Sri Krishna Gana Sabha Dance

Aishwarya Balasubramanian's poetic movements

Aishwarya Balasubramanian

Aishwarya Balasubramanian   | Photo Credit: S_R_Raghunathan

It was grace all the way for Aishwarya Balasubramanian

There was beauty all around in Aishwarya Balasubramanian’s (nee Narayanaswamy) Bharatanatyam performance — in the skilful choreography, poetic movements, picture-perfect expressions and the melodious, yet unobtrusive music. The magic was created by the duo, teacher-choreographer Anitha Guha and her senior-most disciple Aishwarya, and by their own admission, most of it through Skype sessions.

Offstage, Anitha has scripted a success story for herself. She has evolved a dance style which is unabashedly lasya-oriented, and marked by clean lines, precision in footwork and posture, and delicate portrayals. There is a hint of ‘filmy’ in the friezes but it passes as an extension of feminine grace, lasya. The adavus are more rounded eschewing the popular preference for straight lines; the pace is fast with deceptively dramatic sollus that manage to save the dancer from over-strain or fatigue.

One could see Anitha’s deft hand in the brisk Ragamalika-talamalika invocatory, which was a combination of three compositions, ‘Vaaranamukhavaa thunai varuvai’ (Hamsadwani, Rupaka, Koteeswara Iyer), ‘Mahaganapathim manasa smaraami’ (Nattai, Adi, Muthuswami Dikshitar) and ‘Sri Mahaganapathe’ (Abhogi, Khanda chapu, N.S Ramachandran), with jathis in tisra and khanda beats. There was speed, grace, beautiful rhythm, excellent execution and smooth transitions, all achieved without any awkwardness.

Outraged nayika

The afternoon belonged to Aishwarya’s delineation of the wronged nayika pleading her case in the Husseini swarajathi, ‘E maayalaadira’ (Rupaka, Melattur Venkatrama Sastry). The nayika is outraged and imitates how the other woman must have cast a spell on her nayaka and poisoned him. The outrage of the heroine as against the wiles of the other woman, were pictured with finesse. It was drama without overdoing it.

The swarajathi on the whole was a delightful affair; the music (K. Hariprasad), the nattuvangam (Balakrishnan), the percussion (Ram Shankar Babu) and the melody (Ishwar Ramakrishnan) blending into a harmonious pageant. It was a winning combination of style, rhythm, melody and grace. Kudos to Anitha!

The team continued with ‘Vazhi maraittirukkude’ (Natakurinji, misra chapu, Gopalakrishna Bharati), in which Aishwarya’s acting gave us goose pimples, the Paras javali ‘Smarasundaranguni’ and the Sindhubhairavi thillana (Adi, Lalgudi Jayaraman). The surprise was that the sheen never wore off.

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Printable version | Feb 17, 2020 1:06:42 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/entertainment/dance/aishwarya-balasubramanians-poetic-movements/article22420403.ece

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