Welcome to an evening of exciting dance performance by Dheesha 2022.

On behalf of From within Dance Academy and Dheesha'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!

Dheeshais 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.

New Pushpanjali and Shlokam - NEW

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Khandam Alarippu

Raga: null

Tala: Khandachapu

Composer: Traditional

Choreographer: M Subhashini Vijay Santhanam

This dance is typically an opening number. Starting with movements of the neck, eyes and shoulders, it gradually includes movements of the whole body. It is meant to represent the blossoming of a flower. Today’s allarippu is performed to a count of five beats.

Hamsadhwani Jathiswaram

Raga: Hamsadhwani

Tala: Adi

Composer: Traditional

Choreographer: M Subhashini Vijay Santhanam

A Jathiswaram is a song made of only swaras (the 7 basic notes) and jathis (complex beats or talas) to which the dancer dances. It is a pure Nrtta piece without any Abhinaya (or facial expression). It is a dance item in which the dancer displays her versatility in elaborate footwork and graceful body movements. The dancer performs several adavus (footwork, basic steps) along with 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. A Jathiswaram is composed of at least one SolluKattu (bundle of musical syllables ) and several Korvai’s. When an adavu is set to a particular Thalam (rhythm) and Kalam (tempo) it becomes a Korvai. In a Jathiswaram, several Korvai’s are strung together as beads, concluding in a Theermanam or Muktaya. A Jathiswaram highlights the melody, rhythm and movement in dance. It evokes the harmony and joy of dance in spectators

Tandai Muzhanga Shabdam

Raga: Ragamalika

Tala: Misrachapu

Composer: Gurus Dhananjayan - contemporary

Choreographer: Gurus Dhananjayan

The shabdam has both nritta (abstract pure dance) and abinaya (expression and emotion) components. In tonight’s performance, the shabdam is in praise of Lord Muruga, the son of Lord Shiva and Parvathi. The story, from his birth to his blossoming as a young man who woos and marries Valli is depicted.

It starts by describing the Lord as a young baby, who is crawling on his hands and knees, making his ankle bells tinkle and chime.

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His mother, Parvathy, sings him a loving lullaby.

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Next, he is described as a toddler, who is taking his first steps holding onto his mother’s hands.

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She is filled with delight as he says his first words that are as sweet as honey to her ears, and smiles and laughs at her with all his charm.



As he grows up, he is described as the one with a beautiful body, with the light brown hue of the tender mango leaves.

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He has jet black eyebrows, wears a vermillion mark on his forehead, and emanates the fragrance of sandalwood.

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“The son of Shiva, please come to me.”



“The one who rides on a blue peacock holding a spear in his hand – when can I get a glimpse of you?

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When will you come and bless me with your love and fill my heart with bliss?”

Lord Muruga decides to woo Valli, a tribal girl living in the forest.

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He comes to her in the garb of an old man who after having had a meal, wants to quench his thirst.

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He requests her for water.

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As she is pouring the water, he grabs her hand and proposes to her.

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She flatly refuses his advances and tells him to leave her alone.

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Then Muruga asks his brother Ganesha to come in the form of an elephant.

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Valli is very afraid of the elephant and runs and hides behind the old man.

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Muruga reveals himself and marries Valli.

In the concluding verse, the smile of the Lord is compared to priceless gems and pearls.

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The poet concludes with a reference to Thiruchendoor Muruga who lives in a temple near the seashore and beseeches him to come and bless him.

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Shabdham in ragamalika, and misra chapu thalam - composed and choreographed by the dhananjayans.

Swamiyai Varnam

Raga: Ragamalika

Tala: Adi

Composer: KN Dandayudhapani Pillai, 1921 to 1974

Choreographer: Vijaykumar Srinivasan and M Subhashini Vijay Santhanam

**The Varnam is the most elaborate item presented in any Bharatanatyam repertoire. It includes complex rhythymic passages along with interpretive dance and stories supporting the main idea of the lyrics. This varnam's primary premise is Shringara Bhakti or love of the heroine towards her Lord Shiva; both as beloved and saviour.**

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**Oh dear friend please bring my Lord without delay/this very instant**

**His face that is as handsome as the full moon is tormenting me because it seems to be emitting fiery rays**

**Oh friend! I do not understand the reason for this ünecessary delay in meeting with me, for after all, is this not the time/moment to enjoy the essence of the spring season, when every being is frolicking about in the joy of union?**

**My Lord is none other than the one who is praised by the entire world; and who delights none other than Goddess pArvati or Devamanohari herself. And the one who explained the essence along with the context of the primeval texts and vedas**

**He is the Lord who gave birth to kArtikEya, the faced one.**

**Despite his omniscience, he roams around like a wastrel without any purpose/protection**

**He has concealed a woman in one half of his body referring to the Ardhanari manifestation of Lord Shiva:**

**Oh friend! My desire is become unbearably excessive because my mind and heart are constantly filled by thoughts of him, Siva; who wears snakes as adornments**

**Searching for the Lord who is praised by vishNu I walked for miles through the harsh forest and at the very end, I had a vision of him. He was more handsome than a crore manmathas.**

**He gave me several reassurances that he would wed me in public. However, without understanding that I am proud woman he has now left me languishing!**

**The heroine describes the scene that constantly inhabits her thoughts and sets her desires aflame. She says: The vision of my Lord with a raised foot that looks like a red lotus dancing, with the Ganges flowing out of his matted locks, the moon, and the nectar, swaying, his gaNas dancing along; the auspicious pArvati performing in unison while clearly lost in the music and movement; vishNu and brahmA maintaining rhythm and nandi joining in on his maddaLam to the sorkaTTu 'nangutOm' ; the celestial bard nArada struming his harp and singing along ; and his pristinely pure eyes and earrings swaying to his bodily movements**

**This is constantly in my thoughts, driving me insane with the desire to be united with him**

Sree Vigna Rajam Bhaje - NEW

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Mahalakshmi Ashtakam - NEW

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Mutthai Taru Tirupugahzh

Raga: Shanmughapriya

Tala: Misrachapu

Composer: Arunagirinathar

Choreographer: M Subhashini Vijay Santhanam

**This item is in praise of the Lord Muruga, son of Shiva and Parvathi. Saint Arunagirinathar composed his hymns in musical Tamil which conform to 'Sandham' or musical meter. Muruga is described as the consort of Deivayanai, the favorite of Vishnu and a valiant commander on the battlefield**

Madhuvanthi Thillana

Raga: Madhuvanthi

Tala: Adi

Composer: Sri. Lalgudi G Jayaraman 1930-2013

Choreographer: M. Subhashini Vijay Santhanam

**This is a fast and lively dance, which traditionally concludes a Bharathanatyam recital. It is in praise of Lord Krishna.
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**It is accompanied by a short verse that says ―I thought of you everyday and yearned for you. My love, you are the one who stole my heart. I will never be apart from you again.‖ **

Special Item - NEW

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Pavamana Mangalam

Raga: Saurashtram

Tala: Adi

Composer: Saint Thyagaraja (1767-1847)

Choreographer: Smt. Rukmini Devi Arundale (1904-1986)

The dancer will now conclude her recital with a Mangalam saluting God, Guru and the audience for making her performance a success.

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