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Dance Of The Enchanteress

Wednesday, March 06, 2019
By Vijay Shanker

One of the most popular multi-arts festival which is organised every year in South Mumbai is the Kala Ghoda festival organised by Kala Ghoda Association. This festival is unique for it exposes varied art forms, folk and classical dances, and other performing art forms like music and drama and the visual arts too, which was attended by a large section of the population of Mumbai.

In the performing arts section, a presentation which was unique for its content and structural quality, the performance of Mohinattam entitled "Sringara - The Essence Mohinattam" was performed by renowned Mohinattam exponent Dr. Geeta Radha Krishna and her disciple Manjula Manoj for a select audience of the festival. The performance was scintillating for its structural and elegant lyrical concept based on the lasya style of dancing.

Dr. Geeta Radha Krishna is internationally acclaimed for her Mohinattam performances both in India and abroad and is credited for her two authoritative books on Mohinattam known as "Mohinattam adavus" and Mohinattam ‘The Dance Of The Enchanteress’. The performance commenced with an extract from Nritta Swara Manjari known as Kerala that exposes the dance of the "Aprasa Kerala" as described in the Natya Sastra, performed with precise and graceful movements by Manjula Manoj.

As a tribute to the pioneer and veteran mentor of Mohinattam Kalamandalam Kalyani Kutty Amma Geeta performed her beautiful romantic composition "Varika Varika Sakhi" that exposes the predominant emotion of Sringara and its varied aspects pertaining to the love relation of the heroine and her lord. Besides Manjula's "Sarala" performance, the highlight of the program was the enaction of twenty four mudras from Hasta lakshana Deepika which is a poem written by Geeta exploring the gestural and philosophical aspect of Mohinattam. On the whole it was an entertaining and informative program.

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