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Bharatanatyam, is a classical Indian dance form that originated in the temples of Tamil Nadu. It was described in the treatise Natya Shastra by Bharata around the beginning of the common era. In ancient times it was performed as dasiattam by mandira (Hindu temple) Devadasis. Bharata Natyam is known for its grace, purity, tenderness, expression and sculpturesque poses. Lord Shiva is considered the God of this dance form. Today, it is one of the most popular and widely performed dance styles and is practiced by male and female dancers all over the world. The word Bharatnatyam combines "Bhavam" meaning expression, "ragam" meaning music, "thalam" meaning rhythm and natyam meaning dance.
The famous quartet of Chinnayya, Ponniah, Sivanandam and Vadivelu of the Tanjore Court during the Marathi King Saraboji’s time (1798–1824) made a rich contribution to music and Bharata Natyam and also completed the process of re-editing the Bharata Natyam programme into its present shape with its various forms like the Alarippu, Jathiswaram, Sabdham, Varnam, Tillana etc. The descendants of these four brothers formed the original stock of Nattuvanars or dance teachers of Bharata Natyam in Tanjore. The dance forms can be big or small.
There are 3 aspects to dance; Nritta, Nritya and Natya. Nritta is a pure dance without any emotions, expressions or sahityam. Nritya has sahityam (a sentence which means something). It has emotions, expressions and has a meaning shown by the hastas. Natya is when a person is portraying a character. There are 4 types of abhinaya in dance. They are
Anghika - Physical or body movements.
Vachika - the song being played, poetry
Aaharya - Ornamentation of a character/dancer e.g. jewellery, costume
Satvika - Involuntary movements e.g. trembling, break of voice, tears
The Students of Thalir Arts academy are given a highly professional training to the traditional Bharathanatyam dance in Pandanallur style. The Dance class includes both Theory and Practical class sessions with intermediate and graduation exams at various levels.…”
We bow to Him the benevolent One whose limbs are the world, whose song and poetry are the essence of all language, whose costume is the moon and the stars…”
Angikam Bhuvanam Yasya
Vachikam Sarva Vangmayam
Aaharyam Chandra Taradi
TamVande Sattvikam Shivam