‘Poornathrayee' reaffirmed of the genius of the Dhananjayans as choreographers and dancers

‘Poornathrayee' by the veteran Dhananjayans and their disciples enclosed dramatic presentations within the package of a Bharatanatyam recital. The brisk movements of the group of 11 dancers along with maestro V. P. Dhananjayan whipped up an evening of lively natyam. The performance was split in three parts with the objective of relating themes of mythology, history and the present day. Each section was said to target three types of audience -- Uttama, Madhyama and Saadharana (enlightened, educated and ignorant), respectively.

‘Sree Ganapathy' in Saurashtram was a resonant prelude in Telugu with quaint steps that replicated the sway and gait of the elephant god. Saint Tyagaraja's lyric was laced with devotional fervour and gave a warm lift to the evening.

A flurry of movements accompanied by arresting poses formed the fabric of the ‘Dasavatara Varnanam' by Swati Tirunal. This was a spirited piece where the rasikas could find much to admire, with a range of ragas from Mohanam curving through Dhanyasi, Atana and Nattakurinji. There were quite a few sparks in the dancing here: the rescue of Bhoomi Devi, the triumph of Parasurama and the subduing of the tempestuous river (by Balarama) were some of the actions promptly performed by the group.

But the recurrent fast strides to change positions and similar hurried moves had a differing effect - where the sum of the parts in ‘Dasavataram' did not quite add up. The coalesced vision of ‘The One God' who manifests in many ways remained, for this evening at least, diffused energy.

Scenes from the dance drama ‘Sanghamitra,' penned by Dr. V. Subhramaniam, took up the next section. V. P. Dhananjayan as Emperor Asoka and Divya as his daughter Meghaveni, enacted the crucial scene where the emperor has a change of mind after the bloodbath. Dhananjayan's bragger justifying his triumph and his brutal treatment of the vanquished drew the scenes from the pages of the script and transformed it as a live occurrence right before the eyes of the audience. Divya as Meghaveni rose to the occasion with appropriate expressions of outrage and disgust.

The harmonious efforts of vocalist Sasidharan, mridangam artist Ramesh Babu , violinist Kalai Arasan and flautist Sunil Kumar were led by Shanta Dhananjayan's impeccable nattuvangam.

‘Nritta Tarangini' in Katanakutuhalam was the final section where rhythm played the trump card in the form of vivid combinations in Adi talam. Here was a composition which truly illumined the essence of pure natyam.

Talented dancers, Suresh Sridhar, Venkatakrishnan, Gopukiran, Umesh Bheemanna, Uttio Barua, Anand. S, Pavitra Srinivasan, Mahalakshmi Balaji, Anusha and Maya, contributed to the special appeal of ‘Purnathrayee.'

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Vidya SaranyanDecember 27, 2011