December 2002
SAMUDRI's Archives & Library - Nalli Sponsors State-of-the-Art Reading Room. Dr.Nalli Kuppuswami Chetti, who has a well-deserved reputation as a generous and thoughtful patron of the performing arts, agreed to provide Rs.25 lakhs (twenty-five lakh rupees) towards the development of the infrastructure of the Subbulakshmi-Sadasivam Music & Dance Resources Institute (SAMUDRI) in Sirudavoor, near Mahabalipuram. Specifically, he is sponsoring the Archives & Library Division's Reading Room, which will be a state-of-the-art facility equipped with television sets, tape recorders, VCD & DVD players, video decks, computers and other appropriate accessories. Recently, he handed a Letter of Commitment to the Director General of SAMUDRI; Anita Ratnam, member of the Sruti Foundation's trust board with special responsibility for SAMUDRI, shared the precious moment. SAMUDRI is a wing of the Sruti Foundation which seeks to promote excellence, preserve traditions of value and encourage innovation on Indian music and dance and which publishes Sruti, the prestigious monthly magazine in English with a worldwide readership. For further information, please contact S Janaki. Phone: (91 - 44) - 4993822. E-mail: sruti@eth.net.

The Nungambakkam Cultural Academy celebrated its 33rd anniversary with its annual festival commencing from December 5, 2002 at the Rama Rao Kala Mandap, Chennai. Bharatanatyam guru K J Sarasa received the title of KALA SIROMANI.

Manjula Lusti Narasimhan received the VANI KALA SUDHAKARA AWARD conferred by Sri Thyaga Brahma Gana Sabha during its 23rd Isai Iyal Nataka Vizha on the inaugural day 9th December 2002.

The 2-day Kathak festival PUNDIT LACCHU MAHARAJ SMRITI SAMAROH took place at Bharat Bhavan, Bhopal on December 10 & 11, 2002. It was organised jointly by Ustad Allaudin Khan Sangeet Academy, Bharat Bhavan and South Central Cultural Zone, Nagpur.

The Ananda Shankar Foundation was launched on the 60th birthday of the late choreographer/musician on December 11, 2002 in Calcutta, with a scholarship from Airtel. Tanushree Shankar is the chairperson of the foundation. Initially, the scholarship will benefit modern dance students of the Ananda Shankar Performing Centre, to be extended later on to other students of the modern dance syllabi. The Ananda Shankar Scholarship promises an outstanding performer, all monetary support towards creating something individually, with a chance to go abroad and study at a renowned dance school.


Kapila Vatsyayan inaugurated the 47th Art and Pongal Dance Festival and the 22nd Natya Kala Conference of the Sri Krishna Gana Sabha. The title NRITYA CHOODAMANI was conferred on Bharatanatyam exponent Priyadarshini Govind, and ACHARYA CHOODAMANI on Guru Udupi Lakshminarayanan on December 12, 2002 at Dr.Nalli's Gana Vihar, Chennai. The Natya Kala Conference convened by Leela Samson took place from December 15 to 21, 2002.

The Bharat Kalachar, Chennai, conferred the titles of YUVA KALA BHARATHI on December 13, 2002 on Bharatanatyam dancers L Narendra Kumar, Sheejith Krishna, Preethi Athreya, Priya Dixit, Bhargavi Gopalan and Vaishnavi Rajagopalan. The VISHWA KALA BHARATHI award went to Dubai based Natarajan for his invaluable contribution in keeping the Bhagavatamela tradition alive, KALA SEVA BHARATHI award to V R Devika for her service in the field of dance and theatre. Special honors were conferred on Gopi for lights and sound, D S Aiyellu for costumes and Sethumadhavan for makeup.

On December 18, 2002, the inaugural day of the 70th South Indian Music and Dance Festival organized by the Indian Fine Arts Society, Chennai, dancer Saroja Vaidyanathan was conferred the title of NATYA KALASIKHAMANI and singer K J Jesudas received the title of SANGEETHA KALASIKHAMANI.

