December 2001
Kartik Fine Arts honored Bharatanatyam artiste Rama Vaidyanathan and Kuchipudi artiste Uma Muralikrishna with the title 'NADANAMAMANI' on December 1, 2001 at the start of their 27th Art Festival at Sathguru Gnanananda Hall in Chennai. The award carries a citation, a gold medal and cash of Rs.15, 000. Madurai N Krishnan was conferred the title of 'TAMIL ISAI VENDER' on December 26 at the inauguration of the Tamil Isai Festival at Valliammal College for Women, Anna Nagar. The award carries a citation, a silver tanpura and cash Rs.15, 000.

Bharatanatyam exponent Srekala Bharath received the NRITYA KALA SHIROMANI award from the Nungambakkam Cultural Academy Trust on December 6, 2001 when the Sabha inaugurated its 32nd anniversary celebrations in a month long festival.

The Sri Krishna Gana Sabha conferred the prestigious Nritya Choodamani Award on Bharatanatyam dancer Urmila Sathyanarayana on December 12, 2001 at the newly remodeled Dr.Nalli's Gana Vihar, Chennai.

The 75th annual conference of the Music Academy commenced on 14th December 2001. Nirmala Ramachandran received the TTK Award.

The Indian Fine Arts Society conferred the title of NATYA KALA SIKHAMANI on Bharatanatyam guru K J Sarasa on December 18, 2001 at the Balamandir German Hall, T Nagar, Chennai.

The Bharat Kalachar awards for 2001: YUVA KALA BHARATI AWARD to Lavanya Shankar, Aruna Subbiah, Sarayu Sai and Adith Narayanan (Bharatanatyam and nattuvangam), Sailaja (Kuchipudi) and Gopika Varma (Mohiniattam).

An International Odissi Festival SHARDHANJALI, a tribute to Guru Deba Prasad Das was held in New Delhi, the cultural capital of India, from December 17-19, 2001 at India Habitat Centre, under the auspices of Bansi Bilas, a Bhubaneshwar-based foundation, supported by Sangeet Natak Akademi, as well as HCL and many Oriya businesses.

86 year old octogenarian Kathakali artiste Keezhpadam Kumaran Nair, whose innovative classicism lent a new dimension to the 400 year old dance drama of Kerala, has been selected for the year's KATHAKALI PURASKARAM by the state government. This is in recognition of his efforts to popularize the art form in India and abroad. The award carries a citation and a plaque.

Arunima Kumar received the SUR SRINGARA MANI title for the year 2001.

A two day national seminar on ODISSI NRUTYA DHARA 2000 was organised by Kala Vikash Kendra, a premier college of Indian dance and music in Cuttack. For the first time Odissi dance gurus and exponents agreed to formulate a uniform code for the dance to revive and enrich its unique style and to check its aberration. This much-awaited code should have been ready before the annual conference held in Cuttack in December 2001.

To promote Kuchipudi, Shanta Rati Mishra has just set up an art foundation called Antara, with a group of people drawn from the different fields of Indian arts. Antara is meant not only for promoting Indian classical dance forms, but also to promote drawings, music and crafts traditional to India.

Anjani Ambegaokar was awarded the James Irvine Foundation DanceMaker grant of $10,000 to create the new work of 'Sakuntalam' in classical Kathak style, (of 89 applications, 10 Dance Makers were selected). She has also received the fellowship from Traditional and folk arts grants and from California Arts Council traditional arts grant for the 'Sakuntalam' project. Anjani will start with the research, choreography and production starting December 2001.

The West Bengal govt has allocated some land to the Dancers Guild at Salt Lake City, Calcutta, where it plans to set up Mrittika that will make available traditional and contemporary dance movements from India and around the world to students from different backgrounds. Once the construction is complete, Mrittika will house the Dancers Guild and the Navanritya cult.

Bharatanatyam guru Saroja Vaidyanathan was honored with an award from the Sanskar Bharati for her excellence as a Bharatanatyam exponent and as author of several books. The Indira University of Music, Khairagarh, has accorded her institution Ganesha Natyalaya, the status of a college.

Britain's Millenium Commission has granted 522,000 £ to the Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan, UK as part of its 1.35 million £ project to have a 'millennium plus building' including a new art gallery, archives, classrooms and better all round facilities. The Bhavan is the largest Indian cultural institute in the U.K. and is dedicated to the furtherance of knowledge and awareness of Indian arts and culture. Mr. Maneck Dalal announced that in addition, the arts council has granted 150,000 £ for refurbishment of Bhavan's Mountbatten Hall.

