BANGALORE: Wednesday's dance recital at JSS Auditorium featuring Sowndarya Bhaskar from the US was delightful and impressive. She kept the audience spellbound with her fast footwork and bhaava.
Fittingly backed by her guru Roopa Shyamasundar (nattuvanga), Srivatsa (vocal), Karthik (flute), Ganeshkumar (violin) and Gurumurthy (mridanga), Sowndarya executed the traditional opening items-- Pushpanjali and Alarippu-- with ease and poise. She proved that she is a well trained and talented Bharatanatya artiste full of grace and poise, with a very promising future.
Sowndarya impressed the rasikas with both the conservative and modern elements of Bharatanatya. It was a treat to witness her rendition of Saveri jathiswara with grace and technique going hand in hand. Its jathis and swaras were expressively translated into a powerful nritta packed with refined adavus. The ragalamalika shabda with Lord Krishna's beauty as the theme brought out her abhinaya skill.
She had selected a varna which required full use of her abilities or resources. In the Todi varna Maaye Maayan sodariye set to Todi raga, addressed to Goddess Parvati, she dwelt on the line Shringara shruthi laya bhaavame and enacted each of those words in detail. Navarasas were portrayed with aplomb.
During the laya segment, she covered a wide gamut of nritta with excellent rhythmic patterns. Thus the coverage of nritta, nrithya and abhinaya parts became wholesome. Her histrionic expertise was fully on view when she artistically recapitulated a few episodes of the Ramayana on the basis of a fine krithi Janakipathe jaya kaarunya jaladhe.
Bharatha Muni's Natya Sastra is the most invaluable and important comprehensive source book containing a text of dramaturgy that India can boast of. Written between 500 BC and 300 AD by Sage Bharatha, it is the original guide, extensively covering all aspects of theatre. It deals with the fundamental facts about all aspects of our performing arts, beginning with the origin of theatre, acting, costuming, make-up, properties, dance, music, poetic composition, play construction, grammar, audiences, rituals, architecture and so on.
A dance feature with the Natya Sastra as the content drew the attention of rasikas when it was presented in last April. Credit must go to mridangist, choreographer and Bharatanatya guru B K Shyam Prakash whose wonderful concept of work of presenting the inputs of the Natya Sastra in the medium of a dance feature was actualised.
The same dance feature with some editing was presented at Keshava Samskriti Sabha, ISRO Layout, on the first day of its two-day annual festival. He needs to be commended for presenting the Natya Sastra Samgraha which enabled the audience to understand Natya Sastra in a compact form. The dance feature titled Panchama Veda (the fifth Veda, based on Bharatha's Natya Sastra) explicated all the features of Rasa, Bhava, Abhinaya, Dharmi, Vrithi et al. It was an entertaining, audio-visual and successful unfolding of the theme. It was also a skilful exposition of the work indeed. The presentation and the dancers deserve to be applauded for the manner in which they managed to unfold the theme on a small stage with useful lighting. The recorded music was well handled.
The dance feature was divided into seven scenes. The dancers Raghunandan, Ullas, Shrithi, Samhitha, Sowmya, Sukeetha, Chaitra, Soniya, Meghana, Gayatri, Divya, Amritha, Anilkumar, Nandakishore, Sangeetha among others did well. Tirumale Srinivas' music compositions highlighted the beauty of the lyrics by veteran Gamaka Vidwan M R Sathyanarayana. Seasoned dancer and teacher G S Nagesh stole the show as Bharathamuni.
Music programmes at Unnati Centre under the auspices of Sri Guruvayurappan Bhajana Sabha for the Gokulashtami celebrations have been a big draw. On Monday evening, vocalist O S Arun lived up to his reputation and with his splendid singing left an indelible mark on the minds of the lovers of music. The popular singer cleverly presented his concert by featuring traditional and classical ragas during the first half of the concert.
In the second half he obliged the audience by singing their requests and also a few of his favourite compositions. Blessed with a captivating voice and refined articulations, he won hearts down with his engrossed singing. A touch of divinity scaled up the unforgettable experience. The emotion-filled singing was endearing. It was much beyond just technically nuanced singing.
Excellently accompanied by Karraikal Venkatasubramaniam (violin), Harisundar (mridanga) and Ganapthi (tabla), Arun satisfied every kind of listener present in the hall. He left nobody disappointed. All their calls were heard by Arun. Classicism, tradition, rhythm, and mathematical calculations caught the attention of the audience. He began with a rare kriti Prabho Ganapath set to Tillang raga.
The singing of Ottakkadu Venkatasubbaiyer's Yeppadittaan yen ullam in Neelambari in a leisurely pace moved the listeners. Paramapurusha Jagadeeshwara (Vasantha) was crisp. The Arabhi pancharathna krithi Sadhinchene solidified the effect of the concert. Simhendramadhyama was dealt with in detail for Simhendravaasini.
The next part of the concert was dedicated to somewhat lighter compositions. Pandhari nivasa (Sant Namadev, Mishra Bilaval), Aaj aavo (Shyam Kalyani), Saavale Sundara roop (Sant Tukaram, Hindola), Gopi Goapala baala (Sant Soordas, Gamanashrama), Maili chaadar (Mishra Kalavathi) and others pleased the ears and touched the hearts of the rasikas. His diction, articulation of the text of the songs and the feel for the sentiments took the listeners on an enjoyable journey of music, melody and mood.