The 28th annual art festival of Kartik Fine Arts was held from December 1 - 25, 2002. Bharatanatyam dancer Priya Murle received the title NADANA MAMANI on 1st December. Convened by Sudharani Raghupathy and Chitra Visweswaran, a seminar on dance called Natya Darshan was held from December 20 - 22.

On December 22, 2002 at the Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan, Chennai, The Sruti Foundation presented its E KRISHNA IYER MEDAL to Bharatanatyam guru Prof. U S Krishna Rao in recognition of his and his late wife Chandrabhaga Devi's contribution to the preservation and promotion of Bharatanatyam traditions. Guru Krishna Rao completed 90 years of age on December 31.

On December 30, 2002, the Kannada and Culture Dept and the Karnataka Nrityakala Parishad honored Bharatanatyam guru U S Krishna Rao at Nayana Auditorium, Kannada Bhavan in Bangalore.

The Music Academy of Chennai celebrated its Platinum Jubilee with a Dance & Music Festival inaugurated by Dr. A P J Abdul Kalam, President of India. Sonal Mansingh who danced 'Nayika' in Odissi style gave the only non-Bharatnatyam program. All the choreographies and compositions were by her. The Music Academy honored Sonal Mansingh with the AWARD FOR BEST PERFORMANCE OF THE SEASON.

To promote theatre activities and give it a platform in Bangalore, the garden city of India, the theatre fraternity led by Arundati Nag has worked hard to build a dream theater project RANGA SHANKARA in the memory of Shankar Nag. About half of the support that has already been raised for this dream project costing around Rs. 3 crores, has come from various sources. Actress Shabana Azmi donated Rs.10 lakhs from her Rajya Sabha MP's fund, stage personality Rohini Hattangady came down to Bangalore to act in a play to create awareness about the project. There was a recent book reading session by Javed Akhtar and Shabana of Javed's poems. The Jindals donated the cement for the entire construction. Girish Karnad, Chairman of the trust and veteran theatre personality M S Sathyu are other ardent supporters. The Chief Minister of Karnataka S M Krishna has sanctioned Rs.50 lakhs for the project. Like the Prithvi Theater of Mumbai, Ranga Shankara will be built and managed by people connected with theatre.
November 2002
Bangalore based Bharatanatyam dancer Sridar received the RAJYOTSAVA AWARD on November 1, 2002. The award carried a 20g gold medal, a memento, shawl and a citation.

Vasundhara Doraswamy from Mysore presented a solo 2-hour Bharatanatyam recital at the United Nations Auditorium in Paris on November 14, 2002. The only artist invited from India, she presented SHOWPIECE OF INDIA at the World Forum of UNESCO Chairs, in the presence of 2500 delegates including ministers, ambassadors and eminent personalities from the world over. Vasundhara was accompanied by Varija Nalige, Paul George Samuel, Susheel Kumar Mavila, H S Tandava Murthy and Ravi Shankar Misra.
October 2002
Nalanda Nritya Kala Mahavidyalaya celebrated the completion of thirty years on October 1, 2002 at Kanaka Sabha, Mumbai. Sharad Pawar inaugurated the festival PARANGATA SAMAROHA that took place from 1- 6 October.

Sreelatha Vinod, senior disciple of the Dhananjayans and one of the leading young Bharatanatyam dancers, received the (for 2002-03) YUVA- KALAARATNAM from Kaladarpana, a very popular art magazine published from Cochin on 2nd October 2002, celebrated as Artists Day in Kerala.

The 5th JIWAN PANI MEMORIAL FESTIVAL 2002, organised annually by Sonal Mansingh in memory of her friend and mentor, took place at the India International Centre, New Delhi on October 4 and 5, 2002.


The Dhananjayans received the prestigious DR. RAJA SIR ANNAMALAI CHETTIAR AWARD for excellence in Fine Arts for the year 2002. Rs.50, 000/- cash prize, a silver plaque and citation were presented on 12th October, 2002 at Raja Annamalai Hall in a special function. Dr. L P Kr. Ramanathan Chettiar and Dr. Prathap Reddy of Apollo Hospitals were the other luminaries to receive the award along with The Dhananjayans.

