your gateway to the world of Indian dance

November 2019


It is not up to you to decide if you are good or not
Leave your channels of inspiration open
Let the movement flow
Surrender your spirit to the dance
It is for others to decide, not you.
- Martha Graham's advice to choreographer Agnes De Mille about Self Doubt

Diwali in India this year was more subdued than usual, with the eco activists asserting their voice against bursting crackers. I was away from home and missed the welcome bustle of domestic cheer that has accompanied my annual Deepavali (as we South Indians say) in Chennai. For over a decade I have missed being woken by my mother and grandmother at 4am and led to the bathing areas for a special oil bath with turmeric paste and sesame oil while their soothing voices would sing that famous Telugu song SITA KALYANAM VAIBHOGAME...

This year I am not home to supervise the same ritual for my daughter Arya, who, incidentally, refuses to allow me to sing the words to the song, citing it as a patriarchal custom. So instead I just hum the tune to her.
I miss the rustle of a new silk sari and the excitement of visiting my elders and good friends, sharing news and plain town gossip.

Deepavali away from home just does not feel like a festival for me. And on that very day, October 27, I arrived in San Mateo, Bay Area, California. What greeted me was a giant power outage and zero connectivity! Imagine in the tech centre of Silicon Valley to have the raging California fires threaten not just lives but the working of so many homes!

It is festival season and I must begin on a positive note!

Read on...

ROVING EYE: A section of impressions, images and inspirations
Curated by Anita Ratnam


- During their Indradhanush Dilli festival, Sunaina honors gurus Geetanjal Lal (Kathak), Santosh Nair (Chhau and Contemporary dance) on Nov 7, and Seetha Nagajothy (Kuchipudi) and Dr. TV Manikandan (Carnatic music) on Nov 8, 2019 with the GURU SAMMAN at the Muktadhara Auditorium, Delhi. Dr. Alpana Nayak receives PARAS MANI SAMMAN for her remarkable training to disabled children in Odissi.

- Bharatanatyam dancer G Narendra received the NARTAKA AWARD of Natyanjali Trust from Prof. A Janardhanan at the 13th Nartaka Festival held on October 10, 2019 at Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan, Chennai.

- Utkal Dance and Research Academy presented GURU SAHADEV PADHI MEMORIAL AWARD to musician / vocalist Pt Ramhari Das, on October 15, 2019 at Rabindra Mandap, Bhubaneswar.

- Aswathy Nair received the KERALA SANGEETHA NATAKA AKADEMI AWARD at Kollam, Kerala, on October 16, 2019.

- On 28th October 2019 Tridhara Bhubaneswar presented GURU DEBAPRASAD AWARD at Rabindra Mandap, Bhubaneswar on the inaugural day of the 13th Guru Debaprasad Award Festival to V.P. Dhananjayan and Shanta Dhananjayan (Bharatanatyam), Durga Charan Ranbir (Odissi), Raghav Raj Bhatt and Mangala Bhatt (Kathak), and Dr.Nita Vidyarthi (art critic). Rathimalar Govindarajoo (Odissi and Bharatanatyam), Amrita Das, Binayak Panda and Atasi Mishra (Odissi) received GURU DEBAPRASAD NRUTYA PRATIVA AWARD.

- Sreelatha Vinod received the EntreprenHER award by the Razzmatazz group on October 3, 2019 at Chennai.


Pt Jwala Prasad (16 July 1956 - Oct 3, 2019), well known musician and SNA awardee who accompanied Kathak dancers, passed away in Delhi after a protracted illness.

Mridangist Vasanthapuram Chandrashekar passed away on October 6, 2019. He was a sought after percussionist by both musicians and dancers. He used to organize the VRC Academy of Music and Dance Festival in Bangalore.

