Odissi dance institute, Dancing Dolls celebrated their fifth Annual Day at Shilparamam Madhapur on Saturday last. Despite classes being held online because of the pandemic, the students of Dancing Dolls presented the dance recital with lot of enthusiasm and energy. The evening’s performance began with Mangalacharan, a Guru Vandana, Kadaschit Kalindi Thata Bipina, a devotional hymn composed by Adi Shankaracharya in praise of Lord Jagannath.
The students then performed Shiva Tandava, sloka in praise of God of dance, Lord Shiva, choreographed by Guru Debaprasad Das. In this dance piece, the dancer exhibited the Tandavam (vigorous movements), and one can gauge the sensitive facial expression with emphasis on swastika bhava. This was followed by Slokabhinaya, where the dance began with paying homage to Lord Ganesha, simple and steady movements were set to Lakhya Sindoora Vadana Slokam.
Next was Sthayee, a steady refrain of rhythmic syllables was used throughout. The dance began with a series of sculpturesque poses depicting such actions as the playing of a Veena (Lute), Mardala or Pakhawaj (double sided Drum), Karatala (Cymbals) and Venu (Flute), that brings out the inter-relationships between this dance and the dance sculptures adorning the temples of Odisha. These poses were stringed together to create abstract sequence. The accompanying refrain is in the form of one line of Ukuta (Bole) and as this is recited in the Taal (Rhythmic pattern), different Arasas -patterns are improvised and are executed with the postures and movements.
In Saberi Pallavi, another abstract dance sequence where a Raag is elaborated, the dancers exhibited simple eye movements, body postures & isolated movements. In a composition of Guru Kelucharan Mohapatra, the dance and music evolve in complexity as the dancer traces multiple patterns in space, interpreting the music dexterously in the multi-layered dimensions of taal (rhythm) and laya (speed).
in the second segment, students performed a concept by expressing it through Odissi vocabulary. Life Goes On was inspired by the pandemic that hit India last year. The dance sequence begins with an English Cover of a popular song, Life Goes On, by the boy-band BTS. The cover is sung by Ysabelle Cuevas. In this sequence, dancers interpreted the poetry through lyrical expressions using gestures and simple movements. This performance was followed by excerpts of verses from the Bhagwat Geeta, where the dancers articulated the narratives through simple postures and movements. The programme ended with a performance on the song ” Be free” a mashup by Vidya Vox and Vandana Iyer.