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Dancing on the Golden Platform

Dancing on the Golden Platform
Highlights

Meenakshi Srinivasan of Chennai stole the hearts of many a dance aficionado with her dazzling performance at CCRT Amphitheatre on Saturday. Well, it was certainly worth the long trek to that corner of the city, braving the traffic, and later braving the biting cold in the open auditorium, to watch a dance that was truly worth watching.

Meenakshi Srinivasan of Chennai stole the hearts of many a dance aficionado with her dazzling performance at CCRT Amphitheatre on Saturday. Well, it was certainly worth the long trek to that corner of the city, braving the traffic, and later braving the biting cold in the open auditorium, to watch a dance that was truly worth watching.

It was a curtain raiser event for “Hema Arangam”, the cultural society that is started by a Bharatanatyam danseuse from Hyderabad, Kiranmayee Madupu. Disciple of the renowned Alarmel Valli, Meenakshi has certainly imbibed the brilliance, elegance and the essence of feminine grace of her guru. A qualified architect and an accomplished dancer, her performance sparkled while enriching the viewer’s experience.

Meenakshi Srinivasan

After an invigorating invocation “Ananda Natana Prakasam” (a Deekshitar composition in Kedaram) she took up a varnam in ragamalika where she played the pining heroine who urges her sakhi to fetch her Lord Nataraja of Chidambaram, without any further delay. In “Swamiyai Azhai Thodi Vaa”, a Dandayudhapani Pillai’s creation, she played the lovelorn nayika to finesse and the denouement was very poignantly portrayed.

Meenakshi’s performance was all the more delightful and distinctive because of two rare padams that she presented with subtle and sensitive abhinaya. “Kodi koose nayya yyo” (Saurashtra), is a Kshetrayya padam, where the situation of irony is well rendered with a tad of humour. The heroine plans a long and amorous night with her beloved, but the stupid rooster plays a spoilt sport with its untimely crowing, thus ruining the fun.

Her abhinaya was even more compelling in the second padam she took up - Patnam Subramanya Iyer’s composition in Khamas “Apudu manasu niluchunate….athivaro…ideti maata?” A young and immature nayika is reprimanded by her friend for talking to a stranger, a handsome young man, who is none other than Lord Venkateswara himself. The girl justifies her action, saying how could she not respond when the charming youth speaks of love, and steals her heart?

Meenakshi concluded with a thillana in Sindhu Bhairavi, composed by the ever popular Rajkumar Bharathi. One could perceive the unmistakable stamp of her guru in her dance, combined with her own judicious handling of perception and imagination. Though the music was recorded, Hari Prasad’s pleasing voice added immensely to the presentation. “Hema Arangam aims to be a unique platform that brings audience closer to niche performers and upcoming artists closer to discerning audiences “, says the founder. This welcoming news makes us wait for the next niche performer. Hope it will be soon.

By:Vijaya Pratap

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