Welcome to an evening of exciting dance performance by Daksha Vivek.

On behalf of From within Dance Academy and Daksha's family, we cordially welcome all of you to an evening of dance. I'm , a post-Arangetram student at From Within Academy, and I will be your MC for this evening.

Before we get started, I’d like to remind everyone of some house rules.

 

- No food or drink is allowed in the auditorium

- If you must leave the auditorium during the performance; please do so in-between items

- If you have young children, please sit towards the aisle. Kindly leave the auditorium if they get restless and start crying so that it is not disturbing to the rest of the audience members. Kindly do not let the children roam around the theater unattended.

- Kindly maintain silence and talk softly when the show is in progress. If you talk loudly, it distrubs the artistes on stage.

 

We ask our audience to turn off their phones so they can stay present with their experience of the art that will be shared. It is touching that some may feel inspired to take their own photos and videos to share on social media. Instead, we invite you to write and speak about your experience after the performance. You are also encouraged to share official photos and videos from our social media accounts.

 

In our digital world, it is truly special that you took the time out of your life to appreciate live art. Please prepare to immerse yourself in this experience by turning your phones off now. Please do not take any photos or videos from this point forward. Thank you for your kind understanding!

Dakshais a disciple of Guru Smt. Subhashini Vijay Santhanam of the From Within Dance Academy a global dance organization with centers in the US and India. This evening of dance signifies both a beginning and a culmination of sorts for the dancer which include the endless hours of rigorous practice, varied emotions and complete immersion. All of which was done in the pursuit of excellence for this moment when she finally gets on stage – “Arangetram”. In Tamil (one of the south Indian languages) Aranga means a raised stage and “etram” means “to ascend”.
 
All items unless otherwise mentioned have been choreographed by our beloved Guru Subhashini.
 
For all the items we present today, as long as we are able identify clearly, we will mention the time period of the composition or composer life period so that we get an idea into the history and context of when the poem was written and music set. It is hoped that this will give the audience a deeper insight into the relevance of the oral tradition being passed on thru generations and the relevance of the composition in current times. While several old pieces have deep, timeless, philosophical and spiritual significance and several new pieces share values of a new social context with a unique appealing freshness.
 
We hope that the erudite and sensitive audience present today is able to appreciate it all thru our presentation today.

Nammamma sharade - NEW

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Chaturashram Alarippu

Raga: Ragamalika

Tala: Chaturashra Ekam

Composer: Traditional

Choreographer: Guru Kittappa Pillai

This next item, Alarippu, is a traditional warm up piece in which the dancer does simple pure dance movements - proceeding from the eyes, neck, shoulders, arms and head to the entire body. The word “Alar” means “to bloom” and the movements in this piece represent a bud blossoming into a flower. Today’s Alaarippu will be performed to a count of 4 beats

Saveri Jathiswaram

Raga: Saveri

Tala: Misrachapu

Composer: Traditional

Choreographer: Kalakshetra

A "Jathiswaram" is a pure dance presentation, devoid of any abhinaya (emotions), in which, intricate sequences are fused with repetitive musical notes. The dance deals with the execution of adavus (basic steps) and mudras (hand gestures), combined in definite groups. Jathis (rhythmic pieces danced to narrated syllables) are executed combining swara passages (musical scores) in a particular raga and tala.

Godha Kauthuvam

Raga: Bhoopalam

Tala: Adi

Composer: Smt. Neela Ramanuja and Dr. Ramanuja, 2008

Choreographer: M Subhashini Vijay Santhanam

Kauthuvam is an item where a poem is first recited and then sung. It is typically performed as one of the opening items and is the first item where abhinaya or expressive dance is first introduced in the performance. In the piece presented today, the poem is in praise of the female devotee of Lord Krishna – Sri Andal (also known as Godha or Kodhai or Nachiyaar). Lord Krishna is also referred to as Ranganatha,



Godha is described as the daughter of the earth who was found near the tusli plant by the priest Vishnuchittar. She is described as the one who gives both material and spiritual bliss and the one who loves Lord Ranganatha.



When Godha strung together the flower garland for the Lord, she tried it on first. When her father Vishnuchittar goes on to offer it, he finds a hair in it. He is angry and questions Godha. The Lord himself is said to have given vision to Vishnuchittar to explain Godha was Goddess Lakshmi’s incarnate and that the Lord liked the garland just the way it was. The verse ends by saying that the deity of Sri Andal is often found near the Lord of Medicines – Dhanvi in the temples.



In the month of Dhanur when all the Gopis are engaged in worshipping Krishna, Sri Andal also does the same. She sees the vision of the Lord arriving with a 1000 elephants and taking her to be his bride. She also dreams of making an offering of a 1000 vessels filled with milk to him.



Sri Andal is the sister of Shri Ramanujacharya. She takes pity on the devotees who are eager to see Lord Krishna. On the birthday of Lord Krishna, she promises to deliver all the devotees of the Lord. Anyone who reads or hears this poem will be blessed by Shri Andal.