Kalanidhi Fine Arts with the support of York University's Faulty of Fine Arts hosted a BHARATANATYAM FESTIVAL AND SYMPOSIUM from October 18 - 20, 2002 at Toronto, Canada. A large cross section of senior, junior and emerging dancers, choreographers and teachers invited from Ontario, Quebec, British Columbia and USA presented a variety of both traditional solo and group choreographic works evoking a sense of contemporary creativity based on tradition. The symposium involved workshops, lec/dems and panel discussions.

Kathak Kendra, New Delhi celebrated KATHAK EKAL UTSAV from October 25 to 27, 2002 in memory of Acharya Sukhdev Maharaj.
September 2002
Narada Gana Sabha Trust's Natyarangam presented its annual thematic Bharatanatyam festival Rasa Bharatham at Sathguru Gnanananda Hall from 29th August to 3rd September 2002. Bharatanatyam guru K J Sarasa was honored on August 29, 2002 and Chitra Visweswaran felicitated her. Dance musician S Rajeswari received the Sudharani Endowment Award; Mohiniattam dancer Indira Kadambi received the Obul Reddy Endowment Award for a Senior Dancer; and Bharatanatyam dancer Vijay Madhavan received the Vasanthalakshmi - Narasimhachari Endowment Award for Talent Promotion.

After a break of 6 years, the Swami Haridas Music and Dance Festival at Lucknow has been revived on September 13, 2002.

The VIMLA DEVI FOUNDATION AWARD was given to Sonal Mansingh by the Maharaja of Mewar at Ayodhya on 22nd September 2002 followed by her performance.

Ratikanta, son of Odissi guru Kelucharan Mohapatra and his cousin Banamali Maharana are forming an institute, the Mardala Academy to establish Pakhawaj as a solo instrument. Ratikanta is also documenting his father's dance and style to preserve it for posterity by recording his interviews of people who have worked with his father. He has already talked to more than 200 people.
August 2002
On August 4, 2002 the Sri Thyagaraja Trust of Tirupati conferred the award of SAPTHAGIRI SANGEETHA VIDWANMANI on vidwan Madurai N Krishnan and K J Yesudas (vocal) and Shoba Naidu (dance).

WORLD DANCE ALLIANCE (WDA) CONFERENCE took place from 21st -31st August 2002 at Düsseldorf, Germany. From India, Sunil Kothari and Sonal Mansingh attended the conference. Dr Kothari, who is the Vice President of WDA Asia Pacific Chapter, presented a paper with illustrations on the Indigenous Culture as reflected in Dance. Sonal Mansingh gave a workshop in Odissi during the conference.

Dr. Nalli Kuppuswami Chetti, who has a well-deserved reputation as a generous and thoughtful patron of the performing arts, agreed to provide Rs.25 lakhs (twenty-five lakh rupees) towards the development of the infrastructure of the Subbulakshmi-Sadasivam Music & Dance Resources Institute (SAMUDRI) in Sirudavoor, near Mahabalipuram. Specifically, the sponsorship was for the Archives & Library Division's Reading Room, which will be a state-of-the-art facility equipped with television sets, tape recorders, VCD & DVD players, video decks, computers and other appropriate accessories.

Ratna Kumar was nominated to the Texas Women's Hall of Fame. She received a Special Certificate of Appreciation from Rick Perry, Governor of Texas, for her contribution to the growth of the arts in Texas.

Kathak dancer, choreographer and dance scholar Kumudini Lakhia , Director of Kadamb Centre for Dance and Music, Ahmedabad was awarded the prestigious KALIDAS SANMAN by the Madhya Pradesh Government . This award is presented to artists for their outstanding contribution and achievement in the field of dance and music.
Kumudini Lakhia has been associated with the dance scene for more than 50 years. She has been responsible for enriching the vocabulary of the Kathak dance technique by a contemporary and visionary approach. Her work as a choreographer has been acclaimed not only in India but also appreciated by dancers, choreographers and connoisseurs around the world.

