‘Jai ho Sri Krishnadevaraya' made up for its deficiencies with Koushik Babu's fine performance.
This was a ‘Bhuvanavijayam' of sorts, with A.R Rahman inspired Jai ho this dance drama was more a stage play rather than a ballet. If this historical play made any impact on the audience it was only by virtue of Koushik Babu's attractive persona. Though the protagonist looked a wee bit too tender as ‘Rayaluvaru', this was offset with his dignified delivery of long-winding dialogues in chaste Telugu with a clear diction and an expression to match. He moved with lithe grace in the dance sequence with his queen consort which was perhaps the only place where a dance could be introduced for the principal character.
This apart, the eight gems seated in the royal court of Sri Krishnadevaraya, which forms the opening scene seemed a rather shabby affair. The lack of stage infrastructure was a major setback. While some were dressed in apt costumes despite certain constraints, some others were out of tune with the times being presented on stage. Timmarasu's (Mudigonda SivaPrasad) dialogue delivery, whether directed towards the sovereign or the other litterateurs, lacked the corresponding emotion. Dialogues were repeated in spoken Telugu dialect obviously meant for the audience which was quite unwarranted. The juxtaposition of ‘rasaleela' of Sri Krishna and gopikas with that of the artistic queen and the king was praiseworthy in principle. It could have been a little more suggestive and muted. Srilekha as Krishna looked too feminine. Krishnadevaraya's ‘Amuktamalyada' (the story of Goda Devi) meant to be told picturesquely served the purpose. Srutakeerti as Goda looked convincing.
The group of young dancers would have done a better job with more stage space. Amalapuram Kanna Rao's music was a redeeming feature. Sharada Reddy, V Subbalakshmi on the violin, S. Nageswara Rao on the mridangam and Kranti Kumar on nattuvangam made for a lively orchestra. A dance drama in the dimensions of ‘Jai ho Krishnadevaraya' gets undersized if presented on a stage like Sri Tyagaraja Gana Sabha. The stage play was part of second international women writers' literary meet under the aegis of Vanguri Foundation of America.