The Union Tourism and Culture Minister Jagmohan has sanctioned Rupees One crore for setting up the Uday Shankar Center for Dance and Music in the picturesque Almora region in Uttaranchal. The government will also develop Almora as a heritage site. It was at Simtola, 11km from Almora that Uday Shankar had set up a dance and music center in the 1940's. The center was closed in 1944 but Uday Shankar's house is still there and the proposed center will be set up in it.

The SANGEET NATAK AKADEMI AWARDS list for 1999 and 2000 were finalized by the general council of the Akademi at its meeting in Guwahati on November 14, 2000. Dancers who received the award - K Kalyanasundaram Pillai, Leela Samson and H R Keshavamurthy (Bharatanatyam), Shovana Narayan (Kathak), Swapnasundari (Kuchipudi), Nelliyodu Vasudevan Namboodiri ( Kathakali), Sorokhaibam Narau Singh (Manipuri), Minati Mishra and Madhavi Mudgal (Odissi), Bharati Shivaji (Mohiniattam), Parmanand Barbayan (Sattriya) and Mallika Sarabhai (creative dance). The veteran R K Dhingra (lighting), Kahal Ghosh (theatre music) and Robin Das (scenic design) have been recognized for other theatrical aspects. B V K Sastry, Nemi Chand Jain and Shanta Serbjeet Singh have been chosen for their overall contribution to performing arts.

The Sangeet Natak Akademi, in its general council meeting in Mumbai, has decided to confer the SANGEET NATAK AKADEMI AWARD-2001 on 25 other artistes, said Dr. Hazarika, Chairman of the Akademi. Some of the awardees are Alarmel Valli, Prathibha Prahlad, Charu Sija Mathur, Ghana Kant Bora, Gul Bardhan (for dance), Dolly Ahluwalia (for theatre), Hiren Bhattacharya (for folk dance forms), Suresh Awasthi (for performing art) and Prem Matiyani (performing arts in the media).

In December 2001, K Shilpa of Hyderabad presented an evening where she danced items from the 4 classical styles of Bharatanatyam, Kuchipudi, Odissi and Kathak in quick succession in the same evening. She felicitated the 4 gurus of the four dance forms: V S Ramamoorthy for Bharatanatyam, Seshu Babu for Kuchipudi, Shukla Dasgupta for Odissi and Sanjay Joshi for Kathak. Apart from dancing, Shilpa can also skate, ride horses, swim and paint. She was awarded the WONDER GIRL 2001 AWARD by C Narayan Reddy and presented with a crown and shawl by the Honorable Home Minister T Devender Goud in Hyderabad.


IMAYAMUDHAM, a forthcoming 52 part series about the life and times of famous playback singer T M Soundararajan will feature Anita Ratnam in a few episodes. Anita's father Mr. Ratnam and TMS were college mates in Madurai.

Bharatanatyam dancer Geeta Chandran received Giants International's GAURAV AWARD from Union Law Minister Arun Jaitley for her contribution to dance and music on 30th December at the Talkatora Stadium, New Delhi.
November 2001
Dancers Prathibha Prahad and Bhanumati were given the RAJYOTSAVA AWARD by the State Government of Karnataka. They were among the 55 awardees. The Chief Minister Mr. S M Krishna felicitated them at Bangalore on November 1, 2001 with a gold medal, a citation and a shawl.

The Rotary Club of Meenambakkam, Chennai conferred "For The Sake of Honor Award" on Mr. Yagnaraman, Secretary of Sri Krishna Gana Sabha on November 7, 2001 at Hotel Savera.

Rathna Kumar, Artistic Director of Samskriti, Society for Indian Performing Arts, has been selected as a Panelist for Dance Programs by the prestigious National Endowment for the Arts, Washington, D.C. Rathna has also been elected as a member of the International Dance Council of the UNESCO, and presented a lecture/demonstration at its Conference on "Dance and Oral History" in Ioannina, Greece, Nov.10, 2001.

Bharatanatyam exponent Yamini Krishnamurthy received the KALIDAS AWARD for the year 2001- 02 at a function held in Bhopal in November. The award instituted by the Madhya Pradesh Government comprised a citation and Rs.1.50 lakhs in cash.
October 2001
Kaladarpana, a prestigious and popular Kerala Art magazine (Malayalam) has conferred on V P Dhananjayan the coveted award KALA-SRESHTA after an opinion poll taken among many artists, connoisseurs and readers of the magazine. This title and citation were conferred on him on 2nd October in Ernakulam (Cochin). Hon. Minister for Art & Culture G Kartikeyan presented the award and K J Yesudas presided over the function, celebrated as "ARTISTS DAY" (Kalaakaara dinam). The famed Koodiyattam Acharya Sri Ammanur Madhava Chakyar was conferred the honour of KALA-KULAPATHI. Shanta and Dhananjayan were also honoured as the best dancing couple of India. This was a separate honour instituted by the Magazine. The celebrated Artist M.V. Devan is the chief Editor of Kaladarpanam.

