This action might not be possible to undo. Are you sure you want to continue?
Indian classical dance has a distinct character that reflects the great cultural and traditional endeavor. The forms of Indian dance have transcended beyond the fences and socio-cultural hindrances. Exponents of the Indian classical dance believe that it has the caliber of creating a new and disciplined lifestyle. The Indian Classical Dance is often regarded as the form of worship and meditation. The performers of Indian Classical Dance, despite of the background and forms, have played a crucial role in presenting India to the forefront of the World stage. It has helped in ending the erstwhile artistic isolation. Here, in the following lines, we provide the profile and biography of those great artists who made the country proud.
Born: 1954 Contributions Mallika Sarabhai, a multifaceted personality, is a noted Kuchipudi and Bharatnatyam dancer. She has immensely contributed to the fields of acting, writing and publishing. She is a social activist and has participated in many socio-developmental projects initiated by the United Nations. Mallika Sarabhai has also received the "French Palme D'or'', the highest civilian award of France. Life Born to famous dancer Mrinalini Sarabhai and reputed space scientist Vikram Sarabhai, Mallika is a woman of many dimensions and talents. She is a noted dancer, film maker, TV anchor and social activist. Mallika Sarabhai, an alumnus of IIM Ahmedabad, was trained by R. Acharyelu in Kuchipudi. As a young dancer, Mallika won many international awards for her classical dance including the "French Palme D'or'', the highest civilian award of France. In 1977, she took over the reigns of Darpana, the arts academy founded by her parents. Theater and Dances Mallika Sarabhai's theatre works reflect the challenges of the society and sends a strong message. Her natural charm with conviction creates a unique style of presentation. Following are some of the works performed by her: Unheard Voices "Unheard Voices" is a physical, musical theatre piece. It is based on Harsh Mander's book "Unheard Voices". The story is about the lives of marginalized faces - the beggars, children at the Traffic Signal and "chhotu", the little child at roadside restaurant. These are stores of struggle and courage. India Then, Now, Forever: This revolves around the multiple lifestyle of the people of India. It attempts to show the resemblance between the life of the tribal of Mizoram and their lifestyles with the bollywood. The show takes the audience from the temples of southern India to the forests of the Dangs and the minds of today's creators.
corruption. The project supported by ArtVenture took crucial learning on how to avoid maternal deaths and infant deaths amongst the very deprived communities. In 1979. violence etc. Some of her critically acclaimed films include "Lovesongs: Yesterday. . with social issues like gender bias. Today. communal hatred. The movie was launched in French and English. directed by renowned director Peter Brook. "A Thousand Flowers" and "Katha". she was criticized by the extreme right-wing political parties after she filed a Public Interest Litigation in the Supreme Court of India. to archive and preserve the folk and tribal culture of India. UNICEF Anandshala Project in 2005. Controversy In 2001. In 1982. Following are some of the acclaimed books published by Mallika Sarabahi and Mapin Publishing Private Limited. In the PIL. Besides. Peter Brook's "The Mahabharata". she had accused the BJP-led state government of supporting the genocide against the Muslims in Gujarat. Mallika Sarabhai took up many developmental projects including the "The Acting Healthy Project" (2008). the environment. Deeply excited by the possibility of continuing the work as an activist on TV. Publisher Mallika Sarabhai never tried to confine herself into a single character. She also formed "JANAVAK". "Kahkasha". she founded the "Darpana for Development" concentrating on the development of performance as a language for change. she has also played an active role in the UNICEF Peer Educators Project. in 2001 she launched Darpana Communications. called Inside Outside. • • • • • • • • • • • • • India's Daughters Cultural Guide to Ahmedabad Spectacular India Jute Handlooms of India Sufism And Beyond Romance of Golconda Diamonds From Mustard Fields to Disco Lights Parvati: Goddess of Love Documenting Chandigarh Image & Imagination:5 Indian Artists Performing Arts of Kerala Understanding Kuchipudi (Co-Author) Krishna as Shrinathji: Miniature Paintings From Nathdwara Social Thinker In an effort to serve the society. she has also made herself count in the world of publications. Mallika Sarabhai published India's first design magazine. she played the character of Draupadi in "The Mahabharata". She has also produced over 2500 hours of broadcast programming in Gujarati dealing. After being recognized as a reputed dancer and film actor. In 1984. Tomorrow".2007 FATEHPURA Model village project and UNICEF Rural Health Project. the voice of the people.Actor Mallika Sarabhai started her acting career at the age of fifteen and has worked in more than 30 films.
