Artists across the two Telugu speaking states have lost a friend and well-wisher in the passing away of veteran art critic Gudipoodi Srihari early this week. He had written reviews about the work of the artists in many newspapers including ‘The Hindu’ and ‘Eenadu’. Also, ran a popular satirical column ‘Harivillu’ for 25 years and was news broadcaster on All India Radio. Natyahasini speaks to a couple of city dancers, who pay their heartfelt tributes to the writer and critic.
I was privileged to meet Gudipoodi Srihari garu during my first choreography production ‘Rutu Sobha’. He spoke to me for an hour mentoring me as on how to do a production and gave me valuable advice which helped me in all my future endeavours. He was a great support to me always coming to our Muvva performances and his Friday Reviews were a great source of inspiration to me. A jovial person and a gentle personality, he spoke to my students in a sweet way encouraging them to work hard in dance. My last meeting with him was during my production ‘Sujala Sravanthi’ and he was very happy to see our performance and blessed me. His Friday Review on that performance will always remain special to me. We lost a good soul, but we hope that he continues to bless us from the divine abode. ~Himabindu Kanoj
I met him during the Nritya Sammelanam program along with Ranee Kumar (colleague of Gudipoodi Srihari Garu), very Genuine Critic I have ever seen, very humble person, he didn’t like special treatment in a program that is his greatness. He wrote three articles about me and mentioned each time about my abhinaya, rasa, pada everything clearly. He encouraged me to develop skilled dancing. Once I was doing Bhamakalapam (only Pravesha Daruvu), he clearly absorbed and mentioned about Bhama Jeda which was not clearly demarcated (actually I didn’t demarcate properly too). He used to say that Aharayabhinaya is also very important for a dancer. ~Ravi Kuchipudi
Natyaswara founder Anna Rao garu introduced me to G Srihari garu. I am blessed to have shared a few moments in my career with Gudipoodi Srihari garu. He was a very generous person who encouraged us during our initial stages of the Academy. After I started my dance academy, he was a mentor and guide and helped me to perform and take my dance academy to the next level. It was like meeting a family when we went to his house to invite him for the programmes. The couple would greet us well and treat me as a family member. The vacuum created in my life can never be compensated. My heartfelt condolences to his family. ~Rama Devi Nalla
It was a shocking to hear the demise of Gudupoodi Srihari garu. He was well-known for his works as a newsreader, writer and critic. He acquired immense knowledge in music and dance as well. Criticism with a sense of humour and respectability are rare, because of which many dancers flourished on their journey with his suggestions and advice. Film industry as well as the artists are going to miss his works, it’s a great loss to all of us. ~Sneha Ramchander
He was the one who gave correct feedback about any artist in a film or during dance performances. Doesn’t matter whether artist is legend or just upcoming. He was bold enough to criticise as well as praise. I am lucky to have an article written by him for one of our performances during 2018. ~Jyothi Reddy