The group presentations stood out in the dance festival
Seasoned Bharatanatya dancer Ranjani Ramesh Ganeshan and her parents deserve to be commended for their untiring efforts in holding the Arudra dance festival year after year. For the ninth consecutive year, it was successfully held at Subhash Bhavan in Rajarajeshwarinagar for two days. Group presentations marked the festival. The highlight of the festival was, without doubt, the jugalbandhi of Odissi and Bharatanatya designed, devised, directed, choreographed and led by the young dancer Vani Madhav of Bangalore. The recorded music in all the four recitals was appropriate.
It was most reassuring to see how Ranjani Ramesh Ganeshan has kept up her shape and form. She led a trio performance with her sister-actress Malavika Avinash and little daughter Daksha Ramesh. Her dexterity was amazing as was evident from the double speed jathis in the nritta portions. While Malavika was extremely good in her abhinaya, Daksha did justice to the role made for her. The opening Mallari, an essentially nagaswara item, had a variety in terms of solkattus and aduvus. The Shivashtapadi "Kanakasabha sadane", a eulogy to Lord Shiva was fully explored by Ranjani and Malavika and the Shivaleelas were neatly depicted. Purandaradasa's "Entha sannavane ninna maga" was sought to focus on Daksha. And Daksha did extremely well as Bala Krishna. Malavika and Ranjani as Yashoda and Gopika became one with their characters. *****
The group Kathak by Omkar Creations led by Suma Vijay yielded mixed results. The long-drawn speech on Kathak for was a wee bit taxing on the rasika.
Explication of a Purandaradasa pada with a Sanskrit shloka and the portrayal of Dashavatara by Suma, Tushar Bhat and V. Bharathi was a good idea and the execution was just simple. "Hariharaardha moorthy" was a welcome item.
The leelas and traits of Shiva and Vishnu were enunciated on the basis of the ascending notes sa, ri, ga, ma, pa, da, ni of the raga. Joined by Nagaraj, the above trio went through the phases of the portrayal with ease. Of course, Nagraj's approach seemed a bit exaggerated.
M. SURYA PRASAD
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