Wednesday, 6 July 2016

Article - Understanding Sattvika abhinaya - Dr. Gauri Ponkshe

The ancient Indian idea of 'drama' varied from the present-day perception of the same. As per the ancient concept, drama did not consist of speech alone but also included mime, song and body movements including dance. And 'nāṭya', as it was termed, was, meant to evoke rasa - the divine aesthetic pleasure in the spectator. Rasa, being, the relish of human emotions happens only if the artiste's performance effectively engrosses the spectator's mind away from mundane things to a world of aesthetic beauty and bliss. According to Bharata in his Nāṭyasāstra, the 'birth of rasa' is said to be the ultimate aim of the nāṭya. This is to be achieved by the artiste by conveying intended emotions with the tool of abhinaya and other important constituents of drama. The Sanskrit word 'abhinaya' is made up of the prefix abhi 'towards' and the root ni 'to carry'. It can be understood as "disclosing the various aspects of the theme to the spectator by means of words, gestures, costumes etc." It is a suggestive imitation of the various psychological states of characters in the theme. 

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