Dance Rukmini Kalyanam and Ksheera Sagara Madhanam were staged in memory of Kuchipudi guru Vempati Chinna Satyam. P. Surya Rao
`Mummaneni Subbarao Siddhartha Kalapeetham of Vijayawada conducted a two-day dance drama in memory of legendary Kuchipudi guru Padma Bhushan awardee Vempati Chinna Satyam, who passed away recently. Two of his creations Rukmini Kalyanam and Ksheera Sagara Madhanam were staged at Siddhartha auditorium under the direction of Vempati Ravishankar, son of the legend. The two day memorial programme was inaugurated by N.Venkateswarlu, president of Siddhartha Educational Society.
The script written by S.V. Bhujangaraya Sarma was complimented by the musical score by P.Sangeeta Rao. Rukmini Kalyanam was staged on the first day. The episode taken from Bhagavatam narrated the story of Rukmini’s love and subsequent elopement with Krishna. The story beautifully unfolded with fine performances by a 40-member team directed by Vempati Ravishanker. Priyanka was perfect in the role of Rukmini. Convincing performances also came from Ashrita Vempati (Srikrishna), Sudhir (Sisupala), Y.Hanumanta Rao (Rukmi) and Jagannadh (Agnidyotana). Minor roles were played by Aruna, Sirisha, Chavali Bala Tripura Sundari,Mahati, Krishna Sindhu, Gaisha, Kalyani, Sivani and others. Vempati’s stamp was there all through the dance drama. Simple but elegant sets, attractive costumes and melodious music amply complimented the ballet.
On the next day, another famous creation of Vempati Chinna Satyam, Ksheera Sagara Madhanam was staged. There were a few women characters in this ballet. The prime role of Mohini was brilliantly played by Ch. Ajaykumar. The dance drama was scripted by Devulapalli Krishna Sastry and music was composed by Balantrapu Rajanikanta Rao. The ballet enacted the churning of the ocean by Danavas and Devatas. Ravishanker conducted the intricate nattuvangam assisted well by Kalpana Srinivas. Good vocal support came from D.S.V.Sastri and K.R.Sudharani. Orchestral support was adequate. Except for a few, the cast of the dance drama was the same as in Rukmini Kalyanam . The roles of the main characters were well played by Ajay Srinivasa Murthy (Bali), Lalita Kalyani (Vishnu), K.Vijayasekhar (Vasuki), M.Ramachandra Murthy (Halahala), Ashrita (Siva) and Raghunath (Sukracharya).