Esteem members of SDF selection committee
We are very humbled and privileged to have eminent Gurus from India, who has helped us in selecting the right talent to
perform at SDF-2015
Smt. Rhadha is one of the foremost exponents of the Vazhuvoor tradition of Bharatanatyam. Dancing her way into the hearts of millions of people from the age of five, Smt. Rhadha has earned a definite place among the most accomplished Bharathanatyam dancers of India. An ideal combination of the Dancer, the Guru and the Choreographer, Guru Rhadha has won recognition and acclaim in all three capacities. As the star pupils of the renowned Natyacharya Vazhuvoor Shri Ramaiah Pillai, Guru Rhadha and her illustrious elder sister Smt. Kamala have performed together extensively in India and abroad.
Smt. Rhadha has choreographed and produced a number of critically acclaimed dance ballets such as Bhavaye Padmanabham, Nowka Charithram, Gita Mala, Valli Bharatham, Jaya Jaya Gokula Balam, Meenakshi Ammai Pillai Thamizh, Jaya Jaya Devi (composed by Lalgudi Sri G. Jayaraman) and Lakshmi Prabhavam (composed by Chitraveena Ravikiran) and Chinthaye Hari Haram staged recently at the Cleveland Aradhana in April 2012.
Pushpanjali, an instituition of Bharathanatyam, started by her in 1982 in Chennai, has produced scores of dancers, several of whom have won laurels for the institution and the Guru. Many of them have started dance schools of their own.
Guru Smt. Rhadha has been awarded several titles for her immense contribution to this art form. She was awarded the “Sangita Kala Acharya” by the Madras Music Academy in the year 2010. In addition she has received the titles “ Acharya Choodamani” from Sri Krishna Gana Sabha,
“Nrithya Kala Nipuna” from Mylapore Fine Arts Club,
“Kala Vipanchee” by Vipanchee Trust,
“Kalaimamani,” from the Government of Tamil Nadu,
“Nritya Kala Shironmani,” from Nungambakkam Cultural Academy,
“Nrithya Rathnakara” from the Cleveland Thyagaraja Aradhana Committee,
Excellence Awards from “Natyarangam”, the dance wing of Narada Gana Sabha, Saila Sudha and Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan to name a few.
In 2005, the Government of India conferred on her the Sangeet Natak Akademi Award for excellence in the field of Bharatanatyam.
Smt. Rhadha's career as a performer spans more than five decades. She still gives full fledged traditional solo recitals with much élan and grace, bringing out the essence of the Vazhuvoor style.
Kiran Subramanyam - a name that is synonymous with intelligence, ambition, passion and Bharathanatyam.........
Born into a family that encouraged cultural values, it only seemed natural that Kiran would be a fine artiste himself. Honed in the art of Bharathanatyam, one of the most classical forms of Indian dance, Kiran's passion for the art form, as years went by, knew only one direction-forward. Then came the tough decision - of taking dance more seriously than just a hobby. Not willing to tread the beaten track, Kiran did what very few men were willing to do twenty five years ago-become a professional classical dancer.
His intelligence, intense passion and steadfast commitment saw Kiran growing steadily in this line. Kiran's performances have enthralled scores of audiences all over the world. Among several performances in India and abroad, the one worthy of special mention is Kiran's lead role opposite silver screen's dream girl Hemamalini, in her dance productions performed the world over. Kiran's choreographic works have been lauded for their creative excellence. Coveted awards and titles now bear his name. He recently received the title of “Bharatanatya Prapurusha’ from the Rangashri Kala Samsthe in collaboration with Department of Kannada and Culture and “NRITYA NIPUNA” by the Karnataka Nritya Kala Parishath for his contribution to the field of Bharatanatyam.
He also conceptualized and conducted the extremely popular dance based show - “HEJJE MELE HEJJE”, which is being aired on Kasturi Channel. And his institution for dance, RASIKA, has made a mark as one of its kind. Today, Kiran dances along with his wife Sandhya and together they have created waves in the dance circles across the globe.
Kiran is particularly lauded for his dramatic and off beat choreographies and has been invited by several dance companies to participate in collaborative work. He has also taken up diverse commissioned projects in India and abroad and seen them to fruition. Kiran’s innate affinity to rhythm makes his work dramatic, vibrant and dynamic. Needless to say, his choreographies are greatly appreciated by connoisseurs and common audiences alike.
