Here is what some senior artists plan to present this season…
Come December and every artiste is busy planning something new to offer the discerning rasikas. What are the dancers doing this year? Are they going the Margam way or planning thematic recitals? Will they go solo or join their students? Read on to find out…
Padma Subrahmanyam: I am starting the Season with ‘Bharatikku Anjali' on December 11 as it is Bharatiar's birth anniversary (Kartik Fine Arts). I am reviving this solo and group presentation, which depicts the disorganised state of affairs today. I've choreographed two new programmes -- ‘Jai Sri Krishna', which premieres for Bharat Kalachar on December 25; and ‘Annaiukku Anjali' on January 1, 2011, for Narada Gana Sabha. ‘Jai Sri Krishna' will feature only Oothukaadu Venkata Kavi compositions. As 2011 is my mother Meenakshi Subrahmanyam's birth anniversary, I wanted to perform to her compositions. I have chosen some of her Sanskrit and Tamil songs. I am also reviving ‘Valluvarum Veda Neriyum' (Sri Krishna Gana Sabha, December 19). This work revolves round 70 Tirukurals and six Sanskrit slokas from various religious texts including the Gita and the Upanishads. Apart from this, I have choreographed an offbeat piece which my disciples Gayathri and Mahathi Kannan will perform for KGS. Titled ‘Rasa Karana Nrittha', it will depict the nine rasas but using only the karanas.
Srekala Bharath: A few months ago, I introduced a namasankirtanam in my repertoire for a recital in Tirupati. The response was overwhelming. So, I have decided to present a namasankirtanam to rasikas here. I have two options: ‘Radha Ramana' or ‘Jai Janaki Ramana.' Other pieces will include a newly choreographed Shanmuga Kavuthvam, a rare K.N. Dhandayudhapani Pillai varnam in Nattakurinji and Lalgudi's Revathi thillana. I will adhere to the Margam format, and Lord Muruga will be the leitmotif. While I have six solo shows, my group will give two performances of ‘Aarupadai Veedu'. My first performance will be on December 9.
Meenakshi Chitharanjan: This Season, bhakti and shringara rasas will dominate my repertoire. I am premiering ‘Thaedi Kandu Kondain' (In Search I Found) on December 15 at Bharat Kalachar. The theme will be based on the outpourings of Saivite saints. I will begin with Patanjali's sthotram. Then, I will present Appar's ‘Munnam Avan Naamam,' an amalgam of verses. Appaiah Dikshitar's ‘Maulavaganga' and ‘Thiru Anga Maalai' are the other unusual pieces. It took me three months to figure out the verses best suited for dance. A lot of research and consultations with scholars have gone into this line-up.
Anitha Guha: Bharathanjali turns 20 this year. As a teacher, my aim is to encourage youngsters to take the stage with confidence and groom them to be able to enjoy and appreciate Bharatanatyam. Bharathanjali will stage the energetic ‘Mahadevam Mahasenam Bhaje',first presented nearly a decade ago. It narrates the exploits of Siva and Muruga, and over 50 dancers will participate. The concept and choreography are mine, but the credit for giving it soul goes to my students. The lyric and music have been composed by P.R. Venkatasubramanian. The first performance will be on December 5 for Kartik Fine Arts. We have 12 performances in total.
Chitra Visveswaran: This year, my school Chidambaram Dance Company is re-staging some of my previously choreographed pieces. (Her students are revisiting these items to mark Chitra's 60th birthday).
At Sri Krishna Gana Sabha(December 14), we are presenting ‘Sapta Sapti.' Originally staged as a solo thematic presentation by me, this production revolves round the seven connotations associated with the number 7, using the music of Dikshitar, the lyric of Valmiki and the music of Lalgudi G. Jayaraman. On December 18, at Kartik Fine Arts, we are staging ‘Namasivaya Vazhga.' The lyric of the Nayanmars will form the content.
‘Shakti Trayee' (Bharat Kalachar, December 28) deals with Devi in her manifestations as Durga, Lakshmi and Saraswathi. A varnam by Rajkumar Bharati is central to the production.
‘Raghuvamsa Thilakam,' first presented in 1986, has gone through various avatars and we will present it at The Music Academy on January 5, 2011. Choreographing these pieces has given me immense satisfaction.
Priyadarsini Govind: I am sticking to the traditional Margam but I have selected special pieces for that. We are doing the Patanjali stotram inspired by a composition of Ganesh-Kumaresh, Dhandayudhapani Pillai's varnam ‘Karunai Seidhidavendune' and also the Bhairavi swarajathi ‘Amba Kamakshi. My first performance is on December 19 for Kartik Fine Arts.
Roja Kannan: I am sticking to Margam and will dance to a new pada varnam by Papanasam Sivan in Devamanohari. Also, I plan to present some rare Kshetrayya padams which Kalanidhi mami has taught me. Meanwhile, Parasah (the group comprising Priya Murle, Ashwati, Srikanth and myself) is presenting ‘Prapthi Marga: Path of Complete Surrender' (Bharat Kalachar, December 13) which has Vaishnavite connotations. The profound theme is explained using three characters – Andal (Ashwati), Meera (Priya Murle) and Draupadi (myself). Srikanth will be the sutradhar. For my character, we have drawn heavily from Villibharatham and Dasarnama, besides Bharatiar. We are also re-staging ‘Bharata Samudayam Vazhgavae' as ‘Meendum Bharati' (December 18, Meenakshi College). The new aspect of this dance drama is the addition of Panchali Sabadam.
Keywords: December music season 2010