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Arattarangetram Eighth Episode – Part III

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Clockwise: Swamimalai Rajarathnam Pillai with Lalgudi Jayaraman; with T. Balasaraswati; Smt. Jayakamala Pandian (Images reproduced with permission)

Special Guest: Smt. Jayakamala Pandian, Artistic Director of Rajarathnalaya Arts Foundation, Bengaluru

0:00 – Devil’s advocate “How to make current kutcheri padati of Bharatanatyam accessible for non-dancer audiences?”

Topics touched:

  • cinema influences in classical dance
  • folk dances
  • changes in format
  • do such changes dilute the classical art form?
  • classical dancers in cinema
  • how is the same song choreographed for cinema and for a stage?
  • Swamimalai Rajarathnam Pillai and cinema

23:42 – Rapid Fire round

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Arattarangetram Eighth Episode – Part I

Smt. Jayakamala Pandian

Hi Friends,

Enjoy the eighth episode of Arattarangetram here.

Special Guest: Smt. Jayakamala Pandian, Artistic Director of Rajarathnalaya Arts Foundation, Bengaluru

0:00 – Subha introducing the special guest Smt. Jayakamala Pandian

2:55 – Madhana’s question – “How is the dance scene in Bengaluru? How different  is it from Chennai?”

10:22 – Her favorite bangalore dancers

10:50 – Does Bengaluru has as sabha culture like Chennai?

11:52  – How do Bengaluru audiences perceive classical dance?

Madhana’s Segment

14:42 – Video of  “SKR 80 function held in Chennai, 2012” Link to video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B10xj-1yCnY

Jayakamala Pandian recounting the experiences of organizing the event in honour of her father, Swamimalai K. Rajarathnam Pillai’s 80th birthday celebrations.

22:23 – Unique teaching method of Bharatanatyam by SKR to his students

25:30 – Vazhuvoor nritta and its uniqueness: How is grace incoporated in the style? Explaining Ramiah Pillai’s and SKR’s teaching vazhuvoor bani.

38:00 – Collaboration between Bharatanatyam artists – an established norm.

Watch out for Part II and Part III of the seventh episode with Smt. Jayakamala Pandian in the next post.

Arattarangetram Seventh Episode – Part II and Part III

Priya Murle
Image Courtesy: The Hindu

Hi Friends,

Enjoy the seventh episode of Arattarangetram here. In this post you will see the dance history and Devil’s advocate segment.

0:00 – Part II and Part III

0:15 – Raghu’s question to Priya Murle “Can you elaborate on your M.Phil dissertation on the topic of Sadharaikarana and realization of Brahman”

8:00 – Dance is the fifth veda and is divine

12:50 – Dr. Godavarish Mishra – Her guide for M.Phil dissertation

Raghu’s segment

13:35 – “Aharya trends in Sadir”

40:19 – Sudharani Raghupathy’s doordarshan series about Aharya

42:22 – Raj’s question “What was your experiences with Therukoothu? How did it influence your dancing?”

49:00 – Aharya of therukoothu

References:

•Nautch girls, Hyderabad; a photo by Hooper and Western, 1860′s
•A Nautch Girl [from Ceylon], from Customs of the World, ed. by Walter Hutchinson, London, 1931
•Gentoo dancing girls from Madras, displaying jewellery,” a photo by Nicholas and Curths, 1870
•“Dancing girls of Pondicherry,”1836-45
•Coolie life in India–an operatic performance,” from The Graphic, 1878

•Bharatanatyam – Sunil Kothari 1979
•Women of Pride – Lakshmi Vishwanathan
•Balasaraswati : Her art and life – Douglas Knight
•Dance Dialects of India – Ragini Devi
•Nityasumangali – Saskia C Kersenboon

52:00 – Comparison with Melattur Bhagavatha Mela

55:00 – about Amba Shikandi

Devil’s advocate

57:27 – “Economics of a professional dancer. How does a dancer put up a performance financially? How practically is it viable?”

Topics touched

  • Teaching and Workshop as a source of income
  • Professionalism
  • Orchestra asks Money
  • Rehearsal
  • Season is mad, as everybody is tired
  • Government intervention with December season
  • Recognition of artists in public
  • lack of arts management
  • Stamp of approval from West
  • Lack of awareness of existing grants by Government of India
  • pressure on artists
  • academic pressures on students
  • are cities culturally aware?
  • find remedial measures
  • artists as methods of change

1:03:44 – recounting an anecdote about Sudhrai Raghupathy and Padma Subrahmanyam

1:30:30 – Rapid Fire round with Priya Murle by Subha

1:38:00 – Parting thoughts

Arattarangetram Sixth Episode Part III – Devil’s advocate

0:00 – Devil’s Advocate – “Do you have to believe in God to come across as a bharatanatyam dancer?”

