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Asian Tribune is published by World Institute For Asian Studies|Powered by WIAS Vol. 12 No. 2522

Graceful dance by Jayanthi Srivatsan

By Prakash M. Swamy
New York, 24 January, (

Jayanthi Srivatsan began her concert with an invocation – Shobhillu Saptaswara - in Ragam Jaganmohini Tyagaraja kriti and choreographed by Adyar K.Lakshman. The program was organised by Brahma Gana Sabha at Pethachi Auditorium in Alwarpet on January 22.

Varnam is the traditional test of the performer's mastery of the dramatic elements through coordination of facial expression, hand gestures and intricate footwork. She demonstrated the narrative and expressive aspects of the dance form in her Varnam item – Nee Intha Mayam in Ragam Dhanyasi of Papanasam Sivan. Delightful, passionate, controlled and filled with mysterious symbolism. The faces of the dancer express concise, rich and varied emotions, adding clarity and depth to the intricate movements

Her Javali -Samayam ithe - in Behag composed by Pattinam Subramaniam Iyer and choreographed by her guru Bragha Bessell) displayed the grace and charm of bharatanatyam that are on forefront - flickering movements of the hands and fingers and the buoyancy in the hips and knees, the expressive use of the eyes.

Her final piece Thilana – Ragam Indolam, she executed the piece with grace and depth of feeling, moving the audience to experience rasa (aesthetic flavour), bhava (emotion), and abhinayam (expression).

Lightness and ease was evident everywhere. Each piece started with a brief narration, and then the clarity and warmth of the dancing took over. Fingers trembled like flames. Ankle bells shivered with each step, but the steps were so precisely placed and their force so minutely calibrated that you heard clear music from the bells, never noise.

This Bharatanatyam is so thoroughly enveloped and pleased the senses as this one did with its many fine details, the foremost of which was the superbly controlled technique of the dancer. Her performance displayed a rigorous commitment to refining her practice, showing the difference between executing, or even mastering, steps and articulating every part of the body like a flame.

Her mastery of dance and her integrity of line, her firmly grounded plasticity allowing her to maintain control even when stretched, lunged or twisted out from her axis, shaping refined gestures and minute flutters of her fingers. Always, she displayed follow-through from head to toe, crackling with energy. Her dancing breathed as one with the singers' vocal lines.

Nattuvangam was by Guru Smt. Roja Kannan and Parur M.S. Anatha Sree was on vocal support. Vijayaraghavan on mridangam and Durai Srinivasan on violin gave adequate support to the program.

Her formal training started at the age of four and she had her arangetram at the age of 12 with the renowned Guru Adyar K.Lakshman. Jayanthi continued to pursue the art form from Guru Roja Kannan and has been performing for twenty plus years both in India and abroad. Jayanthi is learning the nuances of abhinaya from the abhinaya exponent Bragha Bessell.
ayanthi was adjudged the best abhinaya artist by Padmabhushan Kalanidhi Narayanan during the Natyarangam abhinaya competition.

She has been a part of several dance productions of her gurus like Dasaavatharam, Endaro Mahanubhavulu, Aranganin Padhayil to name a few. Jayanthi was part of the Nitya Akhanda Nrittam a 27 hour non-stop Bharatanatyam Marathon relay conducted in Delhi by Ganesh Natyalaya for the 80th Birthday celebration of Padmabhushan Guru Saroja Vaidyanathan.

The Lions Club of Golden Cultural Capital honoured Jayanthi under Iyal as the Best Dancer in February 2015. She was awarded the Best Performer twice for the senior category by Sri Parthasarathy Swami Sabha during its dance festival.

Jayanthi is a recipient of the title Naatya Tharagai honoured to her by the America Tamil Sangam.The Rotary Club of Madras Central honored her with the Vocational Excellence Award in recognition for her achievements and excellence in the art form.

Photos: By Gayari Sundarakandan

- Asian Tribune -

Graceful dance by Jayanthi Srivatsan
Graceful dance by Jayanthi Srivatsan
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