Monday 28 August 2017

Dancers as organizers - TRENDING by Ashish Mohan Khokar

Dancers are being innovative in trying to create all kinds of performing platforms for their art. Patronage systems are such that today there are more dancers than platforms available. Look at Balasaraswati’s time or 20 years later still, in Yamini Krishnamurthy’s era. In each form, there were a handful of dancers only. Say 5 in Bala amma’s or Shambhu Maharaj’s times; 10 in Yamini’s or Uma Sharma’s; 20 in Valli’s and now 200!  Every bio-data boasts of awards, rewards, tours and titles. It seems it has never been so good for the dance and dancers. India is dancing! 

And celebrating special occasions are dancers: Jigyasa Giri of Chennai takes her Kathak to Delhi, to perform for a cause while Ranjana Gauhar of Delhi brings artistes from all over India to showcase in her Saare Jahan Se Acha festival. A Kalari initiative next to Adishakti in Pondicherry premieres its work called BHU and to BHU (Benaras Hindu University) comes ace Kathak talent from Mauritius, Dr. Putanjani "Vandana" Purgus, to admit her niece in this famed university. In Baroda, Harish Gangani is all set to retire after decades of serving Baroda MSU Dance Dept., which his father late Guru Pt. Sundarlal Gangani first came to when my father engaged gharana gurus to teach at university level - Tanjorkar for BN and Sundarlal ji for Kathak, Saxena sahib for table… And in Chennai, the season is agog with thematic events.

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1 comment:

  1. As always superbly worded - precise, honest, and replete with relevant details and information by Shri Ashish Khokar. Even those who have not been able to attend any of the performances can get a glimpse and an interesting insight into the work and changing dynamics of Indian classical dance and dancers across the country and abroad from this article.
    When we took Kathak from Chennai to Delhi a few weeks ago, it was like taking a bride in her new avatar to her maike(parental home). And with God's grace the performance was well attended and appreciated by a charming Delhi audience that included doyens such as Saroja Vaidyanathan ji along with dignitaries Mrs. Manmohan Singh, Syeeda Hameed and Smt.Sushma Seth to name a few who stayed till the end and made it a point to appreciate and bless the dancers.
    It re-iterates that hard work,  aesthic eye for detail, honest representation and surrender to the Lord paves the way for creative evolution, thereby leading to a beautiful performance - audience - critic synergy.