Chakra Announcements

Looking for Sponsors for My Dance Graduation

by Komala Kumari

Posted January 15, 2011

My first performance, ISKCON Detroit

I began my dance journey at a very young age under the guidance and inspiration of my sister, Anapayini Jakupko. I give all the credit to my sister for making me the dancer I am today. She has been the most incredible role model and mentor in my life, and I continue to approach her today for advice and approval. I began classes under my sister at the age of 3, and gave my first performance at the local ISKCON temple at the age of 4.

I grew up watching her sister perform Bharatanatyam, and listening to my mother sing Classical Carnatic music. Because of my family’s strong attraction to the sacred arts of south India we began visiting Bangalore frequently, and at the age of 7 I had my first dance class with Smt. Indira Kadambi, My sister's dance teacher.

Dance classes with Indira Akka, Bangalore India

I continued classes through Anapayini’s dance school, while taking occasional workshops by Indira Kadambi. Being part of Anapayini's senior dance class, I became one of the dancers in the Bhakti Kalalayam Dance troupe consisting of Anapayini Jakupko, Prtha Goldman, Sita Wolf, Jahnavi Harris, Nadia Heinz, and Kalindi Andujar. In this group, I had the good fortune of traveling on the Krishna Culture Festival Tours for five wonderful summers. On the tour I was given the opportunity to perform in most of the major cities in the United States. The Bhakti Kalalayam Dance troupe also performed throughout Canada, Mexico, Panama, and Trinidad. I plan to continue to performing with this amazing group of talented dancers, and look forward to setting out on our Poland tour next summer. We have received many words of encouragement such as the comment below:

"what can one say or describe ? Except to say that it is pure joy . We are all blessed ones to have watched this beautiful performance. You can see in the artists - the young girls - purity,peace ,pride ,happiness and they are spreading love with their tireless efforts. This is pure bhakthi in the human family."-allembrace

Bhakti Kalalayam Dance Troupe, Halifax Canada

As of the past two years, I have had the honor of dancing with my two close friends and dance mentors, Ganga Sheth, and Vrinda Devi Sheth. We formed a troupe called Tribhangi, and our purpose was to give a dynamic visual element to the beautiful, soulful music performed by the Mayapuris. Our dances are a colorful blend of Bharatanatyam, and odissi with a shade of contemporary movement. We drive to bring our audience not just entertainment, but a an experiance of spiritual upliftment at our performances. We heard commentary such as

"Really liked this lots! Very clean technique and interesting choreography- could see some elements of ballet, modern and Odissi too. Inspiring!"- Karunadd


"Great Dancing. Very Funky, nice, New."-haribhakti

Tribhangi Dancers and the Mayapuris, Joshua Tree California

In the year 2005, when I was 15, I made my first trip to Chennai and began intensive training under Indira Akka.I lived with friends Gangi and Nilacala during that time and had my first exposure to the dance scene in Chennai. Ever since, I have been visiting Chennai in between semesters at College and studying for 4 to 5 months at a time. Indira Akka has been a blessing to my life even more than I can express. She is the finest example of a teacher who really invests her energy into her student. She has taught me so much about dance that goes beyond the simple arm and leg movements. She is also an incredible performer, known for touching the hearts of her audience with her abhinaya, or facial expressions. I am very grateful for Akka, and I feel very fortunate to be one of her few students.

Dance for me doesn't end at being my passion. It is much more than that. Dance is my offering to the Divine. Dance and music brings me to an entire different realm where intentions are pure and every emotion is swelling with spiritual vibrancy. My intention during my performances is to bring the audience to that place. Together we experience this sacred offering of devotion. I feel it when my sister dances, and my dream is to evoke that same sanctity in my performances.

I have been in Chennai now for the past two months with a new ambition. I want to present my Arangetram. An Arangetram is the most important day in this dance journey. It is a new beginning. It is a tradition for a dancer, a blessing for her to present all that she has learned and share it with her family, friends and community. I have been looking forward to this performance for years, and I finally have the opportunity and guidence to do it in Chennai. Performing here is a great honor for me as it is the home for many renowned dancers who have defined Bharatanatyam to be what it is today.

From my photoshoot just the other day. We will soon be choosing a photo to print on the invitations and send to the press. Chennai India

As of the past few months, my teacher and I have been making plans, going shopping, taking pictures and dreaming up ideas for March 6th, the date of my Arangetram. I have bought my sarees for the two costumes. The orchestra has been booked, and the venue is confirmed. The camera man has been reserved and the lights and sound have been hired. Going to performances every night only inspires me to put on an amazing performance. There is one problem though. I still don't have enough funds to present this performance of a lifetime. This is my call to all of my friends far and wide. Does anyone have any experience with fundraising? I'm looking for sponsors who would like to patron this beautiful artform and help a young artist put on her debut performance in the Bharathanatyam capital of the world!

Please visit my website for the budget, progress details, or to donate. If you have any advice as to how I can make this Arangetram happen, please contact me. Please feel free to share my website with your friends

Thank you for reading, and thank you all for your support.

Your servant,
Komala Kumari

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