On August 31, 2002 the Shanmukhananda Fine Arts and Sangeeta Sabha in Mumbai celebrated 50 years as a national institute of fine arts. Lok Sabha speaker Manohar Joshi presided over the golden jubilee function. The auditorium, which was destroyed by fire on February 28, 1990, has been redesigned and renovated and has a seating capacity of nearly 2800. The Chief Postmaster General, R Ganesan, released a first day postal cover. As part of the celebrations, the sabha has instituted a "National Eminence Award" (prize money of Rs. 1 lakh, a silver lamp, a citation and a bronze icon of Lord Shanmukha), three "Shanmukha Shree Awards" carrying a prize money of Rs.25, 000 each. The sabha has been granted permission by Mumbai University to start degree courses at its Sangeeta Vidyalaya.
July 2002
DEAF WAY is an international festival of the arts designed by Galludet to showcase the creative energies of young, hearing impaired people from around the world. The prestigious event located in Washington DC, attracts huge attention in the US and draws hundreds of entries from deaf performing groups from around the world. The DEAF WAY II Conference, Arts Festival and Artists' Symposium 2002 took place between July 8 and 14, 2002. Astad Deboo was selected from more than 200 international entries to present his work with The Action Players, a highly skilled deaf performing company from Calcutta and a deaf Bharatanatyam dancer Karthika from Chennai's Clarke School for the Deaf.

Sri Vaishnavi Theatres, a cultural organization, honored Kuchipudi exponent Bhagavatula Sethuram with the PRATIBHA PURASKAR at a ceremony held on July 5, 2002 at Thyagaya Gana Sabha, Hyderabad. He received the award from C N Gopinatha Reddy, IG Special Protection Force. Sethuram is assistant professor in dance at the Potti Sreeramulu Telugu University and hails from a family of Kuchipudi dancers from Kuchipudi village.

In the Pracheen Kala Kendra, a center for learning classical arts, in Chandigarh, the female members of the clerical staff who are interested in dance, learn different streams of classical dance from their boss and guru Madan Lal Koser. The idea is to teach classical dance to interested employees within office hours. The lessons are taught at a mutually convenient time and within a month, the 5 ladies find an improvement in their expressions and movements as well as feeling fresh and vitalized through the day.
June 2002

Hyderabad based Bharatanatyam and Kuchipudi dancer Alekhya Punjala was awarded the HAMSA AWARD 2002 by Government of Andhra Pradesh at a ceremony held on the 14th of June 2002 at Ravindra Bharathi, Hyderabad for excellence in dance form and contribution to the dance field. The award was presented by His Excellency Mr. Rama Rao, Governor of Karnataka.


Five non-resident Indians were awarded the ORDER OF THE BRITISH EMPIRE on the Queen's birthday on June 15, 2002. Among them, Piali Ray, Director of Sampad, UK, was honored for her contribution to the arts.

As the founder secretary of Shankarabharam Trust, Mr.M Venkatakrishnan provided not only a platform but also a sizeable audience in his efforts to bring new dance talents to the public awareness. THE VENKATAKRISHNAN MEMORIAL AWARD has been instituted by Ramaa Bharadvaj, Artistic Director of Angahara Dance Ensemble, California, and administered by the Sruti Foundation, Chennai, to honor presenters who have promoted upcoming artistes throughout his / her lifetime. To be given every two years, the first award was presented to Mr.Yagnaraman, Secretary of Sri Krishna Sabha, Chennai, on June 30, 2002 at Dr.Nalli's Gana Vihar. The function coincided with Mr.Yagnaraman completing 81 years of age.

Padma Chebrolu, Artistic Director of Cultural Centre of India, has been elected to the Board of OhioDance organization. Padma will serve for three years in this position. OhioDance is supported by Ohio Arts Council, a state sponsored agency that supports public programs in the arts. OhioDance is an inclusive umbrella for information sharing, education, cooperation building, and increased visibility for dance in the state of Ohio. This is an honor and recognition to Cultural Centre of India and everyone who volunteers in this organization. Padma holds double Masters degrees and a degree in Bharatanatyam and works as a Systems Architect at major corporation. She lives with her husband and daughter in Cincinnati, Ohio.

