Designing classics!

Designing classics!
Highlights

Mixing of colours and using fabric that gives comfort for an artiste, who perform classical dance, and theatres, Ganesh Nallari has changed the whole concept of being elaborate He believes that simplicity is something that never loses its charm With the motto of bringing every art form, the designer speaks about his work and how he enjoys doing his work

Mixing of colours and using fabric that gives comfort for an artiste, who perform classical dance, and theatres, Ganesh Nallari has changed the whole concept of being elaborate. He believes that simplicity is something that never loses its charm. With the motto of bringing every art form, the designer speaks about his work and how he enjoys doing his work.

The Designer
Apart from creating designs for weddings I also work on different creative projects. My most recent work is Alekhya Punjala’s ‘Mandodari’, in that production I have not only designed costumes, but I also did set design, visual design, invitation cards and every aesthetic aspect of presenting the dance drama. I also have designed costumes for films and television, however, I enjoy designing for the stage the most.

Journey as a designer for classical dance
I have learned Kuchupudi and after finishing my dentistry, I enrolled in NIFT and there I started learning Bharatanatyam. At that time, in 2006, my sister (Ananda Shankar Jayant) was coming up with a production titled ‘Dancing Tales: Panchatantra’, and I was asked to design the costumes for the production. For this production, the big challenge was ‘quick change’ of costumes as the production had short stories and the primary characters were animals. As they were performing a classical dance I had to work on the fabric and had to make sure that it was comfortable. However, I could not witness the show as I went to Milan to do my Masters. Just before doing ‘Panchatantra’ I did an important production ‘Othadai’, which is one of my favourite productions. I happen to break the whole monotony of using silk fabric.

Challenges in designing classical
dance costumes
I think the biggest challenge when you are doing costumes for any production is the budgets, especially for dance and stage. You need the grandeur but yet at the same time, I believe in minimalism. I do not like to overdo, and when you think of classical dance they have a very elaborate costume and jewellery but I prefer to keep it more balance like if you are using strong colours then you don’t need to have much of jewellery, for me less is more. I believe in simplicity, for the main characters you can have a little bit elaborated stuff but for the side artists it can be something simple. Each time there is a different inspiration and there is no particular way of doing it.

Mandodari
I worked for Alekhya Punjala for ‘Rudrama’, where I worked on the costumes. Now I did the complete production, I have also done plays and directed them. In ‘Mandodari’ I have done costumes used different fabrics like Ikat etc. It was all about playing with colours. It was fun working with Alekhya. I came up with an idea where we can take the set along which are painted and light. It was an abstract representation.

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