BHUBANESWAR: For the art and dance connoisseurs of the city, the seven-day cultural dance fest Baisakhi Utsav is proving to be a cultural treat.
On third day of the festival on Tuesday, Odissi danseuse Illeana Citaristi regaled the audience with her dance moves. The performance was followed by Odissi vocal by Keshab Chandra Rout and Satriya dance by Anwesa Manata. In the group category, dancers of Noopur performed.
Earlier on Sunday, the Baisakhi Utsav was inaugurated by the Governor of Odisha M C Bhandare at the Jayadev Bhawan premises.
The inaugural evening started with the recreation of ‘Pahandi Bije’ scene of Lord Jagannath in Puri. In a procession, the idol of the Lord was taken to the stage while artistes from Puri Sahijata Sanskrutika Sanasada played different folk instruments. In fact, the ceremonial ‘Pahandi Bije’ is the main attraction of the dance festival.
While there was a solo recital by Odissi dancer Meera Das, Bijaya Jena gave a performance in Odissi vocal. Thereafter, Bangalore-based Praveen Kumar enthralled the audience with his Bharatnatyam recital. The group performance of the evening was by dancers of Odisha Dance Academy and the event concluded with Gotipua by boys from Guru Gangadhar Pradhan Foundation.
Being hosted for the past 32 years by the cultural outfit ‘Chinta-O-Chetana’ founded by former chief minister late Hare Krushna Mahatab, the event is being supported by the State Government and the Indian Council for Cultural Relations (ICCR).
The Governors of Nagaland, Himachal Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh are attending the festival during various evenings. This year, the festival directors decided to confer the Neelachakra Samman on Governor of Nagaland Nikhil Kumar.
Besides solo performances by ace dancers like Sujata Mohapatra, Leena Nanda, Naba Mishra, the festival features folk art forms like Sambalpuri, Chhau, Ghoomra, Ranapa and Sankha and Paala every evening.
There will be a special ‘Sugam Sangeet’ show on April 20 where eminent singers of the State will perform.