Breathing new life into stories

Honest Depiction

Chowdaiah Memorial Hall was packed to its last seat as people excitedly waited for bharatanatyam dancers, Vani Ganapathy and Satyanarayana Raju, to begin their well-publicised dance-drama Dwaaram. 

The dance-drama depicted how life is a series of doorways which is always open. And people can welcome life if they take things in their hands. 

The concept was the brainchild of Vani Ganapathy and Usha RK. The two seasoned dancers brought to the stage not only their experience but also grace and a command over the rhythms. Split into five parts, the narrative breathed fresh air into an overdone theme.

 “They put new life into what has been done before,” said Kiran, a classical dance enthusiast. “The concept is nice and unique,” said Jayanthi M Eshwarputhi, a bharatanatyam and kathak dancer. 

Rajadwaaram was a story from the Mahabharata.Vani enacted out how Yudhishthira lost all his wealth, his brothers, himself and Draupadi in a game of dice against his uncle Shakuni. 

As a lustful Dushasana unwrapped Draupadi’s sari, she swore to keep her hair untied until she drenched it with his blood. 

Veeradwaaram was the tale of Kanthirava Narasaraja I of the Wodeyar dynasty who was popularly called Ranadheera Kanteerava. Closer home, it narrated the King’s accomplishments and valour. He was known to have fought off an assassination attempt and also helped the State by building canals.

This piece was performed by Satyanarayana. The third narrative, Gruhadwaaram, was of two lovers, an angry young woman and a man trying to win her back. 

Vani and Satyanarayana danced back and forth, tickling the audience with their fresh romance. After much cajoling, Satyanarayana won the damsel over. The fourth story was of devotion to the Lord. 

Devadwaaram told the tale of Andal, her father Vishnuchitta and how she was born to be with Lord Vishnu. There was another devotee who wanted to see Krishna before he died and got his wish.
The two dancers depicted what devotion is. Athmadwaaram was the finale that showed the transition of a person from the stage of arishadvargas, that is kama (lust), krodha (anger), lobha (greed), moha (temptation), mada (pride) and matsarya (envy), to achieving moksha (salvation). 

The event was a grand venture, with an elaborate set-up, costumes and lighting. Without the amazing musicians, the night would have failed. Satyanarayana said, “I was originally supposed to choreograph for Vani but she asked me to dance as well. It’s been good experience. 
Our movements agree with each other.”  The auditorium thundered with applause after the event. “Sometimes, bharatanatyam performances can get jaded but this held me; it was fantastic! They complimented each other very well,” said Kiran. But there were others like Jayanthi who said, “It was quite good but some parts were unnecessary.”

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