Smaran Dance Festival - 2016  was conducted on September 4th, 2016 at Cubberley theatre, Palo Alto, California

 

We had a number of applications and our panel of Judges from India selected few amazing talented dancers  Lalli Venkat Bharatanatyam), Anvitha Pillati (Kuchipudi), Suprita Trilok(Odissi), Meghana & Antara Rao (Kathak).

We were fortunate to have Dynamic Bharatanatyam exponent Rukmini Vijayakumar performing her beautiful items.

Smaran Dance Festival was associated once again with Aram Sei, a local non-profit organization, that we always support and truly believe in their cause of supporting grassroot charities worldwidewith specific focus on education and healthcare. Click on the link to know more about Aram Sei: https://aramsei.wordpress.com/home/
 

Celebrity Artist from India

Rukmini Vijayakumar

 

Rukmini, reflects the very same sentiment in her dancing. Her dance is her poetry.

Rukmini began her formal training in dance at the age of eight. She had an initial exposure to ballet, but her primary training and rigorous practice through her early years was in Bharatanatyam. She had her Arangetram, (debut, solo performance) in 1998 under Guru Padmini Rao, after which she continued her practice under Guru Narmada, (a recipient of the Sangeet Natak Academy Award) and Guru Sundari Santhanam (a senior disciple Dr Padma Subrahmanyam). She was introduced to the teachings of the Natyashastra, and pursued an intense training in the Karanas under Guru Sundari Santhanam for many years. She furthered her knowledge of Bharatanatyam by studying, Sanskrit, Tala (rhythm) in music, and Yoga.

She was re-introduced to Classical Ballet in her late teens and began a serious practice at various dance studios in California and New York, and under Yana Lewis in India. She branched out into, Jazz and Modern dance techniques and was accepted into the Undergraduate program for dance at the Boston Conservatory, one of the most prestigious performing arts schools in the USA.

She founded the Raadha Kalpa Dance Company in 2009, and began working on various projects under the Raadha Kalpa banner. She has conducted workshops, collaborated with guest artists, choreographed productions, and has also organized dance arts festivals. She is the director of her Art Space LshVa, in Bangalore.

Rukmini is an empaneled solo Bharatanatyam artist with the ICCR. She was awarded the title of “Arsha Kala Bhushanam”, by Swami Dayananda Saraswati in 2012.

She has performed in many venues in India and abroad and has been appreciated for her unique style, innovative choreography, athleticism, arresting emotions and attention to detail. Her recent performances at the 80th Anniversary of the Jacobs Pillow dance festival, USA and at the Erasing borders Festival, NY, were well received. Her dance productions “Nayani” and “Prabhavati” toured the USA, and Middle East, in 2012, 2013 raising funds for AIM for Seva.

She has performed as a bharatanatyam soloist in Khajuraho, Modhera, IIC, Hampi, Kartik Fine Arts, Bharat Kalachar, Narada Gana Sabha, Bharat Bhavan, Bhopal and several other renowned festivals.

Rukmini’s enthuse in theater and acting prompted her study of Film and Theater at the New York Film academy and at the Ivana Chubbuck studios. She has performed in several theater productions in India and has received much appreciation for her delineated character of Aung San Suu Kyi, in the one woman show, “The Lady of Burma”, by Richard Shannon, directed by national award winner, Prakash Belawadi. She has also been lauded for her unique role as lead, in her first Tamil film, Bommalattam, with Nana Patekar directed by Bharati Raja. She was well recognized for her performance in Ananda Tandavam, by Gandhi Krishna and has recently acted in Kochaidaiyaan, with actor Rajinikanth, and Shamitabh directed by R Balki. She also has a special appearance playing a pivotal role, and a dance sequence in the movie Bajarangi, in kannada, released 2013.

She has endorsed several products as a model in many print and TV commercials in India and other Asian countries and continues to work in the Film and TV industry in India.

Though Rukmini’s interests and training are varied, her true passion lies in dance. Her dedication to dance and constant effort to strive for perfection is epitomized in every performance of hers. Her daily practice and incessant hours in the studio, constantly honing and tuning her skills every day, has made her a performer who learns with each performance and with every experience. A true student and a ‘forever blossoming artist’.

She graduated with honors, obtaining a BFA in Modern dance and Ballet. At the conservatory, she was exposed to many other subjects that support dance and performance in the four years that she spent there; Alexander technique, Pilates, Laban notation and movement analysis, Stage design, Choreography, Dance history, Anatomy, Pedagogy, to name a few. been introduced to Anatomy at the Conservatory, she chose to further her interest in this field by taking courses in Gross Anatomy and Exercise physiology at Boston University, and later began a Fitness Instruction Certification at UCLA. Her interest in body mechanism, resulted in her certification as a Mat Power Pilates, instructor.

Bay Area Talents

 
Lalli Venkatakrishnan
Bharatanatyam

Disciple of Guru Jayanthi Sridhar
Anvitha Pillati
Kuchipudi

Disciple of Guru Samidha Satyam
Meghana Rao & Antara Rao
Kathak

Disciple of Guru Nirmala Madhava
Suprita Trilok
Odissi

Disciple of Guru Shipra Avantica Mehrotra
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