Friday Review

Many hues of artistry

Prathibha Sharma's Sattriya performance

Prathibha Sharma's Sattriya performance

Kalabharathi National Music and Dance Fest, which showcased young, promising dancers, proved to be a crowd puller. The first day opened with a Bharatanatyam recital by Pavitra Krishna Bhatt who presented an Alarippu in Gambheera Natta. He followed it up with a neatly choreographed varnam in Reethigowla. The cleverly executed arudis and adavus were marked with vigour and dexterity. The dancer dramatically portrayed the episodes in the life of Krishna, especially those of the killing of Poothana and his lifting of Govardhana. However, the varnam was truncated at the expense of eliminating the ettugada swaras. Pavitra later presented a bhava piece ‘Vazhi Maraithirikkuthe’ from Gopalakrishna Bharathi’s ‘Nandanar Charitham’ in which Nandanar laments over his plight because he is unable to see Lord Shiva’s idol in Chidambaram as the huge idol of Nandi blocks his view.

‘Saali naach’ was Prathibha Sharma’s main piece in her presentation of Sattriya. The folk elements and flavour of the music added charm to this dance from Assam.

Geeta Padmakumar was the only dancer in the festival who performed with live musicians and that made a world of difference. After ‘Ananda narathana Ganapathi’, she depicted the goddess and her form in ‘Kanchadalayatakshi’. She portrayed the rasa of ‘Vatsalya’ in two pieces — ‘Bhavayami Gopalabalam’ and ‘Jo jo achuthananda’.

Aditi Bhagwat’s Kathak recital was the performance that appealed to the audience the most. Apart from mastery over the idiom of her dance, it was her verve in interacting and involving the audience in the artistic experience that won her accolades. She presented ‘Uthaan’ in Drut lay in three variations. Strong footwork and rhythmic cadence were the hallmarks of the performance. Aditi, also an actor in Marathi movies, proved her mettle in abhinaya in a thumri ‘Jamuna mein kaise jaaon mein saiyan’. The tatkar bols and Aditi’s precision in movements in a ‘Tarana’ made it a visual treat.

On the third day, singer Sithara took the audience on a musical journey of film music and ghazals, exploring the sentiments of love, longing and happiness. More than her own interpretation of the popular numbers, she presented the songs as a tribute to the masters. Hence she had pieces from Abida Parveen, Ghulam Ali (‘Awargi’), Pankaj Udhas (‘Deewaron se’) and Baburaj hits such as ‘Thaliritta Kinakkal’ and ‘Asthamana Kadalin’.

An Odissi group choreography on the same day by Nrityanthar saw a presentation of ‘Panchabhoothas’. However it lacked professionalism in the choreography. ‘Adharam Madhuram’ portrayed the pranks of Krishna which left much to be desired in expression and grace.

The event was organised by Kalabharathi, in association with Changampuzha Samskarika Kendram.


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Printable version | May 26, 2022 4:53:21 am | https://www.thehindu.com/features/friday-review/kalabharati-national-music-and-dance-fest-review/article6614493.ece