions as a part of their Sanskriti Series. THE DANCE OF SHIVA is an exploration of some of the cosmic dances of Lord Shiva, more situational in its aspect - when, where and why it took place. It is a solo dance ballet choreographed by Shashikala Ravi in Ragamalika and Talamalika. All the lyrics and images used are from the book Shiva Thandavangal written by the Gnanacheri Swami Sri Sadashiva Bramendrar of Chennai.
Shashikala Ravi made an official release of the DVD on 11th July in Pune at her Amritanjali Dance Studio. She is the founder director of Amritanjali School of Bharatanatyam in Pune. She is a student of late Guru Swarna Saraswathy of Bharatanatya Academy, Delhi and Kalanidhi Narayan, Chennai. She has been trained in Carnatic vocal music by her mother, Thanga Varadarajan.
Price: Rs.350.
You can buy the DVD on the net from or from the regular outlets of Swati Solutions in all major cities.

Ojasi Sukhatankar's ABHINAYA THEMES IN INDIAN CLASSICAL KATHAK DANCE: A contextual reading in relation to pre-modern and modern Indian society (ISBN 978-3639236354), is published by Verlag Dr. Muller Publishing House Ltd.
This book deals with a contextual analysis of Kathak dance in relation to the differences between pre-modern Indian society with its modern times. With theoretical perspectives about thematic trends in dance, the traditional repertoire of Kathak performance in a socio-religious context is analyzed to study its growth and development. The discussion in various chapters tries to show how perception of art is affected by its divergence of context in various times in which it is presented. It also analyses how different social institutions, culture, tradition and religious systems of a society can be understood by studying the dance-form practised during those times in society. A practice-based choreographic project facilitates readers of different cultural background other than the Indian audience to understand both universality and limitation of Kathak styles. In spite of its focus on Kathak dance the scholarly treatment of theory and practice serves both the student and practitioner of any dance-form to take inspiration for socio-cultural research in any context of time.


June 20, 2010

MAYURA PRIYA NADHAM - dance creations by mridhangam artist Mayavaram T Viswanathan and music composed by Padma Seshadri sisters Randini and Roshini.
Manufactured and distributed by Viswam Fine Arts, Chennai
Info: 94444 43778 /


May 23, 2010

BALASARASWATI: HER ART AND LIFE is the first biography of T Balasaraswati (1918-1984). Balasaraswati was a dancer and musician from southern India who was hailed as India's greatest dancer and acclaimed as "one of the greatest performing artists of the 20th century" by the New York Times. She was a passionate revolutionary, an entirely modern artist, and her art and life defined the heart of traditional Bharatanatyam. Although steeped in the traditions of her culture and revered as the purest of hereditary performers, Balasaraswati's impact on contemporary dance in India and the United States has been acknowledged by some of the most recognized personalities in dance, including Martha Graham, Merce Cunningham, and Paul Taylor.

Balasaraswati: Her Art and Life
by Douglas M Knight Jr.
364 pp., 51 b/w illus., 16 duotones, 2 maps, 7 x 10"
Price: $35.00 jacketed cloth
ISBN: 978-0-8195-6906-6
Publication date: June 2010
Published by: Wesleyan University Press, 215 Long Lane, Middletown, CT 06459

'Balasaraswati: Her Art and Life' draws extensively on the dancer's personal accounts and discussion of the process of making dance and music, as well as commentary from family members - some themselves internationally respected artists - and dozens of her contemporaries from throughout her five-decade long career. The book is illustrated with rare historical photographs and portraits of the artist dancing.

Biographer Douglas Knight gives an account of the life and art of traditional performers from the hereditary devadasi community that provides fresh insight into the causes and costs of the displacement of family-based arts and artistic practices in India. This intimate portrait of a globally influential artist will appeal to lovers of dance and music as well as to those interested in Indian arts and culture, and the history of the United States during the turbulent 1960s. The book, named "an outstanding book in any field by a Connecticut author," is among the five books in The Driftless Series, a publication award program established in 2010 and funded by the Beatrice Fox Auerbach Foundation Fund at the Hartford Foundation for Public Giving. This project is supported in part by an award from the National Endowment for the Arts.

Douglas Knight is a musician and independent scholar who began performing with Balasaraswati's daughter, Lakshmi, in 1974. They were married in 1980. Over four decades, Knight has observed the passage of the hereditary practice of Bharatanatyam through three generations. He continues to perform the family style with his son, Aniruddha, in India and the United States. Knight has been a Fulbright Scholar, a fellow of the American Institute of Indian Studies and the Asian Cultural Council' and a Guggenheim Fellow.


March 30, 2010

THE DANCE OF SHIVA - Fourteen Indian Essays, by Ananda Coomaraswamy
Shivalik Prakashan, 27/16 Shakti Nagar, New Delhi 110007
Price: Rs.300.


Feb 4, 2010

Routledge an imprint of Taylor and Francis Group, has launched a book DANCE MATTERS: PERFORMING INDIA.
About the book:
India has a long tradition, both textual and oral, of producing knowledge about the art - ritual - practice of dance. As new methods of understanding, analysing and teaching emerge, new thinking an investigation is required to show how dance is a foundational socio-cultural development that is local and global, critical and emotional, personal and political.
This anthology makes a dramatic shift from established narratives of dance history and practice to bring to the forefront debates on history, aesthetics, identity, and globalisation, embedded and embodied in and through dance. It thus catapults dance into the vortex of debates in social theory, and reflects its multidimensional aspects by locating it within anthropology, art history, and religious, postcolonial, and feminist studies. This expansion of the discourse on Indian dance infuses the global with local voices, issues, and concerns. The articles attempt to look at dance as a lived and practiced phenomenon in contemporary times. They are unique in that they bring together the thoughts and experiences of both theorists and practitioners, and examine how the meaning and significance of dance has shifted in changing historical and political regimes.
Discussing dance in many of its manifestations - contemporary and historical, classical and folk, commercial and aesthetic - the book seeks to understand this form of human expression that has remained curiously under-explored in academic discourse. Academics and students of cultural studies, fine arts and history, and especially dance departments and institutes will find this useful.
About the Editors:
Pallabi Chakravorty is Assistant Professor and Acting Director of the Dance Program, Swarthmore College, USA.
Nilanjana Gupta is Director, School of Media Communication and Culture, and Professor of English at Jadavpur University, Kolkata
Published by: Routledge, New Delhi
Hardback: 978-0-415-55375-9 (ISBN), Price: Rs. 795, Pages: 312.


Jan 24, 2010

RUKMINI DEVI: A LIFE by Leela Samson, was released by Gopalakrishna Gandhi, former Governor of West Bengal, at Kalakshetra Foundation under the Banyan Tree on 23rd January 2010. The book is a warm and candid portrait of the artist and her times. Spanning eighty years of a momentous century, across continents and countries, from the early 20th century and post-1947 India, this is the story of an extraordinary woman who had a vision of a modern India.
Leela Samson is a dancer, teacher, writer and choreographer of Bharatanatyam. She is deeply influenced by philosophical thought and by the work of Rukmini Devi. She took over as Director of the Kalakshetra Foundation in May 2005.
Published by Penguin Books India, price: Rs.550
Info: (91 - 11) - 4613 1412.

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