Internationally reputed dancer, choreographer, teacher, writer, academician and dance curator, Kathak Guru Dr. Maya Rao passed away in Bangalore around midnight of August 31, 2014. She was 86.  With her passing, a huge vacuum has been created in the world of dance and Kathak. The recently released book MAYA RAO: A LIFETIME IN CHOREOGRAPHY by Dr. Maya Rao published by Department of Kannada and Culture and the Karnataka Sahithya Academy is a valuable record of Indian classical dance and Kathak in particular. Her path breaking achievements suffused with personal reminiscences makes this memoir extremely readable and a significant chapter in the cultural history of India.

Her daughter Madhu Nataraj can be contacted at:

About Dr. Maya Rao

Change in where to apply for grants
Why classical dancers are upset with India's Ministry of Culture
- Nayantara Narayanan,, 11 Aug 2014

Angkor Wat, Cambodia
Photo: Usha RK
Anita says.....

Jambo!  A Swahili word for “Hello!”
Touching down from a magical ten days in Kenya and Tanzania, where connectivity was limited, animals were in abundance and sunsets were like paintings, I find it hard to wrench myself away from the African dream and revert to the here and now of urban life and the rhythm of the arts. After all, I had just witnessed the greatest show on earth – the annual migration of more than a  million wildebeests across the Mara River!
While boarding the evening flight out of India came the distressing news about the demise of my guru Adyar K Lakshman. Ailing for many months and a shadow of his once vibrant self, Lakshman Sir closed his eyes amidst an outpouring of sadness across the world from his many ‘sishyas’ and admirers. Among the early global gurus, he came into my life in 1965 when I had just completed my ‘arangetram’ under guru Rajee Narayan. Along with him came the magnificent musician Madurai Sethuraman, percussion wizard Trichur P.Ramanathan and musical genius Madurai N Krishnan. Those days of 3 hour classes at our rented home on Boag Road after a long day at school were an integral part of my growing years. As his principal muse, I was the physical medium for more than 30 new classical choreographic pieces that have now become popular in the BN repertoire across the world. There are many stories and incidents of his talent and humour but for this edition I share the memories as expressed by his colleagues and prominent students, Chandrabhanu and Ramli Ibrahim. His choreography and contribution to the modern ‘bhakti margam’ of Bharatanatyam is singular and should be preserved and propagated.

August was the month during which the Sangeet Natak Akademi saw the completion of the five year term for its executive committee members. I was honoured to be a part of this important cultural body and found the many key decisions taken during the tenure of Chairperson Leela Samson to be a critical lesson as to how we must find ways to engage with the government and official bodies for the arts. Apart from the many senior and emerging artistes who were honoured for their contributions, the SNA has been so vital for many revivals and preservations of several rare art forms. Here’s wishing the new incoming committee the very best for the next five years in which the role of the performing arts will become even more crucial for India’s image within and outside our borders.

Read more....


GEETA CHANDRAN as VINATA in 'Vara: A Blessing' by Khyentse Norbu, Bhutan’s first English feature film

Anita Ratnam & Arangham Trust presented Float & Padme
August 9, 2014 at NGMA, Bangalore
Photos: M Vivekanandan

Shriram Bharatiya Kala Kendra presented ‘Krishna’
August 16 to 18, 2014 at Kamani Auditorium, New Delhi
Photos: Shobha Deepak Singh

Maya - A Lifetime in Choreography - Book Launch, Bangalore
Photos: PeeVee Pv and Shandilya Srivatsa

Kathak through the Ages
August 8, 2014, Chowdiah Memorial Hall, Bangalore
Photos Courtesy: Natya & STEM Dance Kampni

Birthday wishes
Jitendra Maharaj (Kathak) - Sept 9
Kumkum Mohanty (Odissi) - Sept 10
Sai Venkatesh (lights) - Sept 10
Rajika Puri (Odissi, BN) - Sept 14
Alarmel Valli (BN) - Sept 14
Udupi Laxminarayan (BN guru) - Sept 17
Jhelum Paranjape (Odissi) - Sept 24
Ananda Shankar Jayant (BN, Kuchipudi) - Sept 27
Pick of the month
Multipurpose Basement 21 blog

An archive for our existing work  ;  Upcoming events/workshops/classes
Whatever few pieces of study material on contemporary art that we possess personally
Articles on art  ;  Reviews and Interviews
In the Upanishads, five signs of sat guru (true guru) are mentioned.
In the presence of the satguru; Knowledge flourishes (Gyana raksha); Sorrow diminishes (Dukha kshaya); Joy wells up without any reason (Sukha aavirbhava); Abundance dawns (Samriddhi); All talents manifest (Sarva samvardhan).

Sapphire Creations presents

Sept 8, 2014 New Delhi
Sept 10, 2014 Chandigarh
Sept 15 - 18, 2014 Kolkata

Art Vision presents 10th Sangam Festival, a confluence of dance
Sep 11, 2014 Bhubaneswar

Sonali Skandan & Jiva Dance premiere Mayura: Blue Peacock
Sep 18 - 20, 2014 NYC

Milapfest presents Sannidhi International conference for Indian Arts
Sep 30, Oct 1 & 2, 2014 Liverpool

Mandala Arts presents
Gait to the Spirit

Oct 31 - Nov 2, 2014 Vancouver

Adyar K. Lakshman: A beacon of Bharatanatyam
- Ramli Ibrahim

Homage to Guru Adyar K Lakshman (1933 - 2014)
- Chandrabhanu

Madhyama Segal’s Odissi recital
- Dr.Sunil Kothari

Rich, traditional and soulful - a treat by Krithika Rajagopalan
- Usha Raghavan

Antardrishti-Geetamritam, a neo-classical innovation in Odissi dance
- Nita Vidyarthi

Madhura Bhrushundi’s Bharatanatyam recital
 - Dr. Sunil Kothari

Weaving what’s torn: Asunder by the Courtyard Dancers
- Mytili Jagannathan

Bhakti Pravah
- Shveta Arora

Raining taal
- Shveta Arora

Nostalgia from Nrityagram

- Veejay Sai

Chitrangana: A welcome endeavor in Mohiniattam
- Supriya Rajan

Guru Debaprasad Das: Icon of Odissi
- Nita Vidyarthi

Telugu Traditions
- Tadepalli Satyanarayana

The role of the arts in developing sustainable inter-ethnic engagement in Malaysia
- Ramli Ibrahim

Vadya Pallavi: the concept and process
-  Parwati Dutta

Uma Dogra: Dancing is my first love
- Vijay Shanker

Guru B. Herambanathan

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