22 August, 2012
Priyadarshini G - Student of Suryanarayana Moorthy - under the auspices of Gana Mukunda Priya
Often one sees glitzy displays of dance in the name of Bharatanatyam whichmiss out the core elements of classicism and prove to be just superficial entertainment. In this context, it was rewarding to see that Priyadarshini Govindarajan’s Bharatanatyam performance had the clean feel which comes with adhering to the complete discipline of the art.
A senior student of Suryanarayana Moorthy and a first year student of engineering, her recital for Gana Mukunda Priya was commendable for the well-ordered display of rhythm and emotion. ‘Azhutham’ that can be roughly translated as firmness in defining the body energy was also another plus point no doubt the out come of the rigorous training imparted by her gifted teacher. That evening, she was awarded with a commendation for her proficiency in Bharatanatyam and completion of fifteen years in learning the art by the sabha.
Priyadarshini’s performance revolved around the theme of Muruga. Thus her very first item for the performance was Shanmugha Kautuvam in Shanmugapriya raga. Though the blistering pace from the outset gave a good impression of briskness to the recital, as the beginning number it also resulted in little room for the young dancer to settle down into the performing space. Nevertheless she adapted well and proceeded to give a good account of herself.
Velanai Kanbom in Kamas raga was the varnam of choice and the longest piece. The choreography of the varnam was a balanced one which took into account intricacies of rhythm as well as those of emotion. Substantial adavus (steps) and not just flimsy poses were woven into the jatis. The dancer was put through varying speeds, the five nadais as well as different selections from the adavus family.
Priyadarshini rose to the occasion and her graceful accomplishment of the pure dance portions established her credentials as a talented and hardworking dancer. In addition, her delivery of ideas in the pallavi and anupallavi revealed her promising skills in abhinaya. Her portrait of Muruga as the dashing hero and spouse of Valli and Devayanai, who showers compassion on his devotees, was finely done.
The Tamil padam Ethanai Sonnallum in Saveriraga was a decent attempt. The mother advising the angry young woman to tone down her temper and amend the quarrel with her husband formed the main idea here.
The artist succeeded in maintaining the basic stance and worry of the mother. Yet, bringing out variations on this motif through fuller facial expressions would have accentuated the mood. Some effort could have been devoted to show the daughter’s shrewishness also. Thillanna in Mohanakalyani raga completed the vibrant aspect of the natyam.
Dignified nattuvangam by the teacher Suryanarayana Moorthy, added to the talents of singing of Sai, mridangam play of Guru Bharadwaj, flute rendering of Ramana and veena playing of Anantanarayanan together boosted the dancing.