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Hema's celestial dance recital

A. D. RANGARAJAN

After a brilliant dance recital in Tirupati, Hema Malini promises more.



DANCING DIVAS Noted film actress Hema Malini performing along with her daughters Esha Deol (right) and Ahana Deol (left) as part of Ugadi celebrations. Photo: K.V. Poornachandra Kumar

The spiritual township that thrums to the footfalls of pilgrims played the perfect stage when cine legend Hema Malini and her troupe gave a dance performance as part of the Ugadi celebrations conducted by the Tirupati Urban Development Authority.

Indira Maidanam, an open air auditorium in the heart of the city, was packed to capacity as the ace actress along with her two daughters Esha Deol and Ahana Deol, were scheduled to perform.

Hema Malini found her metier in Odissi as her performance was marked by dignity and eloquence even in her silent gaze. Hema Malini's trademark refulgent smile and graceful look added to the grandeur of the performance. Be it the fiery portrayal of Narasimha in a Bharatanatyam performance of Narasimha Stuti or the grace-personified Sri Ram on Ramcharitmanas of Tulasidas, Hema Malini showed she still has the fire burning in her. The Ramcharitmanas was a thematic ballet covering the epic Ramayana in simple words, but exuberant in devotion. The trio shared the roles of Rama, Sita, Lakshmana, Ravana etc. between themselves.

Hema Malini's maiden solo dance number at the event was Venkatachala Nilayam... Vaikuntapura vasam, the soothing composition of Purandara Dasa on how Tirumala stands as an unmatched shrine in the universe. Another song Radhe krishna was a composition of Chaitanya Mahaprabhu, a devotee of Lord Krishna, who popularised the Harinama Sankeertana (chanting the Lord's name) as a medium to attain salvation. This song was marked by agony and deep sorrow, when the Puri Jagannath temple authorities deny him entry. Esha and Ahana too performed a solo dance number each, that were equally elegant.

The show concluded with a ballet Parampara, in which all the three shared the stage again, and stood out as the highlight. The theme is about legacy, which dwelt on how a mother acts as the first guru of a child and how the Vedic tradition believes that a guru-sishya relationship exists between a parent and a child.

At the end of the concert, Hema Malini announced that she would soon be doing a ballet on Srinivasa Kalyanam, which would revolve around the mythological events pertaining to the celestial wedding of Lord Srinivasa with Goddess Padmavathi. The speciality of this ballet is that the choreography is based on how the saint-poet Tallapaka Annamacharya narrated the wedding of the divine couple in his compositions. She also promised to give the maiden performance of the ballet in Tirupati.

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