Master bronze craftsman S Rajan has been commissioned to make a 20' tall bronze statue of Lord Nataraja for the London Museum. It is the first time such a large statue is being created and is estimated to take 2 years to complete.
May 2002
The South Zone Cultural Centre in Thanjavur has taken up documentation of vanishing art forms. Therukkoothu and Kittappa style Bharatanatyam in Tamilnadu; Beesukasali, Karapalamela, Kindari, Jogi and puppetry of Karnataka; Kannan Peruvannan of Kerala; Veedhi Natakam of Andhra Pradesh; Chowra pottery and martial arts of the Andaman & Nicobar islands are being documented. Troupes from Gujarat, Andhra Pradesh, Orissa, Punjab and Tamilnadu participated in a 2 day festival 'Salangai Nadham' in the Thanjavur Palace complex on May 1, 2002..


Sonal Mansingh was felicitated on 1st May 2002 at India Habitat Center, New Delhi, on her 59th birthday for completing 40 years of dancing. On this occasion, a documentary film on her titled SONAL, directed by Prakash Jha was released. The Chief Guests on the occasion were H.E. Shri R Venkataraman, Former President of India, Hon'ble Union Ministers Shri Jagmohan and Smt. Sushma Swaraj.

Veteran dance critic and musicologist P V Subramanyam or Subbudu as he is popularly known, was felicitated at a special function organized by www.artindia.net, for his lifetime contribution to the world of dance and music on May 6, 2002 at the India Habitat Centre. Rama Vaidyanathan performed for some of Subbudu's compositions.

Savita Godbole, disciple of guru Lachhu Maharaj, the great Kathak doyen of Lucknow gharana, was honored with the Uttar Pradesh Sangeet Natak Akademi award by the Uttar Pradesh govt. for her contribution in the field of Kathak dance. She was awarded cash of Rs.10, 000 and a citation in May.

The inauguration of the FIRST EUROPEAN EXHIBITION ON BHARATANTYAM at the Ethnographic Museum of Geneva for which Manjula Lusti-Narasimhan was curator, took place on May 7, 2002. The exhibition was open to public from May 7th - Nov. 17th, 2002.

From May 17, 2002, the first batch of 50 traffic cops started their training in Bharatanatyam from Padma Subrahmanyam. They were selected based on their interest and personality. Maybe the policemen will use 'traffic mudras' soon in Chennai!

Master Adarsh, a tiny tot of 6 years, studying in Nehru Niketan E M School Nellore, in 1st standard, crawled his way up by participating in various Government programs conducted by the Nellore district administration and the Govt. of Andhra Pradesh for increasing literacy and social awareness among the people dwelling in rural and urban areas. The various programs in which he participated are "Chaduvukundam", "Aksharadeepam", "Aksharasankranthi", "Aksharakolakalam", "Pachchadanam Parisubrahtha", Neeru-Meeru" etc… for which he received special prizes. And with the total amount of Rs.4000 that he received as prizes, he donated books and pencils to the poor through the M.P.D.O. of Vidavalur Mandal of Nellore district. He has also participated in the "Telugu Desam party Mahanadu" Cultural programs at Visakapatnam in May 2001 and received special mementos and appreciations from the Hon. Chief minister Mr. N Chandrababu Naidu.

Film maker Muzaffar Ali and Kabir Helminski, an American who is a California based preacher of Sufism, will collaborate on making a film on the life and poetry of the 13th century Anatolian mystic and poet Jallaludin Rumi after whom the Mevlevi sect of Sufism is named.
April 2002
Madras Telugu Academy presented its mega cultural program UGADI PURASKAR 2002 on Sunday, April 7th at the Music Academy. The Ugadi Puraskar award was conferred on 50 eminent personalities and child prodigies for their meritorious services in their respective fields and also Rs.6000 to students of 28 states and 7 Union territories.
Bharatanatyam dancer, teacher and writer Nandini Ramani received the UGADI PURASKAR 2002 AWARD in recognition of her work as Secretary of Samskrita Ranga, for directing and producing authentic Sanskrit plays on stage.
Under the category of Child Prodigies, Bharatanatyam and Kuchipudi dancer Sai Lakshmi Manasa of Vizianagaram, Bharatanatyam dancer Ramya Murali of PSBB School in Chennai were the two youngsters who received the award.