Guru Maya Rao, the internationally renowned Kathak danseuse and choreographer was awarded the title of NATYA KALA RATNA by Gayana Samaja. Mr. S.M. Krishna, Honourable chief minister of Karnataka presided over the ceremony held at the Gayana Samaja, K.R. Road, Bangalore on the 7th of October 2001.
September 2001
Vijay Tendulkar received the Katha Chudamani Award– a lifetime literary achievement award from Mahasveta Devi at a ceremony held on 3 September 2001 at 5 pm at the Main Auditorium, India Habitat Centre, New Delhi. Instituted by organization Katha, the award carries with it a citation, a cash award of Rs.51, 000 and publication, in English translation, of as many of an awardee's significant works, as possible.

Theatre professionals Dipankar Mukherjee and Meena Natarajan were awarded MN INTERNATIONAL CITIZEN AWARD 2001 on September 25, 2001 at Minneapolis Marriott City Center for creating a theatre that truly sees "all the world as a stage". Along with others, they founded Pangea World Theater in 1995. Their work has been honored nationally and internationally and has resulted in much collaboration with international artistes and theater directors and several international humanitarian and artistic organizations.

Three classical dancers from the US were presented the ARTS INDIA AWARD in recognition of their contribution in the inter - cultural context, by the Chennai based Sruti Foundation. The recipients were Nala Najan (Roberto Rivero), Matteo (Mathew Marcellus Vittuchi) and Bhaskar Roy Chowdhury. The award included a citation, a Thanjavur plate and a shawl, which were presented by N Pattabhiraman, managing trustee of Sruti Foundation at a function in New York on September 26, 2001 and privately a day earlier to Nala Najan.
August 2001
Vyjayanthimala Bali was invited to be Grand Marshall by the Federation of Indo-American Associations of North California, which under the auspices of the Festival of India celebrated Indian Independence Day on August 11 and 12, 2001. The Festival Committee honored her with a Lifetime Achievement Award in Silicon Valley.

The success of the recent mother - daughter dancing duos presented by Bharat Kalachar in the JANANI PUTHRI NRITYOTSAV in Chennai has prompted the organization to make it an annual event.

M. T Vasudevan Nair, writer, is the new chairman of the Kerala Kalamandalam. Adoor Gopalakrishnan, film-maker, heads the Chalachitra Akademi. The appointments of new heads of various Akademies and institutions under the Department of Culture were announced by the Minister of Culture, Mr. G.Karthikeyan, at Thiruvananthapuram on August 14th. N. P. Mohammed was named the chairman of the Kerala Sahitya Akademi, and Kavalam Narayana Panicker the chairman of the Kerala Sangeetha Nataka Akademi. Kanayi Kunhiraman heads the Lalitha Kala Akademi as its chairman. He said the Department of Culture would not be drawing up a new policy, as culture does not change with changing Government. What is good from the current policies would be continued and changes would be effected where they are needed, he added.

Odissi dancer Aruna Mohanty was awarded the SANJUKTA PANIGRAHI NATIONAL AWARD at the 55th birth anniversary celebrations of the great dancer at a function in Bhubaneswar on August 23, 2001. Governor M M Rajendran presented the award.

DADABHAI NAOROJI INTERNATIONAL AWARD was presented to Uttara Asha Coorlawala for Excellence and Life-Time Achievement in Dance by Dadabhai Naoroji Centenary Committee 2001 during the Death Anniversary Celebration of Dadabhai Naoroji and Seminar at the Ball Room, Taj Mahal Hotel, Mumbai on 25th August 2001.
July 2001
Gandharva Mahavidyalaya, New Delhi organized in collaboration with Srjan, Bhuvaneswar, a festival PRADAKSHINA to honour 75 years of Guru Kelucharan Mohapatra on July 5 and 6, 2001. The late Bhubaneswar Misra had composed many musical scores choreographed by Kelucharan Mohapatra. His wife was honored on the occasion. 85-year-old Durlabchandra Singh, veteran Director of Kalindicharan Patnaik's Orissa Theater was also honored. His moral and practical support not only had an important impact on the development of Kelubabu's career and consequently of Odissi, he was also responsible for providing a core of Drupad bols adapted to the Odissi Bani by Kelucharan Mohapatra.