dramatics. humble and disciplined members of today's society. Awards Pandit Birju Maharaj has won several honors and awards including the coveted Padma Vibhushan (1986). the family moved to Bombay. Kalashram. he was invited to Delhi to teach at Sangeet Bharati. Soviet Land Nehru Award. Kalashram Kathak maestro Pandit Birju Maharaj had a dream of opening a dance-school and Kalashram is the realface of the dream. practice halls and amphitheatre of Kalarshram reflect a shade of rural setup in the busy and fast urban lifestyle. Thumri. His father. with numerous trees and ponds would be extremely inspiring and would bring everyone close to the simple. but also live as modest. However. yoga. The objective of the institute is primarily to produce highly talented students who would not only prove worthy of the training they receive. So. and Khairagarh University. used to spend much time in teaching young Birju. The classrooms. the students are trained in the field of Kathak. the master of Kathak. popularly known as Achhan Maharaj. Sangam Kala Award. Sanskrit. He is a wonderful singer with a strong grip over. He gave his first performance at the age of seven. Pandit Birju Maharaj is not only a Kathak dancer but also a sensitive poet and captivating orator. taught in Sangeet Bharati. Pandit Birju Maharaj has also been conferred with the honorary Doctorate degrees from Banaras Hindu University. Life Birju Maharaj was born in the house of renowned Kathak proponent. 1938 Contributions Birju Maharaj is a leading exponent and torch-bearer of the Kalka-Bindadin gharana of Lucknow. The natural atmosphere. Bharatiya Kala Kendra and headed the teaching faculty Kathak Kendra (a unit of the Sangeet Natak Akademi) in Delhi. He has performed in almost all the countries of the globe. Dadra. Jagannath Maharaj of Lucknow Gharana. and other associated disciplines like vocal and instrumental music. unassuming but rich heritage of the country. . Birju also accompanied his father to the places where Achhan Maharaj had to go to perform. Birju Maharaj started learning dance forms at a very early stage. After his retirement from Kathak Kendra. In 2002. the fundamentals of Kathak. He was the recipient of the Lata Mangeshkar Puraskaar. There.Born: February 4. At the age of thirteen. as a result. Teaching Birju Maharaj. in 1998 Birju Maharaj started his own Kathak and Indian fine arts academy. stagecraft etc. painting. In Kalashram. he mastered the different aspects of the Kathak and other Indian classical dance forms. He has also been awarded with the Kalidas Samman by the Government of Madhya Pradesh. He is the only son and disciple of Shri Achhan Maharaj and is a familiar face of Indian Kathak dance all over the world. Bhajan and Ghazals. His uncles. Lachhu Maharaj and Shambhu Maharaj also guided him in learning the Kathak dance. after the death of his father in 1947.