On Sunday April 7th, 2002, Indian dancer/choreographer Ramaa Bharadvaj became the recipient of the prestigious LESTER HORTON DANCE AWARDS at a glittery ceremony held at the Japan America Theater in Los Angeles. She won two awards that night, in the categories of 1) Outstanding Achievement in Choreography 2) Outstanding Achievement in Individual performance – Non-Western dance. The selection is done based on the votes received from members of the dance community. This is the highest dance honor in Los Angeles equal to the Oscars for actors.
The Lester Horton Dance Awards were established by the Dance Resource Center of Los Angeles 11 years ago to honor excellence in concert dance in Los Angeles, and has grown to become an important award cherished by the Los Angeles Dance Community. The evening also honored renowned choreographers Dr. Anthony Shay and Donald McKayle who received a special Lifetime Achievement Award from the California Arts Council.


Anita Ratnam, dancer, choreographer and cultural activist, was honoured with Developer's India's (An organisation for India's Development, Progress & Amity) VIBRANT INDIAN AWARD on April 9, 2002, at the Russian Cultural Centre, Chennai, for her unique contribution to the enrichment of Indian art and culture and harmonising with a vision of creativity.

The Karnataka Sangeetha Nruthya Academy, Bangalore selected 16 personalities who have excelled in various categories of Indian music and dance for the KARNATAKA KALASHRI AWARD for 2001. The Award distribution function was held at Kala Mandiram in Mysore on 16th & 17th April 2002. In the category of dance, Mandakini from Dhaarwad (Bharatanatyam), Vyjayanthi Kashi from Bangalore (Kuchipudi), A Nagaraja from Bangalore (Nrutya Mela-Violin) were honored.

Organized by the India Habitat Centre, the International Centre for Kathakali dispensed with the usual all male cast and presented NALACHARITAM DAY IV in the last week of April, with a women's only set of protagonists. Revathi Iyer was King Nala, Sudha Gopalakrishnan was Damayanthi and Lavanya Ranjeet was her companion Kesini.
March 2002
THE FAKIR OF BENARES, the first ever Indo-French opera premiered on March 1st.
Produced by Francis Wacziarg, it is about a group of dancers on the banks of the Ganges who are immersed in dancing. Unfortunately, the lead dancer (played by Kathak dancer Aditi Mangaldas), breaks her ankle. When she returns after her wound has healed, she dances in abandon. Meera Ali designed her costume.

For the first time since Sattriya dance was accorded the status of a classical dance form, it was featured in the Khajuraho Dance Festival on March 3, 2002 on the concluding day. The performance was by Guwahati based Sattriya Academy under the direction of Jatin Goswami.

In Kuala Lumpur, the Centre for Contemporary Culture of New Delhi, presented the second RUKMINI DEVI MEDAL FOR EXCELLENCE IN ARTS to Prof. C V Chandrasekhar on March 7, 2002 for his dedication to the cause of dance and for spreading the ideals of Rukmini Devi for the last four decades. Apart from his acceptance speech, Prof. Chandrasekhar also presented a Thillana. The exhibition RE-PRESENTING RUKMINI DEVI ARUNDALE by the Centre for Contemporary Culture was organized by the Indian High Commission at Sutra Dance Theater in Kuala Lumpur from March 7th to 17th, at Kulim (Malaysia) from March 22nd at Dyana Ashram, at Singapore from April 10th to 15th by Singapore Indian Fine Arts Society and Apsaras.

The Ladies Circle of Chennai honored 12 eminent women achievers on Women's Day on March 8th at the Hotel Le Royal Meridien. Chandralekha was chosen in the dance category and the award included a certificate of merit and a trophy given by the chief guest of the evening, Jayanthi Natarajan.

