Dance couples' spectacular show

‘Kumara Sambhavam’,  a paradigmatic example of poetry by none other than Kalidasa was staged by Shridhar and Anuradha of Bengaluru on January 22 at the Vasudevacharya Bhavana. ‘Raaga Vaibhava’ presented this dance extravaganza as a part of its ninth year celebrations. The couple dancers known for their commitment to art, captured the audience with their spectacular show.

They had dramatized the Kannada translation of the poetry by  Dr M Parameshwara Bhatta. The music was scored by late Jahnavi Jayaprakash, orchestration by Anoor Anantha Krishna Sharma and lighting by Raju.

The vocal support was given by Shrishukha. The Kannada lyrics was indeed an experience by itself.

Story line

This poetry is known for the wonderful description of nature, love (Shringara), heroism and the great Himalaya mountain range.

The couple have taken utmost care in editing and adopting it to a dance drama. The known story of Shiva, Parvathi and Taarakasura samhara is ever interesting. The Rishis are troubled by Taaraka and hence surrender to Indra via Brahma who points at Kumara (Shiva’s son) as the only reliever of their problem.

But Shiva leads a life of stern austerity. Now all the Rishis and Devas wait upon Manmatha, God of Love for his co-operation in uniting Shiva and Parvathi. Rathi, Manmatha set out to create or inflame Shiva with passion for Parvathi. The magic spell of spring is seen in every nook and corner of nature.

But Shiva is unmoved. In a chance to relax his meditation, Parvathi approaches Shiva to do him homage.

It is in this lucky moment, Manmatha prepares to shoot his bewildering ‘Pushpa Baana’ but is seen by Shiva. He darts fire from his third eye which burns Manmatha to ashes.

Parvathi’s pride of her physical beauty is shattered as it was fruitless. She decides to win Shiva with her ‘Aatma Soundarya’ the inner beauty. She resolves to a life of religious self denial.

Her hard penance begin. She is visited by a Brahman youth who praises her devotion and beauty .

After knowing her purpose in performing these austerities, makes fun of Shiva, which is not tolerable by Parvathi. He tries to dissuade Parvathi by recounting the dreadful legends of Shiva.

Her anger is awakened and she defends herself and her love. The youth pulls off his disguise. He is Shiva himself. They are happily married indicating , the birth of Kumara.

The description of Kalidasa goes on. But Shridhar and Anuradha have opted for the storyline till here.

This production did bring aesthetic joy with good choreography that was steeped in classicism. The stage was brought alive in certain sequences (like Rathi and Manmathas dancing, Kaama dahana and depicting Parvathis plight during her hard penance by her sakhis)with sincere and neat performance.

Stunning performance

Anuradha was stunning as the young Parvathi. Rathi and Manmathas dance sequence was  a combination of visual and audio treat. The subtle nuances came alive in their dance giving utmost care for every small details.

Shridhar’s abhinaya during the discharge of Pushpa baana and his darting of fire with his eye was very good. The transition from scene to scene was smooth. Though handling many roles by Shridhar was appreciable , it would have been better had different persons performed Manmatha and Parvatharaja’s role.

Similarly, a female voice would have been appropriate for Parvathi’s justification. It was undoubtedly a commendable effort.

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