Talking points

  • What is Bhakti?
  • Devotion towards God and devotion towards artform
  • Is belief irrelevant?
  • Spirituality and Religiousity
  • Is it a Journey?
  • Mythology: Just an interesting story?
  • Experience in life and dance
  • What can be a per-requisite?
  • How does an atheist see Bharatanatyam?
  • If one does not believe in God, are you being dishonest on stage that makes an audience believe in the character?

37:55 – Answer to Episode Part II question “Which famous dancer was born in 1936?”

Congratulations to Lavanya Rajagopalan for giving the right answer!!!

39:44 – Final wrap with “Life of Pi”

Arattarangetram Sixth Episode – Part I and II

Welcome to the sixth episode of Arattarangetram. We did not have a guest for the first two sections of this episode.

0:01 – Introduction by Raj

Madhana’s segment – Youtubeaanubhava

0:16 – Discussing about the video clip “Shobana Live 2” by Shobana aka Shobana Chandrakumar
(http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jXbm7hhxPYo) Bhairavi Varnam “Mohamana” (Video Courtesy: tripmonk0)

Discussion on her choreography

07:45 – Should we show smile or bhavam while doing nritta sections?

09:36 – Persona or Technique? What comes across on stage?

11:45 – Sanchari part of the video (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jXbm7hhxPYo) “Bhoga Tyagesa”

15:41 – Difference in execution of the sanchari by Shobana and the previously discussed Balasaraswati’s video (http://youtu.be/fmV2OXSNjZk?t=18m24s).

16:43 – Mridangist (Nellai Kannan) role in the sanchari

19:48 – Wrapping up Madhana’s segment

21:34 – Lokadharmi versus Natyadharmi

Raghu’s segment Dance history

25:31 – The Year 1936 – Why it is a significant year in Bharatanatyam?

26:55 – Blooper

27:30 – Actual start of the Dance History presentation (Image Courtesy: Dance history column @ http://www.narthaki.com; http://www.cinemanrityagharana.blogspot.com; Google Images)

38:30 – Previous episode (fifth)’s question to the viewers “What is the crown of Nataraja made of?“ and its answer

References: 

http://tamilartsacademy.com/books/siva%20bhakti/chapter11.html

http://tamilartsacademy.com/journals/volume1/articles/festival_of_dance.html

41:36 – Current episode’s question to viewers “Which famous dancer was born in 1936?

Watch out for the Part III of the sixth episode!!! Send us your answers by commenting in this blog/video or in our facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/groups/399141770149481/)

Arattarangetram Fourth Episode

Hi Friends,

Enjoy the fourth episode of Arattarangetram here.  At the outset, apologies for the echo that you hear while viewing the video. We will definitely troubleshoot this in the next episode.

Special Guest: Sangeetha Shyam – Bharatanatyam and the Worldwide Web blogger

(Link to the blog: http://sangeethas.wordpress.com/)

Sangeetha Shyam

Introduction:

00:18 – New member of Arattarangetram, Raj’s introduction

00:42 – Subha introduces the Special Guest for the episode, Sangeetha Shyam

02:31 – Madhana’s question to Sangeetha about the Bharatanatyam and worldwide web blog (http://sangeethas.wordpress.com/)

04:24 – Subha’s question to Sangeetha about her experience of maintaining the blog and her related web based activities. (http://onlinebharathanatyamacademy.wordpress.com/)

Madhana’s Segment

07:53 – Discussion about “Bala” 1976 by Satyajit Ray, where Bala demonstrating the padam “Unnai Thoodu Anupinen” in Ragam Saveri

followed by discussion about “musicality and dance”

18:24 – An excerpt from the Mohamana Varnam from the same documentary, where Bala is shown performing to the “Bhoga Tyagesa” and discussion about the line Bhoga Tyagesa.

followed by discussion about Balasaraswati.

Acknowledgement : The video shown was uploaded by another blogger Minai, who maintains the blog “Cinema Nritya Gharana“. 

Link to the full documentary “Bala” 1976 by Satyajit Ray

Raghu’s Segment

31:12 – Raghu’s question to Sangeetha about her experience of learning under Padmashri. Chitra Visweswaran

followed by being a teacher from a student

42:14 – Video excerpt showing the Devadasis doing alarippu who were in the service of the Maharaja Sayajirao Gaekwad III of Baroda in 1930.

