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"Music and dance can bring minds together"

Special Correspondent

Kerala Minister commends Music Academy



MEMORABLE OCCASION: M.A. Baby, Kerala Minister for Education and Culture handing over a souvenir to Sreedhar Potarazu, CEO, VitalSpring Technologies, at the inauguration of The Music Academy's Dance Festival in Chennai on Wednesday. N. Murali, presid ent, The Music Academy, is also in the picture. — Photo: Shaju John

CHENNAI : Music and dance can contribute to bring minds together to bridge fissiparous tendencies and link the country, Kerala Education and Culture Minister M.A. Baby said here on Wednesday.

Music and dance were inseparable and more meaningful cultural interactions were the need of the hour, he said during the inauguration of The Music Academy's first-ever dance festival.

The weeklong festival is being held in commemoration of the 75th anniversary of the Academy featuring bharatanatyam. The inaugural performance was by Shobana. Commending the Academy for bringing master performers from various regions and styles together , Mr. Baby wished the "historic occasion" a "great success."

The dance festival was in commemoration of the pioneering role played by the Academy in preserving and propagating bharatanatyam, N. Murali, president of The Music Academy, said in his welcome address earlier.

It was seventy-five years ago, in the year 1931, that the Thiruvalaputhur Kalyani daughters, Rajalakshmi and Jeevarathnam, performed under the auspices of the Academy, the first time that a dance recital was performed on stage. The event was historic as it marked the beginning of the renaissance of bharatanatyam. Since then, bharatanatyam had regularly featured in the Academy's annual festivals, Mr. Murali said. He also conveyed the Academy's gratitude to U.S-based art patron, Sreedhar Potarazu, CEO, VitalSpring Technologies, the main sponsor for the festival, and Naidu Hall, the associate sponsors. Mr. Potarazu would also sponsor regular monthly or bi-monthly programmes of promising young dancers from all over the country at the Academy, Mr. Murali said. The festival marked a new era in "widening the platform" for Indian classical dance and a resurgence that took the art beyond boundaries, Mr. Potarazu said. The festival blended innovation and creativity in bringing renowned dancers from all over the country to one venue, he said and called upon the corporate sector to pay special focus in promoting fine arts, especially classical dance.

The festival will feature seventeen solo recitals and five group presentations.

Among those who will give lecture demonstrations are Padma Subrahmanyam, Anita Ratnam, Chitra Viswesvaran, V.P. Dhananjayan and Shanta Dhananjayan, Rhada, C.V. Chandrasekhar, Lakshmi Viswanathan and Vyjayantimala Bali.

Performances will be by Malavika Sarukkai, Priyadarshini Govind, Leela Samson, Rama Vaidyanathan, Srinidhi Chidambaram and Alarmel Valli.

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