Bharatanatyam: 2-Day Workshops with Dr. Vasundhara Doraswami

Bharatanatyam: 2-Day Workshops with Dr. Vasundhara Doraswami

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Wed 27th April 2022: 18:00 - 20:00

Thur 28th April 2022: 18:00 - 20:00

** This course is available in-person at The Bhavan only **

Renowned dancer, choreographer and academic Dr. Vasundhara Doraswamy will conduct a two day Bharatanatayam workshop linked to her performance piece "Surya Namaskara". 

In many cultures, light has long been a symbol of consciousness and self-illumination. “The world is said to have begun with the coming of light”. Sun has inspired mythology in all cultures and the Hindu Mythology is no different. For thousands of years, the Hindus have revered the sun, which they call Surya, as both the physical and spiritual heart of our world and the creator of life itself. 

In this Suryanamaskara, the dancer sings in praise of the Lord responsible for the destruction of the two demons who had engrossed the world in darkness and thus shed light to the Universe. The dancer will showcase various asanas and illustrate convincingly adopting the similar gesture and postures in Bharatanatyam.

Dr Vasundhara obtained her Phd for the research on the correlation between yoga and Bharatanatyam in 1986. This extensive research on yoga and dance led to this production in 1996 and also her book “Natya-Yoga Darshana” - Impacts of spiritual practices on Dance. 

This production was developed by Dr Vasundhara as an extensive 2 hour production which has been shortened to a 30 minute presentation and is being showcased by the septuagenarian here. In 1998, Dr Vasundhara was awarded the title “NatyaJyothi” in the South East Asian Yoga Conference (Melbourne, Australia) for presenting this unique adaptation of Yoga and dance.

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Vasundhara's Chroreography & teaching methodology

Dr. Vasundhara gained her initial training in Pandanallur Style of Bharathanatyam. Over the years, with her experience and creativity has been able to give it a unique footprint of her own which is being recognized by the dance fraternity and the art connoisseurs in her performances and that of her students'. This transformation was never a drastic or intentional move but something that evolved into a beautiful piece of art over the years.

Dr Vasundhara's strong footing in Yoga as a practitioner and further as an exponent of martial arts was what inspired her to experiment within the boundaries of the classical dance of Bharatanatyam.

Incorporation of Yogic postures added to the gorgeousness of the dance form, whereas regular practice of Yoga helped her in perfecting the geometry of the movements making the choreographies a visual treat. Martial arts provided inestimable vibrant energy to these movements. Use of singular hastas, alluring gaits, abhinaya which can communicate easily with all audiences, modifications of the adavus, aharya, inimitable feather-touch footwork, all within the traditional framework have led to a unique footprint that is today identified and recognised by one and all as “Vasundhara Style”. The primary objective is to use Angika Abhinaya for aesthetic delineation. These innovations have been instrumental in taking Bharatanatyam to a wider audience.