Vidhya Subramanian performs in Austin
- Anuradha Naimpally

October 20, 2013

The Indian Classical Music Circle of Austin (ICMCA) is a volunteer run non-profit organization based in Austin, Texas, and supported by the City of Austin.  ICMCA produces 8 to 9 high caliber artists of a variety of genres each year. ICMCA's mission is to bring the very best of Indian classical music and dance to Central Texas. Having been in operation since 1991, they have produced 180+ concerts of classical music, both Carnatic and Hindustani, as well as all styles of Indian classical dance. That organizations like ICMCA support our efforts is encouraging for artistes like myself, who have diligently maintained our dance traditions abroad and yet forayed into open minded innovations as well.

On October 12th, ICMCA presented San Jose, CA based Bharatanatyam dancer Vidhya Subramanian. A disciple of Guru S.K. Rajarathnam Pillai and Kalanidhi Narayanan, Subramanian presents the graceful and strong Vazhuvoor style, along with emotive abhinaya. Accompanied by an ensemble also based in various parts of the US, they all complimented each other without overpowering. Subramanian and her group, which included GS Rajan’s mellifluous flute, presented traditional repertoire opening with a Pushpanjali composed by Madurai Muralidharan which was followed by Sambu Natanam, a vigorous piece depicting the all-perceiving Shiva.

Subramanian continued with the popular varnam “Mohamaginen…” in Karaharapriya, expressing in poetic terms the passion and longing of the nayika for her beloved Shiva. Interspersed with crisp jatis, the choreography brought out the yearning mood of the virahotakantita nayika. The varnam was followed by three padams, including one depicting Durga, with the performance falling on the final night of Navaratri. Out of the two Krishna padams, the ashtapadi “Yahi Madhava…” in Sindhu Bhairavi was most touching. Subramanian depicted the khandita nayika with a full range of emotion bringing out her sense of betrayal with reserve as an uttama, or dignified woman. To end the program, a Lalgudi Jayaraman thillana in Revathi was presented.

A wonderful evening of traditional repertoire by Vidhya Subramanian and the ensemble that included Sindhu Natarajan on vocals, Santosh Chandru on mridangam, GS Rajan on flute and Vivek Ramanan on nattuvangam. It should be noted that young Ramanan, only in 12th grade, did a fine job in his debut performance.

Anuradha Naimpally is a solo Bharatanatyam dancer based in Austin, TX and is artistic director of Austin Dance India.