S.V. Seshadri, musicologist and ex-station director of AIR Delhi, passed away at his home in Chennai on October 16, 2019 aged 94. He was unique, with an encyclopedic mind on music, mythology and much more. A deep man, he sat quietly musing about music. He composed many songs and textual inputs for veterans like guru M.K.Saroja and younger stars like Malavika Sarukkai. An avid reader of classics from Chaucer to Chari, he used language skills to his advantage by making difficult concepts, accessible. He wrote authoritative reviews and articles for The Hindu, Sruti and attenDance. He was married to Meera Seshadri, who predeceased him by over a decade and he was lovingly looked after by his nephew Diwakar and his wife Gayatri. An era of real knowledge has passed away.
(Tribute by Ashish Mohan Khokar)

PV Krishnamoorthy passed away in Chennai on October 17, 2019, aged 98. Born on 1 April 1921 in Yangon, Myanmar, PVK made wide-ranging contributions to the development of dance, music, and broadcasting in India. For the greater part of his career he served the All India Radio, working as Station Director in various cities. He was the first Director General of Doordarshan, an organization he helped bring into being. He was trained in Carnatic music by his sister Rajeshwari and his brother P. V. Subramaniam (Subbudu), the veteran arts critic. He had a Bachelor's degree from the University of Rangoon. A pioneer and a visionary, when in Cuttack, he nurtured many legends like Kelucharan Mohapatra, Hariprasad Chaurasia, Bhubaneswar Mishra, and more. While serving in Kerala, he got the Kottakal Kathakali troupe to stage the only attakatha on Buddha titled Buddha Charitham. As Station Director in Calcutta, he worked with many gifted musicians, and conducted programs by outstanding singers. PVK was associated with Sangeet Natak Akademi as Vice-Chairman (1983-1988), and worked as media consultant to UNICEF for over a decade.
More info

Known for his immense contribution to the Gotipua tradition, legendary Gotipua Guru Birabara Sahoo passed away on October 29, 2019. He was the mentor/Guru for Konark Natya Mandap of Guru Gangadhar Pradhan, in Konark, Odisha.


Pickle Factory presents
Season 2, 2019: Widening Circles

Nov 1 - 29, 2019 Kolkata

Stem Dance Kampni presents
Under the Raintree: Women's Cultural Festival

Bangalore International Center
Nov 2 and 3, 2019 Bangalore

Sampradaya Dance Creations presents

Flato Markham Theatre, 8pm
Nov 7, 2019 Markham, Canada

Natya Dance Theater premieres
Inai - The Connection

Nov 7 - 10, 2019 Chicago


THE EASTERN EYE: Column by Dr.Utpal K Banerjee

Start-up nurturing nascent talents
Nritya Navin 2019 presented on Sept 23 and 24 by Nipun Nrityalaya, was the culmination of sponsorship efforts of a very refreshing "angel" in the form of Manojit Saha, Nipun's director and a Bharatanatyam dancer of repute...

Values across millennia - feminism, feudalism
MEDEA presented by Rangapat is a brilliant transcreation of the Euripides original, with gorgeous sets and a brilliantly handled, masked Chorus.... Literally meaning the 'Mansion of the Lantern-carrying Gentleman', the play 'Lanthan Saheber Bungalow' was presented by Nandimukh as a tribute to their founder, the iconic Bengali actor Ajitesh Bandyopadhyay...


Dazzling 'Ahuti' by Nrityagram ensemble and Chitrasena Dance Company
'Ahuti' meaning 'offering' is one more collaborative work of Nrityagram with Sri Lankan dancers. This time there is addition of two brilliant male dancers well versed in Kandyan dancing, Kushan Milind and Akila Palipana, along with the two female dancers Thaji Dias and Sandani Sulochani...

Assam Diary:
Sri Sri Madhavdev Award, visit to Narayanpur and Sri Sri Madhavdev's Sattra

When I received the news from the Department of Culture, Govt. of Assam that I had been selected for Sri Sri Madhavdev Award for the year 2019, I was delighted. The venue for conferring the award was Narayanpur, the birthplace of Sri Sri Madhavdev.

