Bharatanatyam

Bharatanatyam

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Bharatanatyam may be the oldest classical dance tradition of India, with a rich history dating back almost 2000 years. It initiated in the Hindu temples of Tamil Nadu and eventually flourished in South India. The name was derived by joining two words, ‘Bharata’ and Natyam’ where ‘Natyam means dance and ‘Bharata’ is a mnemonic comprising of ‘bha’, ‘ra’ and ‘ta’, wherein ‘bhava’ stands for emotion and feelings; ‘raga’ stands for melody and framework for musical notes, and ‘tala’ stands for rhythm. The theoretical base, which has been referred to as Sadir, traces back to the ancient Sanskrit text of performing arts by Bharata Muni, called ‘Natya Shastra’.