Dance

Scintillating dance ballet

Krishna Vishwaroopam was a an experimentation on stage that showed perfect harmony between the vocalist and the dancers   | Photo Credit: arr

Nadaprabha, with an aim to present novel programmes to audience, featured this time a new concept related to Lord Krishna called ‘Krishnathwa’ — conceived and designed by the well-known Carnatic vocalist, Sweta Prasad. This show was presented at Ravindra Bharati, last week. This unique presentation’s highlight was the sharing of the stage by both dancers and the musicians. The dancers were a mix of students of Bharatanatyam artiste Pramod Kumar and a couple of other artistes. Pramod was in the lead role of Krishna.

The Krishnathwa traits that the ballet brought out were eternal bond of love between Krishna and Yasoda; the bond between Radha and Krishna; the bond between Krishna and Kuchela, Krishna and Draupadi and Arjuna and Krishna. The expansion of these sublime relationships formed the main theme of this production. The songs and slokas that figured as part of playing up these dramas became an instant hit purely because of the rich vocalism of Swetha, who is also the architect of this production that also brought in North Indian style of dance with gopikas and Krishna celebrating with dance holding cymbals in hand.

The ballet commenced with Yasoda and child Krishna’s sequence supported popular song Krishna Nee Begane Baro that narrates the childhood deeds of Krishna. Lalitha Sindhuri as Yasoda and baby Akshaya played these roles impressively.

For Jayadeva’s ashtapadi, woven around Radha and Krishna theme, featuring Pramod Kumar and Koka Vijayalakshmi, it was a display of divine love signified as the union of ‘Jeevatma with Paramatma’. The supporting song was like javali with singer Swetha also taking the role of Sakhi to carry Radha’s message requesting him to get back to her soon..

Lalitha Sindhuri then takes the character of Kuchela, a male character symbolised by spreading a cloth over her shoulders. Poverty ridden Kuchela is so subdued he even hesitates to seek help from his childhood friend Srikrishna, to mitigate his poverty. He then offers fistful of Atukulu (flattened rice) as the only way to honour Krishna. And when he gets back home, Kuchela is shocked watching how richly Krishna returned his humble of gift of Atukulu.

The drama then incorporated a sequence from Mahabharata in which Draupadi is subjected to ignominy by Dussasana, who drags her by hair to Kaurava court and attempts to disrobe her. Responding to her prayer Krishna comes to her rescue. Pramod Kumar as Krishna, Vijayalakshmi as Dussasana and Sindhuri as Draupadi figured in this part.

The final act was that of Mahabharata war scene to where Arjuna as warrior moves in the chariot driven by Krishna. The moment he sees his gurus and cousins, Arjuna gets jittery detesting to go to war with them. Krishna then reveals his Vikswaroopam. Sridevi as Arjuna and Pamod Kumar as Krishna figured in this sequence.

There were other dancers Arni Gayatri, Madhuri, Gita Poojita and Bhagyasri. The ensemble led by vocalist Sweta Prasad had I.V. Renuka Prasad on mridangam, Saikumar on violin, Pramod on flute, Sridharacharya on percussion and R. Srikanth on tabla. All these artistes could be seen on the stage, set in three levels.

Earlier there was brief Carnatic vocal recital by P. Malavika, disciple of Mohanakrishna, in the company of Rajasekhar on violin and Ch. Ramakrishna on mridangam.

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Printable version | May 11, 2021 10:20:18 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/features/friday-review/dance/nadaprabhas-presentation-of-krishnatwa-was-impressive/article7255530.ece

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