Shobha Deepak Singh's enthralling dance-drama 'Shri Ram'
For the past 63 years Sri Ram Bharatiya Kala Kendra's production of Ramleela continues to enchant the audiences. In fact, it needs an independent special history.

SOCH: Column by Dr. Arshiya Sethi

Dance stories from around the world
I have been travelling internationally a lot since being awarded the post doctoral Fulbright. Subsequently, I attended several dance conferences, like the annual Dance Studies Association's conference, and engaged with the most recent dance scholarship

TAALAM: Column by Leela Venkataraman

Blend of maturity and grace in double bill concert
The program wing of India International Centre certainly hit the right button in its choice of Divya Ravi and Abhayalakshmi as a Bharatanatyam/Odissi twosome for the Double Bill Concert.

Endemic problems stir animated discourse
Prachi Hota's planning of a discussion SAMANUBHASANA mounted at the IIC Annex provided a good platform for a free exchange of views on certain issues which the arena of classical dance will always have to contend with.

DANCE MATTERS: Column by Ashish Mohan Khokar

Dancing doctors!
And one thought doctors were these noble but boring people who had no time for anything else leave alone the arts. Well, just as there are a few really good dancers who can cure bad evenings, likewise there are a few good doctors who can dance too!

Not Just AnyBODY: A health and fitness column

The Bharathanatomy Series: Introduction to Muscles
- Sneha Rajagopalan
This month we will discuss Muscles; Bundles of fibre which possess the potential to contract. Muscles can contract (activate) in various ways to a) generate movement and/or b) maintain a position.


From Bharata's Natyamandapam to Kathak Proscenium

- Sunil Sunkara
This essay looks at the Purvaranga Vidhi described in chapter V of the Natyashastra, focusing on the components of the purvaranga that became a part of the Kathak parampara....

SNA award for Kuchipudi
- Madhavi Puranam
The latest Sangeet Natak Akademi award for Kuchipudi is given to a Bharatanatyam dancer who studied at Kalakshetra, Chennai, and has been a member of the faculty in the Central University of Hyderabad for decades teaching Bharatanatyam in the Dance Department.

Meet the artistes

SANCHARI.. More on the arts



Nov 1 - 16, Kolkata, Jaipur, Singapore
Schedule for Aditi Mangaldas and Drishtikon.
- Nov 1, Kolkata: IMMERSED by Aditi Mangaldas at Pickle Factory Season 2
Venue: G.D. Birla Sabhaghar, 6:45pm
- 2 Nov, Kolkata: Exploring the Spine in Kathak - a workshop with Aditi Mangaldas
At: Udayan Kala Kendra, 10.30am to 12 noon (followed by a conversation with the artist)
This is a workshop open to Kathak dancers only.
- Nov 9, Jaipur: UNCHARTED SEAS by Aditi Mangaldas Dance Company - Drishtikon Dance Foundation at Dance in the Park
Venue: Central Park
- Nov 16, Singapore: INTER_RUPTED by Aditi Mangaldas Dance Company - Drishtikon Dance Foundation at Kala Utsavam Indian Festival of Arts.
Venue: Esplanade Theatre, 8pm

Nov 1 and 16, Bangalore
Schedule for Natya Stem Dance Kampni
- Nov 1: Lec dem for a French delegation
- Nov 16: KAMPNI KUTCHERI is an inititative to bring back solo chamber concerts which provides an intimate space for audiences. This Children's edition features Bharatanatyam by Akshata Vishwanath (Upadhye School of Dance), Kathak by Shraghvi.S, Nainika Reddy and Spruha Savinay (Natya Institute of Kathak and Choreography), Odissi by Angleena Avnee (Nrityantar Dance Academy)
At: Natya Studio, #37, Bhoomika, 17th Cross, Malleshwaram, Bangalore 560055

