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Author: kkm

Samanya Abhinaya And Chitrabhinaya

The term ‘Abhinaya’ is usually interpreted as ‘acting’. According to Bharata, in the Natyasastra, this is incorrect, for ‘Abhi’ means ‘towards’ and ‘ni’ means ‘to carry’. This denotes the meaning of the play or act which is carried towards the audience. Therefore, the words (vachika), with physical gestures (angika) to suit the emotion (sattva), along […]

Bhanudatta’s “Rasamanjari”- An exploration of the Nayikas and Nayakas

Bhanudatta is the most famous Sanskrit poet – certainly the most famous Sanskrit poet of early modern India. Bhanudatta was from Vidéha (today’s Northern Bihar), a member of the highly learned Máithili Brahmin community, and the son of a poet named Ganéshvara (or Ganapati). No other Sanskrit poet exercised anything remotely approaching Bhanudatta’s influence on […]

Cultural Significance of Indian Mythology in Dance

Indian culture is a tapestry woven with threads of ancient traditions, rich history, and vibrant mythology. Among the many art forms that celebrate this cultural heritage, dance stands out as a captivating medium. Indian mythology, a treasure trove of stories, gods, and goddesses, plays a pivotal role in shaping the narrative of traditional Indian dance […]


Vrittis mean to ‘behave’ or the ‘wielding’ of various emotions and sentiments, as discussed in chapter twenty two of the classical text “Natya Shastra”. Hence, essentially Vrittis are modes of expression. In the context of drama, the use of a specific type of vritti includes different styles of theatrical presentation, the perfect execution of actions, […]

Nritta, Nritya and Natya

Based on the mode of performance and usage, dance can be broadly classified under three main heads such as Nritta, Nritya and Natya. Nritta: Nritta means pure dance, a presentation of rhythm through graceful movement of the body. It always reflects the mood, Bhava and Rasa underlying the compositions sung for dance. It is important […]

Dasha Tala Pranas

Introduction “hastadvayasya sanyoge viyogecaapi vartate vyaaptimaan yo dashapraanaihi sa kaalastaalasajnakaha” Process of union and separation of the two hands in accordance with the 10 elements of musical time is called taala. Taala is any rhythmic beat or strike that measures musical time. This rhythmic beat is not arbitrary but in fact it is governed by […]

Importance of Iconography and Mythology For Dancers

Icons are objects through which worship is offered to God. Hence, Iconography means a detailed description of Icons. It is the classification or identification of an image according to what is seen and understood from the outwardly appearance. Iconology, on the other hand, literally means “the science of icons”. It also identifies and studies the […]


As we celebrate Krishna Janamashthami, the birthday of Lord Krishna, let us reflect upon the philosophy which was propagated by him through his dialogue with the Pandav prince Arjun as his guide and charioteer, also known as ‘Bhagwat Geeta’. In the Bhagavatgeeta Lord Krishna says अहमात्मा गुडाकेश सर्वभूताशयस्थितः। अहमादिश्च मध्यं च भूतानामन्त एव च।। I […]

The Significance of ‘pranas’ in Bharatnatyam

Any good exposition of Bharatnatyam is dependent not only on the talent, commitment and skill of the dancer, but also on other equally significant factors as well. These are known as the “Pranas”. The word “Prana” literally means “life” and Bharatnatyam, if is devoid of these “pranas” would automatically become dull and lifeless. Pranas can […]