She is present along with Lord Krishna at all the 108 divya deshams or holy shrines of worship.

Muralinigoni (Bahudari Varnam)

Raga: Bahudari

Tala: Adi

Composer: Traditional

Choreographer: M Subhashini Vijay Santhanam

The Varnam is the centerpiece of any Bharatanatyam recital. This particular varnam is about Lord Krishna and describes in detail the beautiful episode of his dance on the hood of the snake Kaliya. Krishna was a young boy in Gokul where this Varnam is set.

Sindhooja will demonstrate the hands now so you can follow along better. Krishna is the supreme flute player and plays ever so sweetly on it. When he does so, he captivates the hearts of all people. He slayed the demon Mura and became the darling of all the village folk and gave them a lot of happiness. When Krishna plays melodiously, the young Gopi is so mesmerised that she even messes up her make up.

On the banks of the River Kalindi, Krishna discovers that the snake Kaliya is emitting poison and causing a lot of harm to the animals and villagers. He designs a game of ball with his friends and on purpose throws the ball into the river. He then proceeds to jump into the river much against the fearful warnings of his friends to retrieve the ball. Disturbed, snake Kaliya engages in a fierce duel with Krishna. Krishna quells the mighty snakes ego and dances on its hood. He then forgives the snake and tells him to live in the ocean. The devotee prays for the same compassion.

As Krishna dances on Kaliya’s head, there is a sweet sound from his gold ankle bells.

The devotee poet exclaims that she is delighted and blessed to have be able to behold the beautiful ras dance of the Gopas and Gopis with Krishna

Seeing the beautiful form of Krishna the young girls are love struck and want to be with him.

Oh Krishna, you rushed to save Gajendra on your Gaurda vahana when his foot was caught by the crocodile and showered upon him your unending grace.

You also saved Draupadi’s honor by giving her an endless saree in the court as she was in danger of being disrobed and also held up the govardhana hill to protect the people from the torrential rains that Lord Indra sent.

In my mind’s eye, I beheld your beautiful form as you danced with the Gopis and gopas and also feel blessed to have beheld your leelas and graces as they unfolded to the devotees.

Kali Viruttam

Raga: Hindolam

Tala: null

Composer: Traditional

Choreographer: M Subhashini Vijay Santhanam

The form of Goddess Kali is described as the terrible one who helps good win over evil. She is described as the fearful one with weapons, wearing a garland of skulls, and with her red tongue lolling out.

This story describes the reason why Goddess Kali is always depicted with her tongue sticking out. The demon Raktabeeja obtained a boon from Lord Brahma that when in battle, if a drop of his blood fell on the ground, there would arise a 1000 Raktabeejas stronger than the one that bled. Goddess Kali fought a hard battle with the demon and finally figured out that she had to drink the blood of this demon before it fell to the ground. So she extended her tongue and caught all the drops of blood and thus defeated the demon and saved her devotees. After she ingested the demon's blood, Kali performed her dance of victory. But as she danced her victory dance she trampled everything under her feet. The whole world started to tremble. At first, Lord Shiva was happy at her victory but got worried when even he started to fall. He called out to Kali to stop but as she was in a trance, she could not hear him. He fell at her feet. Kali stepped on him and came back to her senses. She realized
it was her consort Lord Shiva.

Villinai otha Puruvam - Kavadi Chindu - NEW

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Meera Bhajan - Jo Tum Todo Piya

Raga: Sindubhairavi

Tala: Eka

Composer: Meerabhai 1498 to 1546

Choreographer: M Subhashini Vijay Santhanam

Jo Tum Todo Piya is a beautiful bhajan or devotional song sung by Meerabhai in praise of Lord Krishna.

Meera says – My beloved, even if you let me go, I will not let you go. .

If I am separated from you, who would I be with?

If you are a tree, I would be your leaf.

If you are a lake, I would be a fish in it.

If you are a hill, I would be the cow that grazes on it.

If you are the moon, I would be the Chakora bird who stares at the full moon without any distraction.

If you are a bead, I would be the thread that strings you, and if you are gold, I would be your luster .

You are my Lord who lives in Vrajabhumi and I am your servant.

Garudadhwani Thillana

Raga: Garudadhwani

Tala: Adi

Composer: Vid Balamurali Krishna (1930-2016)

Choreographer: M Subhashini Vijay Santhanam

This is a fast and lively dance, which traditionally concludes a Bharatanatyam recital. The song is in praise of a Lord Shiva the Lord of Dance, The Damaru or his small drum moves as he dances and makes the sounds from which the syllables of our languages have been formed. Lord Krishna watches with joy also plays melodious music on his flute to accompany the drum and dance. The devotee poet worships the lord and praises him as Swayambho or one who is not born but ever present.

Special item -Porambokku or some thing else tbd - NEW

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