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Friday Review » Dance

Updated: June 26, 2010 20:02 IST

Standing tall

PRABAL GUPTA
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Satyanarayan Raju performing Bharatanatyam at the launch of 'Attendance' the dance annual of India at the Alliance Francaise. Photo: V. Sreenivasa Murthy
The Hindu Satyanarayan Raju performing Bharatanatyam at the launch of 'Attendance' the dance annual of India at the Alliance Francaise. Photo: V. Sreenivasa Murthy

Satya Narayan Raju's presentation of a deveranama was very dramatic

Satya Narayan Raju, one of the State's finest Bharatnatya exponents is a disciple of late Guru Narmada. He later trained under Guru B. Bhanumati. Raju, who has already created an alcove for himself with his performances both inside and outside the State and the country, bears the stamp of Narmada's genre.

Commencing his recital at the launch of the dance journal “Attendance” recently in Bangalore, with a varna “Devadideva Nataraja” set to Raag Shanmukha Priya in Adi tala, Raju instantaneously created a spark amongst the aficionados.

For a male Bharatnatya dancer to survive, the art of presentation is a major factor. Satya's macho, well-maintained physique with his sharp face is definitely a plus point.

Assiduous involvement

The varna depicts the festival of Lord Nataraja, the God of Dance, at Chidambaram where he resides. A beautiful manifestation of the manodharma was palpable while executing the decoration by the devotees on the streets, where the chariot of the god stands. The scene speaks of the artist's assiduous involvement with the subject.

The item vouches for its overwhelming and dazzling jathis, with its well thought sancharis and the aesthetic combination of the complexities and the juxtaposition of the various permutations and combinations of the adavus. Satya's neat aramandis are definitely a treat for the eyes and concurrently the impeccable teermanams and the adavus executed were highly laudable.

However, the piece de resistance of the evening was a devarnama in Kannada composed by Guru B. Bhanumati set to raga Purvi Kalyani in adi tala. With the lyrics “Hanumantha Deva Namo Namo”, the artist successfully brought out the various rasas of the episodes from Ramayana, concomitant with Hanuman. The archetypal gait of Hanuman, his crossing of the ocean to reach Lankapuri, his metamorphosis into a shorter form to avoid the eyes of the demons to reach Sita — were all magnificently portrayed. The vivid scene of seeing Sita trying to hang herself, the panic-stricken Hanuman crying “Rama Rama Jaya Sita Ram” to make Sita understand that a messenger from Lord Rama has arrived, and the handing over of the ring given to him by Rama — were very dramatically portrayed. Satya's geometric sense in using the proscenium definitely deserves a high applause.

The singer Srivatsa's usage of correct diction with his melodious and bhava filled singing especially during the abhinaya sequences, both in the devarnama and the varna, deserves a standing applause. Supported with a taut nattuvanga by Shakuntala Raghavendra, Vidwan Prabhath on flute, and Vidwan Guru Murthy on mridanga, the programme definitely speaks for a rounded performance.

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