until her death in 1986. Arundale was also in-charge of the organization's paper. Subramania Sastri. Rukmini Devi gave her first performance at the Diamond Jubilee celebrations of the Theosophical Society in 1935. Marriage Rukmini Devi first met Dr George Arundale. The marriage created a huge uproar in the society. "New India". Fascinated by Rukmini Devi's love for the mankind and humanity. Dr Arundale. the then Prime Minister of India. . Anna Pavlova After her marriage. Rukmini Devi and Dr George Arundale formed the Kalakshetra.Born: Passed February Away: 29. Rukmini Devi was enthralled by the great artiste. February 1904 24. Anna Pavlova on a ship to Australia. It is believed that Rukmini Devi had declined the chair of the President of India. Life Rukmini Devi Arundale was born on February 29. She also acted as the Vice President of International Vegetarian Union for 31 years. Her charismatic personality and contribution to the renaissance of Indian Classical music attained her niche in the arena of Indian culture. S. Ever since. The name was decided by Pandit S. Neelakanta Sastri shifted to Madras (now. an Indian classical dance form. It was on Pavlova's request that Rukmini Devi learnt "ballet". a Sanskrit scholar and member of the academy. at an early stage. in 1917. once offered by Morarji Desai. She began to learn dance performances from Mylapore Gauri Ammal. Kalakshetra Within a year after her first performance at the Theosophical Society. Her father's involvement in the Theosophical Society paved the way for Rukmini to come under the umbrella of Annie Besant's influence. near the headquarters of Theosophical Society at Adyar. 1904. He was an active member of the Theosophical Society. married her with the approval and support of her family. All the members were deeply committed to the Theosophical society and as well as Kalakshetra. Rukmini Devi advocated the cause of Bharatnatyam. considered as a low and vulgar art during that period. to Neelakanta Sastri and Seshammal. After his retirement. The family built their house. especially the conservatives. Muthukumara Pillai and Karaikkal Saradambal Ammal joined the Kalakshetra as its teachers. Many renowned dancers including Meenakshisundaram Pillai. Dance Though she belonged to the upper-caste. Rukmini Devi was also known for her efforts towards the protection of animal rights and their welfare. Vegetarianism Rukmini Devi was against the custom of killing and sacrificing of animals. Radha. she began to attend different performances of Pavlova's in Australia. Leelavati (Rukmini's niece) were among the first to join Kalakshetra. Sarada. Chennai). an engineer with the Public Works Department. was a dedicated member of the Theosophical Society formed by Annie Besant. 1986 Contributions Rukmini Devi Arundale was a reputed dancer and choreographer of Bharatnatyam. in 1920. Her father. They couldn't accept the fact that a Brahmin girl can marry outside the prevailing caste-system. She also convinced proficient Meenakshisundaram Pillai to come to Madras to teach her. Rukmini Devi met the legendary ballerina.
the narrative tradition of the North-Indian dance form in "Shakuntala". Delhi University. Besides. Ramkrishna Paramhansa and Mahatma Gandhi. Rukmini Devi was awarded the Padma Bhushan and in 1967. Some of her well-known books are: • • • • • • • "Indian Classical Dances" "Performing Arts in India: A Policy Perspective" "Indian Theatre and Dance Traditions" "Kathak: Rhythmic Echoes & Reflections" "The Dance Legacy of Patliputra" "Sterling Book of Indian Classical Dances" "Folk Dance Traditions of India" Awards Shovana Narayan has been conferred with numerous awards including the Padmashri Award for excellence and outstanding contribution to dance in 1992 and the Sangeet Natak Akademi award in 1999. she . unknown and talented faces of the field. Contributions Shovana Narayan is a Kathak Maestro and an outstanding dancer. Delhi. Shovana Narayan also organizes two festivals for providing a platform to the young. She created a new and innovative style of performing arts by enriching it with a deeper and wider canvas of expression and dimensions. Narayan is the first ever professional dancer who combines a full fledged career as a senior serving civil servant in the Government of India. Shovana Narayan has also worked with many western dancers and musicians. Ramana Maharshi. Herbert Traxl. She also featured in India Today's list of '100 People Who Shaped India'.Awards In 1956. Life Shovana Narayan established herself as a dancer during 1970s and the last four decades have seen her captivating audiences in numerous dance festivals. She is married to Dr. Author The noted Kathak dancer has written around ten books on the subject of dance. Some of her choreographic works like "Moonlight Impressionism" and "The Dawn After" have been successful in bringing out the true color of different dance and musical forms. Shovana Narayan was the first dancer to work on philosophical themes and on the lives of contemporary sages such as Vivekananda. She is an incarnation of the great artistic and social traditions of India. former Austrian Ambassador to India. She is also the first dancer to have rejuvenated the soliloquy tradition. She has set a unique trend by redefining dance and often considered as a living legend in the field of art. She has been awarded with Padmashri in 1992 and Sangeet Natak Academy Awards in 1999. Shovana Narayan is an alumnus of Miranda House. received the "Sangeet Natak Akademi Fellowship". Trained by legendary Kathak maestro Pandit Birju Maharaj and Kundanlal Gangani at Kathak Kendra. Shovana Narayan is known for her strong urge for experimentation.