Recognizing her contribution in the field of dance, Gujarat State Sangeet Natak Akademi has conferred their award for dance for the year 2000-2001 on Bharatanatyam and Mohiniattam exponent Rema Shrikant. The award was presented to her by the Governor of Gujarat State on 7th July 2001 in Rajkot.


On the occasion of the 80th birth anniversary of the legendary dance guru late K N Dandayudhapani Pillai, at a function in New Delhi organized by Natyakalalayam, dancers Yamini Krishnamurthy and Geeta Chandran were honored with the DANDAYUDHAPANI PILLAI AWARD for their contribution to Bharatanatyam on July 13, 2001.

The UNESCO Director General Koichiro Matsuura honored Masters of Koodiyattam on 24 July 2001 in Delhi. Kutiyattam, the Sanskrit theatre tradition of Kerala has been proclaimed as "Masterpiece of the Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity by UNESCO. It is for the first time that select art forms have been given this recognition as part of its effort to safeguard expressions of oral heritage and traditional culture, which are in danger of disappearing due to the effects of globalisation. UNESCO has until now only recognized built heritage such as monuments, sites of exceptional value and landscape as part of heritage.

Trivandrum based arts presenter Soorya Krishnamoorthy was invited to South Africa by the African government and the African National Congress to direct a specially choreographed program for Nelson Mandela's birthday on 22nd July 2001 at Durban, South Africa. He presented a program titled UNITY IN DIVERSITY with 350 African artistes belonging to four different races - whites, blacks, coloured and Indians - paying tribute to Mahatma Gandhi and Nelson Mandela. They were all brought to one rhythm to dance together in the backdrop of Indian music with lines from the Vedas and other similar pieces. This is a great honor for a foreigner to be invited to present this program which is also their National Day.

July 31, 2001 Oakland, CA:
Dance Magazine Joins the Macfadden Communications Group Dance Magazine, the leading publication in the field of dance for almost seventy-five years, has announced its acquisition by The Macfadden Communications Group, a multimedia magazine, internet and exposition company.
According to Macfadden Communications Group President and CEO, Jeffrey Schaeffer, "The acquisition of Dance Magazine and her sister publications, Dance Magazine's College Guide and Stern's Directory, is a marvelous opportunity for our company to work with a very talented, knowledgeable group of journalists and administrators. Their obvious devotion to the advancement of dance is the key ingredient for taking this remarkable group of publications to an even higher level of excellence and service. It is rare, indeed, when you can acquire publications of such enormous stature and esteem. Rest assured we will make a major effort to build upon this superb platform." Robert Stern, CEO, and Roslyne Paige Stern, President of Dance Magazine, Inc. said, "We are very pleased that the legacy of Dance Magazine will continue."
Dance Magazine will continue to publish out of its Oakland, California office and maintain additional offices in New York City. Editor in chief K.C. Patrick, and Publisher Barbara Paige Kaplan said, "We look forward to tapping into Macfadden's market and production knowledge and working with a team whose mission is to be uncompromising about quality and excellence in every aspect of what they do."
June 2001
82-year-old Amala Shankar, widow of Uday Shankar, has decided to set up a dance university in his honor. The Rupees ten crore-project set up with the assistance of Sri Satya Saibaba was opened in June 2001 in Puttaparthi, Andhra Pradesh. A total of 230 instruments used by Uday Shankar along with some rare letters he received which includes one from Mahatma Gandhi, will be kept in the university.

Uma Rama Rao and Lasya Priya, an institution founded by her in 1985 for promotion of Indian classical dance traditions, launched ISHANA SAMHITA, a project aimed at promoting the various facets of spiritual and cultural heritage through multimedia, on June 10, 2001at Ravindra Bharati in Hyderabad. The program was inaugurated by Janapith awardee C Narayana Reddy, N Gopi - Vice Chancellor of Potti Sreeramulu Telugu University. Uma Rama Rao is on the panel of experts to chalk out the syllabus for 'distance coaching' in Kuchipudi. The Potti Sreeramulu Telugu University panel is considering 2 categories of students – foreigners, especially Americans and NRI's of Indian origin. The whole course will be offered on the Internet.

Speaking in Bangalore at the convocation of 17 vocational courses like Sanskrit, Urdu, classical music and dance courses conducted by the Karnataka Secondary Education Examination Board, the Primary and Secondary Education Minister H Viswanath stated on June 7, 2001 that The Karnataka State Government will consider introducing classical dance and music courses at the pre-university level and beyond.

