Mahishasuramardini - nritya natika 
June 12, 2008 

Natya Shastra Vibhaag, Dr. Babasaheb Ambedkar Marathawada University, Aurangabad presented MAHISHASURAMARDINI - nritya natika as part of the inauguration of the 31st Natya Mahotsav on 2nd June 2008. 

The story and concept as depicted in the performance and the message portrayed. 

Mahishasuramardini is an age-old drama depicting the victory of the good over the evil.

The evil is no less powerful, in fact it is powerful than the Mightier, the gods. He is intelligent, brave and strong.  All the gods come together and create a power "Shakti" which has the combination of all powers from all the gods together. This is manifested in the form of Durga. 

In the myth, with her charm and valour, she lures Mahisha and finally overpowers him. 

In today's time we have Mahishas in every aspect of life; with their intelligence and strength they rule our unsatiated hunger for power. In modern times, Mahisha uses this human weakness for his own good and becomes stronger and stronger. We feed Mahisha, we nurture Mahisha by constantly craving for his luring. 

We make him more and more powerful. The obsolete power turns him into a demon and he starts destroying everything in frenzy. This demon enters into the glass house of our dreams and destroys everything that we desire.

We need goddess to destroy and control this demon, who will create the goddess "shakti" for us to quell the demon.   We are no gods to create one nor do we have the power to overwhelm the demon.

To defeat Mahisha we have to control the Mahisha by controlling our desire, by resisting the unsatiated hunger for more, by checking our dreams for their falsehood and sky rocketing ambitions.

Mahisha is not out there, Mahisha is amongst us, we are the Mahishas. 

 It is time for us to rise and give birth together like gods, a collective power "shakti" which will save us from the peril of Mahisha.
We are the Mahisha and Mahishasuramardini.

The above poem was the theme of the dance drama and it was a blend of traditional with the modern. The choreography had many new concepts, which came as a surprise, the highlight being the use of masks and the cloth to depict urban world. The music was mostly instrumental and the choreography consisted of classical, folk and martial dance forms.

It was directed and choreographed by V Soumyasri (Bharatanatyam and Kuchipudi dancer / teacher, faculty at Natya Shastra Vibhaag for dance/ choreography and director of the institute Devmudra - a movement school, Aurangabad ) and conceived by R D Pawar.

The inauguration of the festival was by Sagar Sarhadi, the famous filmmaker and the writer and Vice Chancellor Dr. Nagnath Kotapalle presided over the function.

The Head of the dept., Dr. Shashikant Burhunpurkar conceived the festival and guided all the plays.

There were around 14 artistes, all students of Natya Shastra Vibhaag, who played their parts beautifully - Pooja Gaikwad as Mahishasuramardini, Priyanka Waghre as Kali Mata, Priyanka Jadav as Devi, Mayuri Panse as Shiva, Vaidyanath Rathore as Mahishasura  displayed exceptional performance and Gokul Gaikwad, Rupesh Paratwagh, Tanaji Waghmare and Vinod Kharat as bulls were good.

Shraddha Waghmare, Surekha Jadhav and Pranita Pawar were the other dancers and Gautam Sonwane as Narasimha and Raju Shinde as Varaha were powerful.

It was something new and fresh for Aurangabad audience.