Dance

Of bhakti and bhava

Bharatanatyam by Akila  

Akhila Kovvuri, an 18-year-old disciple of guru Hemamalini Arni gave a Bharatanatyam performance last week at Telugu University Auditorium under the aegis of Ananda Priya foundation.

Akhila, with her agile figure and wide eyes, could come out with probing expression of bhava in dance form. Her jati presentation was graceful.

In her style of presentation one could feel richness of classic Vazhvur bani, her guru Hemamalini belongs to. She had already given several performances for prestigious sabhas and also won prizes in numerous inter-school competitions.

Presenting this recital under the gaze of her guru with vocal support given by expressive vocalist Sangeethakala and high caliber Nattuvanar I.V. Renuka Prasad providing crisp nattuvangam, Akhila’s show was a treat.

Others in the ensemble were Saikumar on violin, Sridharachari on mridangam and Uma Venkaeswarlu on flute. The show turned out to be one of her best performances.

Akhila’s fomal opening with traditional invocation to the triumvirate of Goddesses Lakshmi, Saraswathi and Parvati itself mirrored what was in store for audience.

She then went for Pancharatna kirtana of Thyagaraja Sadhinchene in Arabhi that replaced traditional varnam for its lengthy lyric with space for jatis and swaras.

This being titled as ‘Hare Krishna’ there were lines in praise of MahaVishnu, Rama and Krishna and the charanam Devaki Vasudevula Neginchinatu refers to infant Krishna, and the way Vasudeva, his father, carried the child in a basket across Yamuna with a snake covering him with its hood were all impressively brought to view in Akhila’s abhinaya.

The choreography structured by Hemamalini was in the format of a varnam. The other lines in this episodic narration too were well gone through.

Later Akhila presented a padam Evvade Nenu Pavvalinchina Vela set in Sankarabharanam. This was a pure abhinaya number and all the lines were well gone through with apt interpretation of bhava and sringara rasa dominating.

Keeping in line with the Hare Krishna theme, she presented Vallabhacharya’s ‘Madhurashtakam’ that praises the charm of Krishna, his beautiful form, his love and his pranks with Gopikas. A brisk tillana in Kedaram provided fitting finale.

The programme ended with ‘Hare Krishna’ chant.



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Printable version | Mar 6, 2021 2:32:25 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/features/friday-review/dance/of-bhakti-and-bhava/article6195940.ece

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