Kiran and Sandhya completed 25 years of dancing in the year 2010 and were honoured in a special felicitation programme “Bhava Sankramana” by ANANYA. The couple has also been featured in 2011’s edition of Attendance- India’s yearbook on Dance by noted Art historian Ashish Khokar. The Kirans were awarded the title “NRITYA NIPUNA” by the Karnataka Nritya Kala Parishath for their contribution to the field of Bharatanatyam. Sri Kiran Subramanyam recently received the ‘NATYANJALI PRASHASTHI’ for his contributions to the field of Bharatanayam by Sri Natyanjali Academy, Mangalore.
Most recently, Kiran and Sandhya have been awarded the KARNATAKA KALASHREE title, by the Karnataka Sangeetha Nritya Academy, Government of Karnataka for the year 2014, in recognition of their enormous contribution to the Arts.
Not content on resting on laurels earned Kiran looks ahead to a more enriching relationship with dance. Dance, to him today, is not just a medium of entertainment-it is a method of communication, of bonding and of creating new dimensions to living and learning.
Pasumarthy Venkateshwara Sarma
"Natyacharya" Pasumarthy Venkateswara Sarma originally belongs to the lineage of Kuchipudi exponents of Kuchipudi village of Andhra Pradesh. He was born to the couple Sri P.V. Chalapathi Sarma and Smt. Saraswathi in Kuchipudi Village. After completing his graduation in Commerce, he dedicated his fullest to the art form of Kuchipudi. He also obtained Diploma in Kuchipudi dance. Under the able tutorship of Sri Vedantam Radheshyam and Sri P.V.G.Krishna Sarma, he got induction in Kuchipudi Dance. Later on he received an extended training under the legendary Kuchipudi exponent Padmabhushan Dr. Vempati Chinna Satyam.
As an artist under the aegis of Sri P.V.G.Krishna Sarma, he has made his inaugural performances in the dance ballet `Parvathi Parinayam`. Siddendra Kalakshetram conducted this dance ballet in the year 1977. He has been playacting many solo dances comprising of Sabdas, Keertanas, Tarangam, Daruvulu, Padas, Astapadi, Javali, Tillana, Gopika Krishna, Sivatandavam, Bhamakalapam etc after the first performance in 1977. He has done various roles as a Yakshagana performer, in the groups conducted by Sri P.V.G.Krishna Sarma and late Sri Vedantam Prahlada Sarma. The roles, he has performed in various ballets are Tarakasura, in Parvathi Parinayam, Banasura, Siva and Parvathi in Ushaparinayam, Hiranyakasyapa in Prahalada and Sri Krishna in Bhamakalapam.
He has choreographed various popular ballets like Mahishasuramardhini, Keechakavadha, Varudhini Pravarakhya, Tulasi Jalandara, Vasavi Kanyaka Parameswari, Dakha Yagnam, and Tadhagatha. He has performed the roles Mahishasura, Keechaka, Pravarakhya, Jhalandara, Vishnuvardhana and Ghandharva, Ravanasura, Daksha, Mara & Angulimala respectively. He has also played different roles in the dance dramas that were choreographed by his guru Dr. Vempati Chinna Satyam. The role of Bhrugu Maharshi, Akasa Raju, & Chola Raju in `Srinivasa Kalyanam`; Daksha & Vatu in `Haravilasam`; Sisupala & Agni Jyotna in `Rukmini Kalyanam`; Sage Gowtama in `Ardhanareeswaram`; Sage Durvasa in `Sakuntalam` has been played by him.
As a choreographer, he has choreographed many ballets. The ballets choreographed by him are Parvathiparinayam (1985), Mahishasura Mardhini (1986), Daksha Yagnam (1987), Keechakavada (1987), Sati Tulasi (1988), Vasavi (1990), Varudhini Pravarakhya (1995), Tadhagatha (1998) Kundalakesi (1999), Ravana Garvabhangam (2003), Asta Lakshmi (2007). In those ballets, he has performed along with his students.
He toured Germany in the year 1992 and USA in the year 1998, in accompaniment of his Guru Padmabhushan Dr. Vempati Chinna Satyam, and staged several dance ballets. His performances have been well appreciated. He visited CANADA in the year 2006.
