Saturday, 7 September 2013

Seen & Heard by Lakshmi Vishwanathan - Striking a pose

In Bharatanatyam performances, audiences are treated to "poses" by dancers.  When I was a young girl learning dance, I used to attend performances of senior dancers every now and then and I noticed that some gurus had taught their students to give statuesque poses, while others eschewed them completely. For example, Guru Vazhuvur Ramaiah Pillai's students struck the Nataraja and other poses at frequent intervals in their shows, whilst the students of Pandanallur Chokkalingam Pillai were more reticent with poses.  I noticed also that Balasaraswathi never lifted her leg in the Nataraja pose. I assumed then that perhaps it was because of her age (then in her forties) or perhaps she was heavier in build as compared to many others whom I saw in performance. Later, I read Dr. Raghavan, her mentor. He was very disapproving of unnecessary poses and thought they were aberrations! He used phrases like "rasabhasa" meaning contrariness to Rasa, which said it all. I loved that brevity of expression.

Read the article in the site

1 comment:

  1. This is so well written and presented for the reader to seriously think about the purpose of dance movement and intent. Thank you for sharing your thoughts.