Swift and flawless acts on stage

Shubha Dhananjay, a kathak and bharatanatyam dancer, who performed in the City recently as part of the ‘Horizon Series’ gave up studying medicine just to plunge into dance full time.

Kathak performance in progress.

Shubha and her students performed to a full house at Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan, in a programme, in collaboration with the Indian Council for Cultural Relations (ICCR).
The 90-minute performance struck a perfect balance between kathak and bharatanatyam.

Talking about why she chose to mix kathak and bharatanatyam, Shubha says, “I began learning and performing bharatanatyam but slowly shifted to kathak because I wanted to give more importance to popularising the dance form. And my passion lies there.”

The evening had Shubha perform a few pieces of kathak, including Prabhath Vandana, Tarana and the Jugalbandi of Thillana-Tarana with her disciples. Her disciples — Maya Dhananjay, Anusha Raman, Prathima, Sneha, Anuradha and Souvik Ghosal too performed a couple of kathak pieces.

However, the highlights were the performances titled, Perini Nrithya and Shiva Sthuthi, presented by Mudra Dhananjay. In Perini Nrithya, Mudra did well in balancing her act on an inverted mud pot which is a traditional item of Tanjore style of bharatanatyam and in Shiva Sthuthi, she performed some energetic movements of Lord Shiva and interspersed it with graceful karanas which was well-received by the audience.

The second half of the programme had bharatanatyam performance by Lakshana Suresh, Sunayana, Shruthi Iyer, Rakshitha, Sowmyashree and Preksha who together presented
Shiva Padam and Mahadeva Shiva Shambho.

The piece which was choreographed by Maya Dhananjay was flawless and swift. The dancers did well to convey the meaning of the piece. The evening drew to an end with a jugalbandi of kathak and bharatanatyam in a piece titled, Thillana-Tarana. The piece was about Tipu Sultan and his valour.

Those in the audience were more than happy to see kathak and bharatanatyam being performed on one stage.

Radha Rao, a dancer, says, “It’s not easy to mix two different dance styles. It takes a lot of dedication and commitment to perform both dance styles together.” Ananth Subramaniam, another member of the audience, says, “We hardly get to see kathak recitals in the City. The performances were not only entertaining but enlightening as well.”
  

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