PV Sarma has been nominated by Department of Culture, Ministry of HRD (Government of India) as a `Senior Fellowship Awardee` for a period of two years (March, 2000 - March, 2002). This fellowship was given to him mainly to conduct research on `comparative study between Yakshagana and Nritya Natika`
Shama Krishna, hailing from Bangalore, is one of the foremost classical dancers of India. She has been trained in both Kuchipudi and Bharatanatyam dance styles and has given several performances in India and abroad. She began learning Bharathanatyam at a very young age from Guru Kalamandalam Smt Usha Datar and further received training from many senior Gurus like Guru Smt Narmada. She has been trained in Kuchipudi by Guru Smt Veena Murthy Vijay. She runs her own institution SHRADDHA DANCE CENTER, in Bangalore and has to her credit more than 150 students. She is an empanelled artist with ICCR and has received the national level scholarship from the Human Resource Department, Govt of India. She holds a Masters degree in Bharathanatyam from Sastra University, Tanjore and an A grade artist of Bangalore Doordarshan Kendra. She has been conferred with the Yuva Prathibha Award from BCKA last year.
Shama's quest for knowledge and dedication led her to Guru Smt. Sundari Santhanam, a direct disciple of Dr. Padma Subramanyam for an intense training in Karanas from the Natya Shastra. Shama has evolved as a consummate dancer by enhancing her dancing skills through workshops conducted by esteemed Gurus
At the age of 3 is when Dr.Rekha Raju's mother Jayalakshmi Raghavan decided to put her into the careful hands of Dance Guru Padmini Ramachandran to guide her in Bharatanatyam. The youngest of all in the whole class Rekha was involved in all the shows in just 6 months of her admission. She had a performance every week which marked her excellence in dance. Rekha mastered academics and dance together, taking a masters degree in business administration and a masters degree in performing arts simultaneously. A chartered accountant in the making Rekha, took up classical dancing as her full time career, Rekha founded her own dance institution Nrithya Dhama Temple of Fine Arts with a motive of training tridents of all cadre wether poor or rich from rural or from urban all students getting the knowledge of dance under the same roof. Though Bharatanatyam was the foundation of her dance career, she had started learning Mohiniattam too and it's Prof. A . Janardhanan who moulded her as a fine Mohiniattam danseuse and today Rekha is an exponent of Mohiniattam which many of the art critics have agreed to.
In Nrithya Dhama students get trained in Bharatanatyam,Mohiniattam, Carnatic vocals, Mridangam etc.more than 350 students have been trained in dance alone. She has students from different universities from the U.S and U.K who have come to India for a exchange programme and have been trained by Dr. Rekha. Rekha holds classes for house wives and working women and almost 20 of them are getting ready to their maiden performance this December.
With the completion of 10 years of establishment of Nrithya Dhama, 15 of Rekha's students have completed their arangettam, more than 100 have completed their Chelengai ( gejje) Pooja. 10 of them have been performing as solo artistes and performing all over India, they even have been appointed as faculties in Nrithya Dhama and other prestigious institutions.
Rekha has involved herself with various NGO's like Cristel House, St. Theresa home for children, Freedom Foundation all of these which help in the holistic development of children suffering from various disorders and poverty. Rekha encourages all art forms and as an responsible youngster she imparts knowledge of different arts forms to students. In this context she organises a cultural event every month at her dance studio which acts as an eye- opener into the world of arts.
As a young exponent of dance Rekha has a lot of achievements to her credits, like the doctoral degree, many awards and recognitions representing Mohiniattam at various universities inside and outside India
She has presented different ventures in Mohiniattam which has set a pavement into new dimensions in Mohiniattam like Meera , Laya Lasya , Poothana Moksham etc
Young talented Madhulita Mohapatra has carved a niche as one of the leading Odissi exponents in south India. She is admired & applauded by the connoisseurs & critics alike, for her profound artistry and her innate abhinaya quality. A graded artiste of Doordarshan (India’s national broadcaster) & recipient of the prestigious BCKA Yuva Kala Pratibha award, Madhulita Mohapatra has performed at several prestigious events across the country, like International Odissi Dance Festival, Konark Dance & Music Festival, Mukteswar Festival, Odissi International, rangTARANG National Choreography Festival, Bengaluru International Arts Festival, Mysore Dussera Festival, Prayaya Festival, KALA NADAM, Kinkini Nrithyotsava, Ananya Samarpana,Nadaneerjanam, among others. She is selflessly devoted to the promotion & popularisation of Odissi dance through her institution, Nrityantar, by performing, teaching and nurturing finest talents. Nrityantar Dance Ensemble is one of the most sought after classical dance troupes from Karnataka and is invited by all major art festivals.