the Indira Gandhi National Center for Arts. 'Singar Mani' from Haridas Sangeet Sammelan. sculpture and painting as dance is a rare confluence of all these arts. which are currently in the repository of Odissi. It includes the. For her contributions in the field of "Classical dancing" she has received accolades from many national and international organizations. 1944 Contributions Sonal Mansingh is an eminent Indian classical dancer and a leading exponent of Bharatnatyam. and Chhau. and one of the first five Governors of India. Medals of . Sonal aggrandized her dance by acquiring the different strands of Orissa culture. 'Indira Priya Darshini Awards'. at the Pandanallur school in Bombay. in 1992. 'Rajiv Gandhi Excellence Award'. and Rotary International Award and Japan's Oisca Award. Awards Sonal Mansingh is the youngest recipient to receive the Padma Bhushan awarded by the President of India in 1992. Manavatta'. Besides being a dancer. Sonal Mansingh believes that society and its happenings have an impact on all arts and subsequently on the artists. poetry. Life Sonal Mansingh was born to Arvind and Poornima Pakvasa on May 1. The organization has been working to promote performing arts and nurturing the cultural legacy of India. She is also the trustee of the largest institution in India. Centre for Indian Classical Dances In 1977. Sonal Mansingh founded the Centre for Indian Classical Dances in New Delhi to train students in Indian classical dance. Her grandfather was Mangal Das Pakvasa. Her renowned choreographic works include 'Indradhanush'. Learning Sonal Mansingh started learning fundamentals of Bharatnatyam from Guru Kumar Jayakar at the age of seven. Her maiden professional performance was at Mumbai in 1964. To her. teacher. In 2003. Sonal Mansingh is a well-known choreographer. (Honors) degree in German Literature from Elphinstone College. orator and a social activist. Besides. 'Mera Bharat'. a few of which are listed below. 'Natya Kala Ratna' from National Cultural Organisation.has also been awarded with Rajiv Gandhi Puraskar.A. Indira Priyadarshini Samman. According to her. languages. a freedom fighter. Later. 'Draupati'. 'Devi Durga'. She was the youngest recipient of Padma Bhushan. Sonal has made much choreography on Indian mythology. She learnt almost all the dance numbers. In 1965. Bombay. 'Sabras'. She has B. Born: May 1. Sonal became the first Indian woman dancer to be awarded with Padma Vibhushan. she has received several other honors for her contribution to dance. she learnt Bharatanatyam from Professor U S Krishna Rao and Chandrabhaga Devi at Bangalore. 'Aatmayan'. 1944 in Mumbai. Her mother was a noted social activist and in 2002 awarded with Padma Bhushan. she learnt Odissi from Guru Kelucharan Mohapatra. dance is the medium through which she can present the views of the unheard. Kuchipudi. dancers must have love for literature.