Nov 1 - 30, Mysore, Singapore, Guwahati, Mumbai
Dr. Sunil Kothari's itinerary for month of November.
- Nov 1 and 2, Mysore: Dr Vasundhara Doreswamy's 70th birthday celebrations
- Nov 8 to 12, Singapore: Samarpana Dance Festival
- Nov 16 and 17, Guwahati: Nrityaparva Sattriya Annual Dance Festival
- Nov 27, Mumbai: The Museum Society, Screening of film on Mrinalini Sarabhai
- Nov 28 to 30, Mumbai: 50th year of NCPA Golden Jubilee, ADD ART FEST performances by Mallika Sarabhai, Astad Deboo, lec-dem by Darshana Jhaveri (Manipuri), Dr. Sunil Kothari - Sattriya screening of film 'From Mists of Majuli', Swapnokalpa Dasgupta (Odissi)

Nov 2 - 23, Bangalore, Mumbai, Odisha
Schedule for Ileana Citaristi and Art Vision.
- 2nd-3rd Nov, Bangalore: Ileana Citaristi conducts two day Chhau dance workshop at Shoonya Space, Lalbagh Main Road, from 10am to 2pm on both days followed by a performative lecture on Chhau on the 2nd at 7pm.
- 7th Nov, Mumbai: Ileana Citaristi takes part in CROSS-CULTURAL CONVERSATIONS, a discussion focused on Indian classical dance practitioners who have had the experience of working in two more countries and contexts. Organised by Beej in collaboration with Ankh, at Ankh space, Deonar, 6.30pm
- 9th Nov, Navi Mumbai: Ileana Citaristi and Art Vision perform Odissi dance for ODISHA FEST, at Seawoods Grand Central, Navi Mumbai, 7pm
- 12th Nov, Paradeep: Art Vision performance for opening day of KALINGA BALIYATRA FESTIVAL organised by District Administration at Paradeep, Odisha, 7pm
- 17th Nov, Bhubaneswar: Ileana Citaristi presents solo Odissi item for the 2ND SHREE NRUTYOTSABA FESTIVAL organised by Shree Dance Academy at Rabindra Mandap, 7pm
- 23rd Nov, Cuttack: Art Vision participates with an Odissi presentation in the 23RD GUNJAN DANCE AND MUSIC FESTIVAL organised by Gunjan Dance Academy, Saheed Bhavan, 7pm

Nov 3, Mumbai
Sri Shanmukhananda Fine Arts and Sangeetha Sabha presents ANNAMAYYA, a thematic dance presentation by Parvathi Ravi Ghantasala and artists of Kala Pradarshini.
Venue: Sri Shanmukhananda Fine Arts and Sangeetha Sabha, Sion East, 6pm

Nov 4, Pune
Horizon Series, ICCR in collaboration with Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan, Pune Kendra and Infosys Foundation presents an evening of Bharatanatyam by Parvathi Ravi Ghantasala.
At: BVB's Sarder Mahadeo Balwant Natu Sabhagriha, Shivaji Nagar, 6.30pm

Nov 4 - 27, Delhi and Hyderabad
Schedule for Raja-Radha Reddy and Natya Tarangini.
- 4th Nov: Lec-dem at Janki Devi Memorial College, Delhi University by Raja-Radha Reddy, 11.30am
- 5th Nov: AIR Recording for Raja-Radha Reddy
- 10th Nov: Yamini Reddy and group perform DRISHYA KAVYA - Poetry in Movement, at Ravindra Bharathi, Hyderabad, 6.15pm
- 27th Nov: Rangapravesam of Avika Bassi, Kamani Auditorium, Delhi, 7pm

Nov 6, Mumbai
Nritarutya presents SATTVAM contemporary Indian dance choreographed by Mayuri and Madhuri Upadhya.
At: Prithvi Theatre, 8pm

