In the form of the Lord of Dance,
Shiva is known as Nataraj and is worshipped by all
Classical Indian dancers.
Guru Prakash Yadagudde
This is a picture of Guru Shri Prakash Yadagudde.
He won 2 scholarships from his native
train further in New Delhi and Madras under U.S.
Krishna Rao. He has also trained with Chitra
He has taught over 20 students to Arangetram level and
has been teaching in Bhartiya Vidya Bhavan for approx.
15 years. I have had the honour
of seeing him dance twice. He is, without a doubt,
my favourite dancer.
You may not think that male dancers take to Classical
Indian dance styles, but in fact there are many top-notch
classical Indian dancers who are male:
A few examples are the late Uday Shankar, Birju Maharaj and Pratap Pawar (Kathak),
Ram Gopal, U.S. Krishna Rao, V.P. Dhananjayan,
Raghunath Manet, Mavin Khoo and Dr. Francis Barboza
Raja Reddy (Kuchipudi), Kalamandalam Gopi (Kathakali),
Rajkumar Singhajit Singh (Manipuri), Kelucharan Mohapatra (Odissi).
Francis Barboza and his troupe
Dr. Barboza, a Catholic Indian has introduced a
hasta (hand gesture) to represent Christ
Odissi dance of Orissa
Surupa Sen in a striking Odissi pose.
Bijayini Sathpathy, an Odissi exponent. Surupa and
Bijayini have both learnt Odissi at Nrityagram (located
in the outskirts of Bangalore), founded by the late
Protima Gauri Bedi.
Rasleela: Thounaojam Lalitkanta as Krishna and Moirangthem Noopur as Radha.
These two young dancers are descendents of great Manipuri
A doll dressed up in Manipuri dance costume. Yes she's
a Barbie doll and I hate Barbie dolls, but I am
partial to this Barbie as she's sporting a dance costume!
Kathak from Northern India.
Kathak originates from the word Kathakar,
meaning "story-teller". These story tellers in ancient
India would relate the mythological tales of Gods using
mime, dance and music.
The dancers were traditionally
men and women who performed within the vicinity of the
With the invasion of the Mughals (Muslim ruler)
in the 1400s and onwards, the dance was brought into
the courts of the rulers. Thus the traditional instruments,
such as the pakhawaj (drum) were replaced by the table, and the
traditional Hindu ghaagra-choli-odhini dress
was ousted in favour of the churidar-pyjama-angharka costume.
Kathak has several schools, Jaipuri, Lucknowi, Delhi, Benares and
Rayagarhi, of which the first two are the most popular
in modern times.
Kuchipudi of Andhra Pradesh.
Anila, Nilimmi Devi's daughter in a Kuchipudi pose.
Mohini Attam of Kerala.
Mohini Attam is danced only by women. Mohini (the form of a
beautiful dancer that was taken by Lord Vishnu) danced
so beautifully in "The Churning of
the Ocean" that she distracted the asuras (demons) and
thus ensured that the devas (Gods) got the Amrit.
Narasimhachari sisters in an abhinaya pose
of Bharata Natyam dance.
The deities at the Meenakshiamman temple
at Madurai, India.