Friday, 6 March 2015

Seen & Heard by Lakshmi Viswanathan - Performing Gurus

In the olden days there were no performing Gurus. At least not in Bharatanatyam. As early as the Silappadikaram, there are references to male dancers. They were known by different names... like Koottan, Chakkai Koottan etc. In those centuries, diverse dance forms existed and each mode required different participants. Going by descriptions we know that what we call folk forms today were part of the list of dances prevalent. I don’t wish to go into Margi and Desi definitions. Each age had its own attitude to dance and we today can only conjecture what experts of those times thought about various modes. There seems to have been no divisions like classical, and folk. The skill for each mode was respected, recognized and honoured. This is my surmise after reading many texts. 

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