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Ramanavami Celebrations – Classical Dance At Ramalayam, Jubilee Hills

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RamanavamiRamanavami was celebrated with classical dance programs at Ramalayam , Jubilee hills on Thursday last week. The temple stage was the perfect setting for the spiritual fervour showcased by Kuchipudi dancer Sanjana Siripurapu followed by Smitha Madhav’s Bharatanatyam recital, writes Anna Rao

The first recital was Kuchipudi by Sanjana Siripurapu, student of Padmashri Dr.Sobha Naidu. An auspicious invocation to Lord Ganesha heralded the evening. “Pranavakaram” in abheri extolls Siddhi Vinayaka. Sanjana depicted the omkara form of the God, his jewellery and dance. She exhibited a fluid grace as she enchanted the audience with her natya style. She used the vocabulary of- her medium to perfection as she flowed into stance after stance with nimblefooted ability. Annamacharya keertana “ Deva Devam Bhaje “ was flawlessly enacted beautifully portraying Rama as the the lotus eyed  eminent and perfect King. The lord of Sita who wielded the bow of Sankara, conquered Lanka and comforted Vibhishana. The Bharatanatyam performance that followed was by Dr. Smitha Madhav and Smt .Bhargavi. The Pushpanjali appropriately started  with lyrics from Valmiki Ramayana. Smitha shone as Rama in the grand coronation sequence as Pattabhishekam was performed to the Lord and his Consort together by eminent sage Vasishtha along with eight Ministers in attendance. Garuda alarippu was an extraordinary item choreographed by Smitha. The vahana of Lord Vishnu who carried him in numerous battles came alive on the dais. Eagle eyes darted to catch prey movements in exquisite mukhabhinaya.

Angikaabhinaya  was superb as the bird’s majestic wing span of immense length was of photographic quality. Combined in a whole Garuda seemed to hover and soar, talons and wings rippling across the stage as the audience watched captivated. Garuda mandala position was a special feature in this piece. Bhavayami Raghuramam of Swathi Thirunal in ragamalika encapsulated in concise form with pendant like images was brought to life by the dancer in her brilliant enactments. Swayamvar episode was a highlight. Turning from being a vicious Surpanakha to a fiery Lakshmana, abounding Maricha as the golden deer; Ravana both triumphant with hubris and then destroyed -Smitha exuded devotion as Ramanama, the taraka mantra solaced and succoured mankind in “Rama Jogi ” by Ramadasu. Bhargavi was endearing in a folk song by Arunachala Kavi as she vivaciously became a Soothsayer praising Rama’s qualities to his intended bride. Thillana in paras was also done energetically by Bhargavi. A mangalam concluded the programs.

It was interesting to watch the contrasting styles of Rama wielding the bow in both dance forms, Kuchipudi the stance was more deliberate, sinous and flowing whereas in bharatanatyam it was taut, rapid and concise – both displayed exquisitely on Ramanavami day on temple stage.

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