Link to the full video: http://www.britishpathe.com/video/maharanee-of-baroda/query/maharanee from timestamp 07:10

More info about the video from Minai’s blog:

http://cinemanrityagharana.blogspot.in/2012/07/rare-video-clips-of-devadasis-uday.html

http://cinemanrityagharana.blogspot.com/2012/09/the-devadasi-video-mystery-solved.html

References:

1:00:19 – Subha’s question to Sangeetha about judging a performance

Subha and Raj’s Segment

1:02:55  –  Devil’s advocate topic “Ideal/Best diet for a dancer and should dancers watch their weight”

Topics touched upon:

  • glycemic index
  • BMI
  • Rice
  • thrifty gene hypothesis
  • south indian diet
  • fitness – resistance exercises
  • ideal body type for dance
  • criticisms towards dancers being overweight
  • mental stress on dancers about watching weight

1:27:25 – Rapid Fire round to Sangeetha by Subha

Send us your comments and views

Arattarangetram Third Episode

Friends, Apologies for the delayed posting of the third episode. Due to some technical glitches the video could not be published immediately after the shoot.

Special Guest: Dr. Joyce Paul Poursabahian

Youtube link of her dance: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E6XSuWR0-AE

Introduction:

00:22 – Subha introducing the guest Dr. Joyce Paul Poursabahian

01:28 –  Madhana’s question to Joyce akka about her PhD in Anthropology of Performance studies.

Madhana’s Segment

11:41 – Reviewing the Trikala jathi from the documentary “Sanchari”, based on Leela Samson.

15:30 – Joyce akka’s experience with her guru Leela Samson.

21:58 – A jathi from the varnam “Roopamu Joochi”in Thodi Ragam, followed by the sahitya part

23:17 – Leela akka’s abhinaya and related discussion about Abhinaya

27:14 – Challenges of teaching Abhinaya

Raghu’s Segment

34:49 – Dance notations in 4th century

References

•Early Tamil Epigraphy: From the Earliest times to the Sixth Century AD. By Iravatham Mahadevan, 2003, Harvard Oriental Series Volume 62, Harvard University Press.

•http://www.hindu.com/lr/2003/08/03/images/2003080300280403.jpg

•http://sangeethas.wordpress.com/2012/05/05/inscriptional-evidences-related-to-dance-and-male-dancers-in-tamilnadu/

•http://3.bp.blogspot.com/_-07hPytYBXc/TKHfM9GkYKI/AAAAAAAAAew/7HcU4ps2HHQ/s1600/erode.jpg

•http://www.hindu.com/mp/2005/10/08/images/2005100801370301.jpg

Subha’s Segment

42:29 – Rapid fire round

47:21 – Devil’s Advocate: Do we need an Arangetram? What does it stand as of today?

Topics touched upon:

  • Joyce akka’s own arangetram experience
  • Money involved (Arangetram fees vs tuitions for regular class)
  • Solo performance as a challenge
  • Pressure from others and within
  • Emotional aspect of doing/completing an arangetram

Arattarangetram Second Episode

Second Episode of Arattarangetram:

This episode is dedicated to Late Padmabhushan Guru Dr. Vempati Chinna Satyam

Special Guest: Kishore Mosalikanti

Introduction:

00:15 – Subha introducing the guest artist
Madhana’s segment:

00:58  – Kishore Mosalikanti sharing his experience about his guru.

06:30  – Discussing the Kuchipudi dance drama “Krishna Parijatham” by Uma Murali Krishna and Group. This was choreographed by Padmabhushan Guru Dr. Vempati Chinna Satyam

Link to the video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rt8zgCY2V_U

09:53 – Discussing the Tarangam in Kuchipudi

14:25 – Discussing the Narada and Krishna conversation in the dance drama “Krishna Parijatham”

20:23 – Discussing Bhama Pravesha Daruvu from “Krishna Parijatham”,

followed by more discussions on Kuchipudi.

Raghu’s segment:

26:20 – Pallava sculptures related to dance.

First sculpture depicting Nataraja – Seeyamangalam

Kuncita Karana of Shiva – Kailasanathar temple, Kanchipuram

Court Dancer – Vaikunta Perumal Temple, Kanchipuram

References:

followed by

36:55 – Discussion on nattuvangam in Kuchipudi, Bharatanatyam and Mohiniattam

Subha’s segment:

41:26 – Recording practices of live performances by audiences.

Clip shown: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Fm7A6_qHLOc

Some questions asked:

  • Can we control the audience completely?
  • Is there IP rights for Indian traditional music and dance performances?
  • Archiving choreography vs. piracy of choreography
  • What about Ethical values of requesting a copy of the music/choreography/video?