Chakra Announcements

Dancing to Krishna's Melodies

by Vatsala Vedantam

Posted August 17, 2007


This year's Sri Krishna Shringar - the annual dance festival in Iskcon will be flagged off by a delightful solo repertoire by Nrithya Choodamani Priyadarshini Govind who will depict the Vatsalya Bhaava, the Shringaara Bhaava and the Bhakthi Bhaava in Krishna Avatara.

Sri Krishna Shringar - the annual dance festival in Iskcon will present five different schools of dance this year to celebrate Krishna in all his manifestations. In a week long series of devotional ballets, Bangalore audiences will be treated to a rare assembly of renowned artists from across the country.


This year's festival will be flagged off by a delightful solo repertoire by the popular Bharathanatyam artist, Nrithya Choodamani Priyadarshini Govind who will depict the Vatsalya Bhaava, the Shringaara Bhaava and the Bhakthi Bhaava in Krishna Avatara in her own inimitable style.

Using popular lyrics from Purandharadasa, Swati Tirunal and Oothukadu Venkatasubba Iyer, she portrays Krishna as a child with his mother Yashoda, as a divine lover with the gopis and as the incarnation of Vishnu destroying evil to save his devotees. Her presentation of the popular lyrics, 'Katrinile varum geetham', and 'Kannan varugindra neerum', bring out the best in this very elegant dancer.

The Kuchipudi Art Academy, founded by Vempati Chinna Satyam in Chennai, will follow with his two lavish masterpieces, 'Gopika Krishna' and 'Rukmini Kalyanam'.

Based on episodes taken from 'Srimad Bhagavatham' and Bhaktha Kavi Pothana's 'Bhagavatham', the two ballets portray the myriad facets of this avatar. While the first explores the adolescent life of Krishna until the moment he destroys Kamsa, the second reveals the bhakthi of the greatest of all his devotees - Rukmini.

The two dance dramas will present the stunning episodes of these stories in a spectacular display of stage craft.

Legends to perform

While the legendary Pandit Birju Maharaj and his troupe will portray the lilas of Krishna from birth through childhood to adulthood in the evocative Kathak repertoire, 'Krishna Katha', based on the songs and poetry of Bhaktha Surdas, Jayadeva and Mira Bai among others.

The festival will also present an Odissi dance repertoire by the well-known Gandharva Mahavidyalaya artists led by Madhavi Mudgal. Right from Mangalacharan through excerpts from the 'Geetha Govinda' and other various sequences like the Dashavatara upto Moksha, which is the culminating piece of any Odissi repertoire, these dancers will unravel the mysteries of the Krishna avatar, accompanied by the chanting of the Vedas.

Grand finale

Finally, in a splendid finale to the festival, the Centre for Mohini Attam will present 'Deva Gita' choreographed by Bharati Shivaji who has enriched this school of dance with her scholarship and creativity. Set against the backdrop of the Sri Krishna shrine in Guruvayur, it incorporates the best dance and musical traditions of Kerala.

Depicting the union, separation and re-union of Radha and Krishna, this dance drama features the Ashtapadis as sung in the temples of Kerala.

The devotional verses are recited in a distinct regional style known as 'sopana sangeetham' - steps leading to the deity in the sanctum sanctorum. With the Geetha Govindam, which is an integral part of temple rituals in Guruvayur where the 'kotti paada seva' is rendered, this exquisite ballet rings down the curtain on this year's festival.

The venue of the festival will be at the Iskcon Temple Auditorium, Hare Krishna Hill, Rajajinagar from August 17 to 22. For details contact Trivikrama Dasa at 93414-50310.

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