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Lifestyle Books and Art 11 Jul 2017 New approach within ...

New approach within tradition

DECCAN CHRONICLE. | JAYWANT NAIDU
Published Jul 11, 2017, 12:55 am IST
Updated Jul 11, 2017, 12:55 am IST
Vempati Ravishankar talks about his concerns for the present generation of Kuchipudi dancers.
Taking the legacy forward: Students of Vempati Ravishankar left everyone enthralled
 Taking the legacy forward: Students of Vempati Ravishankar left everyone enthralled

The International Dance Research and Training Centre (IDRTC) organised an evening of Kuchipudi dance, Vempati Nartanam, showcasing the dance choreographies of Vempati Pedda Satyam, Vempati Chinna Satyam and Vempati Ravishankar, at Ravindra Bharati. Says Ravishankar, “I am from the tenth generation of the illustrious Vempati family that has worked towards spreading awareness on Kuchipudi worldwide. My uncle, Pedda Satyam, came to Chennai in around 1940 to work in Telugu films, by using the medium of Kuchipudi. In those days, there were hardly any opportunities in terms of stage performances. Films were livelihood. My father, Chinna Satyam, came to Chennai at 18 and went on to establish Kuchipudi Art Academy. He created nearly 17 popular dance drama productions that are performed even today. My approach to the dance form is  different. I work towards creating new movements within the Natya Shastra — a modern outlook within the tradition.”

Praveen, a student, says Praveen, “I found interest in this form, which is very close to tradition.” Karnam Srinivas completed his Diploma in Kuchipudi from the Government Music and Dance College in Nizamabad and now learns from Ravishankar. “I saw the dance drama based on the Sri Tyagaraja Pancharatna Kriti, Jagadananda Karaka, in 2010 at Hyderabad. The performance by students and Nattuvangam by Master garu made me decide that this was the right place for me to pursue my career,” he recalls. Ravishankar feels there are few areas, that are a cause for concern.” There are hardly any career oriented avenues for male dancers. Students are in a hurry to get fame. The youngsters should understand the need to learn properly and move to success. Festival organisers should consult gurus and identify young talent for providing them with opportunities. A lot of hard work goes into creating dance dramas and it’s disheartening to see audience leave halfway.”

 

Meanwhile, Tadepalli Sharma, Director IDRTC, shares that plans are underway for a national seminar on all recognised dance forms, where a discussion on the changes that occur in the forms over time, will be discussed.

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