After Uday's death in 1977. He also met famous Russian ballerina. In 1920. where his ballads were premiered. Anna Pavlova at Covent Garden. Life Born in Udaipur. Shankaran Namboodiri for Kathakali. Uttar Pradesh. he choreographed two ballads. was best known for his fusion in Western and Eastern musical styles. Ananda Shankar. Uday Shankar went to England to study painting at the Royal College of Art. his presentations were creative. his son. his widow Amala Shankar took the charge of the school in Kolkata. In 1938. Amobi Singh for Manipuri and Ustad Allauddin Khan. J. . Kandappa Pillai for Bharatanatyam. School of the Arts in Bombay. His youngest brother. He also knitted the two different techniques so beautifully that his art became hugely popular both in India and the West. Uday Shankar used the essence of various traditions and techniques in his dance dramas and succeeded in presenting an integrated composition. The school continues to teach an all-embracing performance curriculum that includes training in folk and classical dance. Uday Shankar returned to India to form a dance troupe of his own. September 1900 26. Uday Shankar also had the brilliance of a painter within. During the World War-II. Family Uday Shankar was married to one of his students Amala and also had a son and a daughter. He was the eldest of the four siblings. Though he had no formal training in any classical form. Rajasthan. There. London. 1977 Contribution Uday Shankar initiated a unique movement of revival of classical dances in 1930. Own Troupe In 1929. The government of India awarded Uday Shankar with the coveted "Padma Vibhushan. Rabindra is a popular sitar maestro and familiar to all as "Pandit Ravi Shankar". Later. Born: Passed December Away: 8. To develop his skills further. based on the stories of Radha and Krishna and the other on "A Hindu Wedding". he toured through the western world and learned the western theatrical techniques. improvisation. He was married to classical dancer Tanushree Shankar. he was sent to the J. but in Calcutta. costume design etc. Among the experts were. He also invited leading exponents of different musical forms to teach in the school. Sonal becomes the first Indian woman dancer to receive this high honor. Besides an adept classical dancer. Awards Uday Shankar was awarded with "Padma Vibhushan" by the Government of India and the Desikottama by the Visva-Bharati University. Rewarded with Padma Vibhushan in 2003. the school came to be known as "Uday Shankar Indian Culture Center". the "Uday Shankar Indian Culture Center" was forced to shut and was reopened twenty years later.Friendship of Vietnam and Cuba State Council etc. Uday Shankar opened a dance school at Almora. Between 1930 and 1960. Uday Shankar was the eldest son of noted barrister Syam Shankar.
at the age of seventeen years. Yamini Krishnamurthy performed her debut dance event in Chennai. Awards For her contribution in the development and promotion of the Indian classical dance forms. at the age of seventeen years. She is also considered as the torch-bearer of the Kuchipudi form of dance. Yamini Krishnamurthy started the 'Yamini school of Dance' in Delhi in 1990. Chennai. Yamini was recognized as "Asthana Nartaki" (resident dancer) of the Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanam.the second highest civilian awards of the India. Training Yamini Krishnamurthy received the initial training of Bharatnatyam from Rukmini Devi Arundale. Her book 'A Passion for Dance' was well-received and appraised by the critics. named her `Yamini Poornatilaka`. she had a colorful and eventful dancing career. meaning. Yamini led an eventful dancing career and has been honored with Padma Shri and Padma Bhushan by the government of India. She has also made a special program on dance for Doordarshan channel. Yamini also learnt Odissi from Guru Pankaj Charan Das and Kelucharan Mahapatra. later. She was born into a Telugu family on a full moon night in 1940 at Madanapalli. Her grandfather. To impart training to younger dancers.Born: 1940 Contributions Yamini 'Poornatilaka' Krishnamurthy. Her dancing career brought her many awards. Yamini became one of the most admired dancers of the country. She was. Life Yamini Krishnamurthy is an eminent dancer and one of the major figures of Bharatnatyam and Kuchipudi dancing. Within three years of her maiden performance. in 2001. Ever since. Since childhood.at Kalakshetra School of Dance. "a beautiful mark on the brow of light". Yamini was fond of dancing and wanted to become a dancer. including the coveted Padma Shree in the year 1968 and the Padma Bhushan . groomed by eminent masters like Kanchipuram Ellappa Pillai and Thanjavur Kittappa Pillai. Besides Bharatnatyam and Kuchipudi. In 1957. She learnt Kuchipudi under the guidance of Vedantam Lakshmi Narayana Shastri. She was also honored with the Sangeet Natak akademi Award in 1977 . better known as Yamini Krishnamurthy is a renowned Kuchipudi and Bharatnatyam dancer. a noted Urdu poet. She started her career with a dance performance in 1957. Yamini appeared as one of the leading classical dancers of India. Chinta Krishnamurthy and Pasumarthy Venugopal Krishna Sharma. Her performances brought accolades from national and international recognition arena. Andhra Pradesh.
This action might not be possible to undo. Are you sure you want to continue?