Wednesday 15 July 2015

Obit / Tribute - To my teacher Shyamala, with love - Ashwini Karthikeyan

The passing of my dear teacher of classical dance, Shyamala Mohanraj (1941-2015) on July 14, leaves a large vacuum in my being. I met her for the first time two years ago, and it was love at first sight! Her curious, soft eyes and her gentle, kind smile melted all hard edges within. Before I found her, I had been learning with gifted teachers, yet a restlessness burned inside of me.

Read the tribute in the site


  1. Thank you Ashwini for this beautiful tribute. I was visiting Chennai, studying and staying with Shyamala when you were becoming her student. I accompanied her to your land for lunch one day and still remember your drawing of Bala. I miss Shyamala so
    much, this inspires me to write my memories too. Please email me if you feel
    Inspired to.

  2. Thank you Ashwini for sharing your journey with Shyamala Akka. My brother and myself, while studying at Kalakshetra, were payings guests of Akka at her Besant Nagar residence in 1982/84! We had a beautiful relationship with her sharing our views over dance. We met her after many years of gap in 2014 as she came to Pondicherry to visit and we were both crying in each one's arms as we were so moved. These are lifetime bondings that i can not forget. She left too early and so suddenly. I do miss her. She performed for us when she came to Pondicherry!
    Vassanty Manet