Nov 6 - 10, Andamans, Kolkata
Schedule for Sapphire Creations in Nov 2019.
- 6th-8th Nov, Port Blair, Andaman Islands: Sapphire Creations presents SAPPHIRESCOPE in DWEEP MAHOTSAV (Island Tourism Festival 2019) organised by EZCC and Dept of Tourism, Andaman and Nicobar Administration in different venues in Port Blair. Sapphirescope is a mosaic of fusion, Contemporary and popular dance acts drawn from tradition and modernity which celebrates life and indulges in fun frolic and fiesta.
- 8th Nov, Kolkata: Sapphire Creations led by Sudarshan Chakravorty choreographs an opening act for Calcutta Times FRESH FACE Contest with more than 20 contestants followed by a performance by Sapphire repertory of GARDEN OF MAYA set to music by Ranjit Barot.
At: Axis Mall, New Town, Kolkata, 4pm.
- 10th Nov, SappTop, Kolkata: MOVEMENT WORKSHOP Fuitt Fuitt Technique led by Compagnie 7273, Switzerland in SAPPTOP as part of Pickle Factory Season 2. Laurence Yadi and Nicolas Cantillol from the company lead an intensive workshop for students and dance enthusiasts of Kolkata.
At: SappTop, CF 80, Salt Lake, 4pm to 7pm

Nov 9, Vancouver, BC
Mandala Arts and Culture presents Bharatanatyam performance by Renjith and Vijna from Chennai.
At: Scotiabank Dance Centre, 7.30pm

Nov 9 - Dec 1, Aurangabad
In line with its ongoing efforts to generate more interest and understanding about Aurangabad Heritage, MAHAGAMI has been presenting dance concert series AURA AURANGABAD conceptualised as a tribute. These concerts held on weekends during the tourist season (Nov-Dec) have been an enriching cultural treat for the cultural seekers, visitors and tourists. Aura Aurangabad has completed 6 seasons of around 150 concerts to more than 5000 connoisseurs and tourists.
The launch of Aura Aurangabad Season 7 is on 9 Nov, 7pm at Mahagami Gurukul.
The dates are Nov 9 and 10, Nov 16 and 17, Nov 23 and 24, Nov 30 and Dec 1.

Nov 10, San Jose, CA
Abhinaya Dance Company presents DEVI VIVIDA ROOPINI featuring solo presentations by Artistic Director Mythili Kumar and others and traditional repertoire by students.
At: Independence High School, 617 N Jackson Ave, 2pm

Nov 15 - 17, Kollam, Kerala
The 6th THRINETHRA DANCE and MUSIC FESTIVAL is conceptualised by Neelamana Sisters and Natyapriya Dance Academy, Kollam, in association with Save Kidney Foundation.
- Nov 15: Aruna Mohanty (Odissi)
- Nov 16: K.Murali Mohan and Nandini K. Mehta (Kathak duet) of Nadam Dance
- Nov 17: Parvathy Menon and Shijith Nambiar (BN duet)
Venue: Sopanam Auditorium, Kollam, 6pm

Nov 17, Kolkata
Sparsh Studio for Performing Arts presents TAAL CONNECT chapter 4 featuring Rudra veena recital by Bahauddin Dagar. Conceptualised by Suman Sarawgi and Sangeeta Dudhoria.
At: Azimganj Terrace, 7 Camac Street, 6.30pm

Nov 30, Pune
NRITYA DHAARA, Kathak performance by three generations of dancers from one family: Guru Maneesha Sathe with daughter Shambhavi Dandekar, daughter-in-law Tejaswini Sathe and granddaughter Sarveshwari Sathe.
Venue: Yashwantrao Chavan Natya Gruha, 6.30pm

Nov 2, Bangalore
Swarna Manikandan, disciple of Kiran Subramanyam-Sandhya Kiran, Rasika Arts Foundation
At: ADA Rangamandira, 6.30pm (Bharatanatyam)

Nov 27, New Delhi
Avika Bassi, disciple of Raja-Radha Reddy, Natya Tarangini
At: Kamani Auditorium, 7pm (Kuchipudi)

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