Combines skill and grace
EVERY ASPECT in the Bharatanatyam recital of P. Praveen Kumar, disciple of Narmada (Bangalore) and Prof. C. V. Chandrasekhar, Chennai, reflected a deep sense of respect, sincerity and devotion. This young dancer has considerable skill coupled with grace and beauty in movements as well as a confident approach in the execution of technique. In spite of the fact that the style of Praveen Kumar did not possess a definite stamp of any particular Sampradaya, his presentation sailed through a smooth, pleasant artistic channel. There was a certain dignity and elegance about Praveen Kumar's performance at the Natyarangam of Narada Gana Sabha.
Praveen Kumar's selection of items for the evening included both traditional and contemporary lyrics containing different sentiments, based on male-oriented themes. ``Kola Mayil," a Varnam composition of Madurai N. Krishnan gave enough scope for Praveen to proceed on a devout search of the grace of Lord Muruga. Neat lines, firm footwork, graceful hasta delineations and a pleasant portrayal of the different narrations by the dancer, created a calm, leisurely atmosphere that is becoming a rare feature in the present dance scene. The Javali of Sarangapani, "Chittike", that followed described the anxiety of the lover who is none other than Lord Venugopala. The Javali deals with the Lord's disappointment and Praveen's version, as taught by Kalanidhi Narayanan, was a verbatim translation and there was no emphasis on the self-spoken grandeur of the Lord. One or two crisp episodic elaborations would have beautifully conveyed the sequence. Further, the composition as such lacked depth and only underlined the fact that all that is old, need not be gold. A verse from the poetic collection, "Mysore Mallige," of K. S. Narasimhaswamy, was the next number. The lyric describes the feelings of a repenting husband who proceeds on a tour leaving behind his wife, who did not share enough affection at the time of departure.
The memory of that scene brings pain to him. Beautiful content indeed, although in dance format it failed to communicate the whole weight of the agony, alternating between the man and his wife. Praveen's presentation, composed by Indira Kadambi, was again a literal translation of the words through gesticulation, depicting the lonely male character. The orchestra consisted of artistes mostly from Bangalore. The main singer strayed off sruti on several occasions.
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