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Blending Swaras and Abhinaya

A versatile teacher-dancer, Anitha Guha has churned out dance productions in shabdam formats and is the youngest guru to receive Acharya Choodamani title

Published: 16th December 2014 06:00 AM  |   Last Updated: 16th December 2014 06:00 AM   |  A+A-

Anitha-Guha

CHENNAI: Renowned dancer-teacher Anitha Guha, was the youngest guru to receive ‘Acharya Choodamani’ title from Krishna Gana Sabha. Anitha, a recipient of many accolades, including the Vidya Tapasvi Award, was under the tutelage of her mother Karthiyayini Natesan and Govindaraja Pillai. Not many know that she’s an adept singer as well. Anitha founded Bharathanjali Trust in 1989, which has been imparting training to students, to bring out the best in them on a par with professionals.

Setting standards of her school, some of her students including Ishwarya Narayanaswamy, Mehta Hari, Satvika Shanker and Pavithra, have blossomed into soloists and are performing in India and abroad, winning awards, titles and scholarships, etc.

She has the distinction of helping students shape their creative skills and moulding them into accomplished Bharatanatyam artistes.

To her, dance is not a mere art, but an effective instrument to take the audience through a blissful experience.

 “I founded Bharathanjali Trust as my humble contribution to this great art of dance, and every year on the eve of Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba’s birth anniversary celebrations, we conduct a programme with the motto of ‘lighting the lamp of love in all’,” she says. Anitha is known for her dance productions like Tiruppavai and mixed style of choreography.

Her recent group presentation in Vana Virata Vijayam highlighted the dialogue between Bheema and Hanuman in shabdham format, making the concept more interesting. She uses direct speech between the characters, which is quite unusual in shabdham format. Set in two talas, the conversation-based presentation has been tuned in colourful ragas like Khambodi, Saveri, Madhyamavathi (traditionally used in shabdam) and Darbar. Undoubtedly, she’s an effective bridge between the conventional mode of dance presentation and the present day one.

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