Saturday 6 January 2024

India's biggest annual dance conference: The Natya Kala Conference - Dance Matters: Column by Ashish Mohan Khokar

The Natya Kala Conference is an annual feature of the Krishna Gana Sabha. For those outside Tamil cultural landscape (and this portal and column travels far in the virtual world) sabhas are basically registered art bodies /societies from last century that serve the cause of the arts and culture. What began as a guild is now gold in terms of land and location; power and pelf. Trustees and members are either eminent citizens or families and they are pillars of the art eco systems. They dispense patronage while creating trends. Each may have preferences and power structures, yet, most are genuine and totally devoted to the purpose it was set up for.

So, the Krishna Gana Sabha (KGS) has for 40 years held the NKC (Natya Kala Conference). The current head Y Prabhu (son of R Yagnaraman who started and steered it for decades) with daughter Saashwathi are in-charge and do their duty with finesse, advised by stalwarts and icons in the field.

Rama Vaidyanathan needs no introduction to Indian dance audiences worldwide. A Delhi-based Bharatanatyam dancer, she is now also a star with substance and spunk. A student of Bharatanatyam's benchmark icon Yamini Krishnamurti, Rama is now herself a benchmark in dance and NKC convenorship. This year was dedicated to 'Swarna Saroja' in memory of her mother-in-law, Saroja Vaidyanathan, a veteran Delhi based Bharatanatyam dancer guru who started the Ganesa Natyalaya, whose 50th year anniversary too was being celebrated. 

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1 comment:

  1. Thank you. For those of us who missed it. It is A boon to read sach a concise and comprehensive recollection of the events. Thank you