UDVIGNA 2021 (Many Dances – One Emotion)

Yamini Reddy, Gopika Varma, Vyjayanthi Kashi, Perini Sandeep Enthral Audience

The three-day National Dance Festival UDVIGNA 2021 got off to a rousing start at the Ravindra Bharathi on Sunday 19th December 2021. The Festival was inaugurated by the Chief Guest Dr. V Srinivas Goud, Hon’ble Minister for Prohibition & Excise, Sports, Youth Services, Tourism, Culture and Archaeology. Also, present on the dais on the day of the inauguration were Padma Bhushan awardee Dr. Raja Reddy & Padma Bhushan Awardee Dr. Radha Reddy, Prof. T Kishan Rao, Vice Chancellor, Potti Sreeramuu Telugu University. 

The evening’s programme started with a dance performance by Yamini Reddy, daughter of Padma Bhushan Dr. Raja Radha Reddy. The recipient of the Devadasi National award and the Sangeet Natak Akademi Bismillah Khan Yuva Purasakar, and the Pride of Telangana ‘Achievers Award’ presented ‘Shiva Panchakshari’ an Invocatory Item and concluded with ‘Rasa Sabdam’, a Tarangam by Utthukaad Venkata Subhayaar. Yamini Reddy successfully runs the Natya Tarangini Hyderabad branch and trains numerous students. In her presentation, one could see her father’s Tandava and mother’s Lasya.

The second performance of the evening was by Chennai-based Smt. Gopika Varma, a leading exponent and performing artist of Mohiniyattam for four decades. Gopika Varma, a top graded artist of Doordarshan, ICCR empanelled artist, Kendra Sageet Natak Academy Awardee, First Mohiniyattam dancer to receive Kalaimamai award from Govt of Tamil Nadu, Kalasree award from Govt of Kerala, Nrithya Choodamani from Krishna Gana Sabha won the hearts of the Rasikas at her performance in the twin cities. There is no doubt in saying that Mohiniyattam dancer Gopika Varma’s dance is marked by extreme grace and fluidity of movement. Her Abhinaya touches the soul and elevates the Rasika to observe peace and bliss. In Hyderabad, Gopika Varma along with her troupe presented ‘Chithranga’, as Invocatory followed by ‘Pankajaksha Kadaivaran’, ‘Bhaja Govindam’ and ‘Jeeva’.

Bangalore-based Vyjayanthi Kashi, who is counted as one of India’s most respected classical dancers, and trains numerous students through the Shambhavi School of Dance floored the audience with her presentations in the Leelas from Bhagavatham. Honoured with the Central Sangeet Natak Akademi, Karnataka State Rajyothsav Award, Kala Shree, Nrithya Choodamani Award, Vyjayanthi Kashi and Shambhavi Dance Ensemble presented ‘Paramapurusha’, Vishnu symbolizes all that is beautiful and the beauty in all. Paramapurusha is an expression of that beauty brought forth through a series of episodes or Leelas from the life of Lord Vishnu and his various Avataras. All the compositions presented were choreographed by Vyjayanthi Kashi. The dancers who performed included Vyjayanthi Kashi, Prateeksha Kashi, Diksha Shankar, Neha P, Abhigna, Shivani, Hima Vyshnavi and Gururaju.

The final performance of the evening was by Hyderabad-based Perini Sandeep, of Sri Manidweepa Arts Academy who presented the State Art form Perini in its true royal regale. He presented three items, the first one being helmed by Central Sangeet Natak Akademi Awardee Guru Kala Krishna Garu’s ‘Sri Ganapati Kaivaryam’, followed by Late Padma Shri awardee Guru Nataraja Ramakrishna garu’s ‘Prithvi Linga’, and the finale performance was the ‘Jugalbandi – Tandavam & Lasyam’ – which was a hit with the audience and also made them tap their feet to the beats. Speaking exclusively to Natyahasini, Perini Sandeep shares that he was fortunate to share the stage with stalwarts, who have been bestowed with honours like Central Sangeet Natak Akademi awards, Padma Bhushan and Padma Shri. 

Head onto the next page for Day 2 and 3 reviews

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