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Varied performances

Ranee Kumar

Kinnera Art Theatres' Mega Nrityotsav gave opportunity for a gamut of classical dancers to present their art.



ADMIRABLE SHOW Uma's stage presence was impressive; (below centre) Parvathi's `abhinaya' and choreography were good.

The recent Mega Nrityotsav 2005 by Kinnera Art Theatres was all-enveloping, featuring as it did classical dancers drawn from various regions within the state as well as from the south (Chennai). To the credit of the organisers, it must be said that artistes of all age groups were given an opportunity to showcase their talent within the time slots allotted to each throughout the festival. And some very young child-dancers from the districts of AP were a marvel to watch going by their laya and tala adherence and stage presence. It stands more as a testimonial to the able gurus who are imparting immaculate training in traditional dance forms.

Among the seasoned artistes were Uma Muralikrishna and Parvathi Ravi Ghantasala - both from Chennai who presented a solo in Kuchipudi tradition and a musical ballet (Bharathanatyam) respectively. Uma was very expressive with her Gajavandana and Muddugaarey Yashoda... Traces of Bharatanatyam kept creeping into the dancer's stances and style, especially in the very first song.


Charming as she was in a black and gold costume, Uma had an impressive stage presence. Her body kinetics and gestures (while doing the paala jaladhi verse) were superior to her facial abhinaya, hence the concluding tillana was full of grace and swing making up for her light footwork. The recorded orchestra came as a disappointment.

Parvathi Ghantasala and pupils chose to present the story of saint-poet Annamacharya through a series of kritis of the famous composer and little dialogue in prose. This too was a recorded production, hence the initial hiccups in acoustics. The musical ballet took off with popular Annamayya numbers like Sriman Narayana, Sharanu sharanu, Sripathi Vallabha, Adigo Alladigo Srihari Vasamu... , which are strictly speaking not dance numbers by any stretch of imagination.

Despite Parvathi's admirable abhinaya and good choreography, especially the part where Annamayya gets carried away by seeing a pilgrim group on its way to Tirumala, the ballet was marred by lack of sync among the group of dancers. Parvathi's standardisation did not do the magic among her pupils who were not quick on the uptake. For most part, this abhinaya oriented ballet was handled by the efficient Parvathi, which proved to be its blessing. The backdrop of cloth symbols like Shanku-Chakra, Tirunamam and Sri paadam gave a creative edge to the theme, which was staged at Thyagaraya Gana Sabha.

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