Sai Nrityotsava 10
- Mysore B Nagaraj, Bangalore 

March 25, 2010 

On Monday the 1st of March 2010, at Seva Sadan, Bangalore, Sai Nrutyotsava series 10 witnessed a young quartet, 2 duets, one that was trying to impress and the other that truly impressed and 2 artists in their solo performance who left an impact on the spectator, one that of elation and other not so at all.

The Utsav presented in the first of its five segments, Yashaswini, Belli, Arpita and Vandana in a Bharatanatyam recital. Their guru Seema Jawahar chose for them a pushpanjali in Nata raga, Ganesha Pancharatna set in Ragamalika, a jatiswaram in Vasanta raga before they concluded with a Kannada composition selected from DVG's collection of poetry known as Antahapura Geetegalu. Their entire repertoire was set to Adi tala.

Yashaswini, Belli, Arpita and Vandana
Arpita and Aditya

Arpita and Aditya, a brother sister combo, commenced their segment with a Amrutavarshini raga based pushpanjali, offering flowers to Lord Nataraja, their pranams to the eight deities of the cardinal directions and then their supplication to Lord Ganesha. The duo concluded with a Tamil composition "Paal Kadal Alai Mele" elaborating on the incarnations of Lord Vishnu, and sandwiched a Kannada Devaranama "Jagadhodharana" between the first and the third dance acts. 

A dermatologist by profession and performing dance for passion, Dr. Yamini Saripalli had her training in Kuchipudi under the guidance of Guru Vempati Chinna Sathyam and Guru Vempati Ravi Shankar. A Dhanyasi raga-Adi tala padavarnam, popularly believed to be penned by Mysore Sadashiva Rao, while historians believe to be that of the Tanjore Quartet, focusing on the plea of a nayika to her beloved to remove the poisonous impressions that has been seeded by others who are disposed against her, was performed perfunctionarily. Annamacharya's raga Abheri- Khanda Chapu tala based composition "Paluku the nala thalli" a Sakhi's description of Alarmelmanga's moods and situation was the one she chose to conclude her recital.

Yamini Saripalli
Archana and Chetana

In the fifth segment of the festival, prekshakas saw twins Archana and Chetana, performing a well sequenced Bharatanatyam presentation. Starting with a Poorvaranga Vidhi, they meandered through a Ragamalika based Shabdam, a Sourashtra raga Padam before landing on Tillana in Valachi. The training and stamp of their Guru Bhanumathi was seen in every stance and step. Archana's delineation of one nayika's yearning for Lord Shiva in "Thillai Ambalam Than Illai" and Chetana's expression of complaint against a nayika's co-wife in "Aduvum Sholluval Aval" showcased their dexterity in abhinaya while the Mysore Jathi, made famous by Kamala Lakshman and the nrutta in their Tillana established their passion for technical perfection. It was a delight to watch the sisters dancing.

Somashekar Chudanath

The highlight of the evening was the vibrant performance of Somashekar Chudanath's Bharatanatyam. He unleashed an inexhaustible flow of energy across the stage. The vibrations he set forth in movements continued to reverberate even in his meaningful freezes. His youthful countenance showed in every leap, fall and landing. The pace at which he chose to perform the technical elements in each of his presentation was in itself so brisk that time seemed to fly before our eyes. The perfect marriage of nrutta and abhinaya shone in every characterization without letting one over-ride the other. Let alone a male dancer's testosterone in tandava, Somashekar's specialty was also the subtle lasya anga without effeminizing the "purusha patra."  The gamut of emotions that he ran through from being amazed by the cosmic dance of Shiva to the dutiful servitude to a master by Hanumantha and the delusion that Maya engulfs the mind as that of Arjuna, brought the spirit and essence of the poet's work live on stage, even if it were fleeting. While he wowed the audience with his technical exuberance in the opening number "Ananda Natamidum Padam" of Papanasam Shivam, he elated the spectators with dasya bhakthi through his interpretation of Purandara Dasa's " Hanumantha Deva Namo." He gave a beautiful twist to an otherwise technical item of Tillana by seasoning it with a drama of Arjuna's desperation in Kurukshetra. Somashekar made his guru Suparna Venkatesh proud and has etched a name among those wonderful men who have proved that dance is not a prerogative of women. 

Mysore B Nagaraj is the Artistic Director of Articulate, that promotes performing arts and takes social responsibility of the visually challenged.