The Natya STEM Dance Ensemble is a collaborative effort of the Natya Institute of Kathak and Choreography and the STEM Dance Theatre. It was born out of a need to showcase both the traditional Indian classical / folk dance idiom and the evolving contemporary Indian dance form. By using their indigenous physical disciplines, the Natya STEM Dance Ensemble's performing unit has a varied and comprehensive repertoire, which includes Kathak, Dances of India, and ballets on mythological, historical and contemporary themes.
May 2001
Raghunath Manet was honored by the French Ministry of Culture with the prestigious title of "Chevalier des Arts et des Lettres" (Knight of the Order of Arts and Letters) on May 2, 2001 at the Indian Embassy in Paris. Mr.Michel Duffour presented the medal of Chevalier to Manet.

Thiruvananthapuram born Mohinattam dancer Neena Prasad is the first South Indian to receive a PhD in Dance from Rabindra Bharati University. The degree was conferred on her on May 7, 2001 at the university's convocation. Her topic of research was 'Lasya and Tandava in South Indian classical dance'.

Australia based Mohiniattam and Kathakali dancer / teacher Tara Rajkumar was awarded the ROLL OF HONOR OF WOMEN on May 7, 2001 at a special Centenary Federation celebrations organized at Parliament House in Melbourne. She is one of the 250 Australian women who have made a significant contribution in shaping the country between 1829 to 2001.

Senior dancer M V Narasimhachari continues to be President of ABHAI - Association of Bharatanatyam Dancers of India. Dancer Srekala Bharat is the new Secretary. The Vice Presidents are K S Subramanian of Natyarangam and dancer Jayanthi Subramaniam. The Joint Secretaries are Parvati Ravi Ghantasala, Roja Kannan and Sailaja and S Sivakumar, the treasurer. The new set of office bearers was decided at the Annual General Body Meeting on May 26, 2001.

California based Kathak dancer Anjani Ambegaokar has been invited by Cirque Du Soleil as a consultant choreographer for their DRALION production where her daughter Amrapali is performing the role of Oceana. The production is in New York at present on their US tour. This will be the first time that the Cirque du Soleil has officially invited an Indian classical dance choreographer for their production.

DANCE ADVANCE – 2001 PROJECT AWARDS for the 2001 – 2002 season was announced on May 28, 2001 at Philadelphia. Sruti, the India Music and Dance Society was awarded a one year grant in the amount of $7000 to support a performance by Bharatanatyam dancer Priyadarshini Govind along with a live orchestra. The project also included marketing efforts to broaden Sruti's audiences in the Philadelphia region.

The American Dance Festival which chooses from hundreds of choreographers for its choreographers' residency chose Surupa Sen as one of the candidates for this year's intense workshops in May and June 2001. Here, choreographers are given one of the best interacting opportunities in the world.
April 2001
With effect from April 20, 2001, the new Principal of Rukmini Devi College of Fine Arts, Kalakshetra, Foundation, Chennai, is Prof. A Janardhanan.
January 2001
Eminent Kuchipudi dance guru Vempati Chinna Satyam, theater personality B. V. Karanth and Carnatic musician M Balamurali Krishna were elected Fellows of the Sangeet Natak Akademi for their contributions in the respective fields. Chairman of the Akademi, Dr. Bhupen Hazarika, said Mr. Satyam, Mr. Karanth and Dr. Balamurali have been honored as Fellows for promoting and propagating Indian culture in the fields of drama, music and dance.

The KELI PROMISING ARTIST OF THE YEAR 2000 Award was given to Vijayalakshmi, daughter of Bharati Shivaji during the 4-day event, which was part of the Prithvi Festival in the last week of January 2001. This was followed by a formal release of a book in Malayalam, a compilation of the academic contribution of 10 senior most gurus of classical art forms. The book was compiled and edited by Kalamandalam V Kaladharan and the English version was released later during the same festival. Keli is a Mumbai based organisation.

Sudharani Ragupathy was honoured with the title NATYA KALA SIKHAMANI by the Indian Fine Arts Society, during their 68th South Indian Music Conference and Festival. She received the title on January 3, 2001.

On Sunday 25 March 2001, Akademi - South Asian Dance in the UK won the Arts category of the BBC ASIA AWARD FOR COMING OF AGE. Mira Kaushik and Keith Khan accepted the award at the ceremony in Birmingham.
Highlights - Yearwise listing