Dancer Rajika's `Sutradhari Natyam' and `Flamenco Natyam' were fascinating for their uniqueness.
DISCERNING THROUGH the body movements has been the area of study of noted Bharatnatyam and Odissi dancer, Rajika Puri, a masters degree holder in the Anthropology of Human Movements.She has also been active on the western stage. No wonder, that she has come up with a form of story telling through the medium of dance which she calls "Sutradhari Natyam". The myths and Sanskrit poetry are retold through Rajika's songs, gestures, dances and interpretations. Recently she gave a solo performance of the unique dance and "Flamenco natyam," a mosaic of flamenco music and Bharatnatyam. In 'Sutradhari Natyam,' the story she chose to narrate about Sati and her wedlock with Lord Shiva despite parental opposition. Rajika came up with a fluent English text and complemented it with hand gestures, footwork, chants and vigorous movements. The second item was a collage of verses from poet Jayadeva's 'Gita Govinda'. Rajika's Odissi movements and "mudras" with Sanskrit excerpts of the masterpiece brought out a wide gamut of emotions and feelings ranging from sheer sensuousness to intense hurt and blissful love. The third item "Kalinga Nartana Thillana" was on "kaliya dalana" danced with Bharatnatya movements and gestures to raga "Gambhir Natai" in "adi tala". Rajika was accompanied by flute that filled the gap on the one hand and enhanced the presentation of the other. The effect could be more facile if Rajika sheds overt dramatic moments and goes for more singing.
The second part of the evening was devoted to Flamenco Natyam.It is the music and dance of the Andalusian gypsies, or Flamencos. The music and dance, are sometimes intensely sad, dealing with themes of death, anguish and despair often with an oriental cast to the music; then there are subjects of love, the countryside, and gaiety.
A woman's dance traditionally depends on the grace of the hands and body, rather than on footwork. The arm, hand, and foot movements closely resemble those of Indian classical dance.
Rajika has beautifully blended it with Bharatnatyam movements bringing in a festive spirit of a bullring to the performance.Both the 'Sutradhari Natyam' and 'Flamenco Natyam' were fascinating for their uniqueness, innovative body language and presentational mode.
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