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 list of national awardees for distinguished service announced on January 26, 2002-
Padma Bhushan: Kathak exponent Sitara Devi. In her late seventies, she rejected the award on the ground that she will accept nothing less than a Bharat Ratna since even younger and lesser-known artistes were being awarded the Padma Vibhushan
Padma Shri: Manipuri exponent Darshana Jhaveri, Odissi exponent Kiran Sehgal, Sattriya dance exponent Pushpa Bhuyan, Bharatanatyam dancer Saroja Vaidyanathan.
President K R Narayanan gave away the Padma Shri awards to dancers Saroja Vaidyanathan and Kiran Sehgal at the Rashtrapathi Bhavan, New Delhi on March 23, 2002.

Darpana Academy in Ahmedabad sent 25 Harijan students to the US to present a dance performance choreographed by Mrinalini Sarabhai on the theme of non-violence and to enact the story of Gandhi. These children had hardly ever been even on bus rides in India.

The 702nd SRI SIDDHENDRA YOGI JAYANTHI MAHOTSAV was celebrated in Kuchipudi village from March 27 to 30, 2002. Organised by the Akhila Bharatiya Kuchipudi Natyakala Mandali, the artistes featured were Janna Danilenko of Russia (Bharatanatyam), Sri Hari and Chethena of Bangalore (Bharatanatyam and Kathak), Sowmya and Uday Kumar Shetty of Bangalore (Odissi), Sonali Acharya of Assam (Odissi), Banani Chakrabarthy of Calcutta (Gowdiya Nrithya). The usual 9-day festival was cut short to 4 days due to shortage of funds.

Mr. Himachal Som, director of the Indian Council for Cultural Relations and his wife were given a farewell at the India Habitat Centre in February. Mr.Som is now India's ambassador in Rome. The event was co-hosted by APPAN (Asia Pacific performing Arts Network) and Habitat Centre. The highlight of the evening was art journalists engaging in a hilarious skit conceived by Renuka Narayan with additional inputs by Rajiv Chandran and Shanta Serbjeet Singh.

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, was selected for this 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.
February 2002
Bharatanatyam guru Narmada of Shakuntala Nrityalaya, Bangalore, senior disciple of Guru Tanjavur Kittappa Pillai was given the KARNATAKA STATE SHANTHALA AWARD for 2001 in recognition of her service to dance. Minister of State for Kannada & Culture, Rani Satish made the announcement at a press conference on February 1, 2002. The award carried a cash prize of Rupees one lakh, a shawl, a memento and a citation.

THE 2ND ATTAKKALARI INTERNATIONAL FESTIVAL OF MOVEMENT ARTS was held from 3 – 10 February 2002 at the prestigious J. N. Tata Auditorium, Bangalore, presenting a range of cutting edge international and Indian dance companies. Pushing the frontiers in kinaesthetic expression in India, the 2nd Attakkalari International Festival of Movement Arts had on-stage performances as well as off-stage site-specific works. Making use of interesting architectural spaces and surrounding environment of J.N. Tata auditorium, the Festival featured installations with videos/slide projections and digital works as well as sonic arts.

Raja and Radha Reddy plan to start a full-fledged residential academy for Kuchipudi dance in Delhi's Saket area where they have been allotted some land. The institution will be modeled on the lines of a gurukul and foreign students would be welcome.

8 year old Vamshi Mogudala had achieved the status of a professional when he was just 4. He has trained in classical as well as western dance forms, his present Bharatanatyam guru being V S Ramamoorthy in Hyderabad. He is also good in story telling, mono acting and painting. A student of Hanuman Vyayam Public School, he has received many awards for his achievements, notably Madras Telugu Academy Award, Gifted Child Award, Little Star and Balak Kriti. He has also acted in a few films like 'Ganesh' with Venkatesh and Rambha, 'Pedda Manushalu' for Suresh Productions, 'Kuchi Kuchi Kunamma' and so on. In 1997, Vamshee went along with a group of stalwarts to Mauritius as a cultural ambassador on the occasion of the Golden Celebrations of India's independence.
("Twinkle Toes Vamshee" by Anshujita Sarangi, Deccan Chronicle, Hyderabad, Feb 5, 2002)

During Kalashram's Vasanthotsav from February 5 to 8, 2002, Birju Maharaj's book ANGKAVYA was released. It is an 86 page illustrated guide to Kathak and contains the master's photos by Avinash Pasricha. With notes by Saswathi Sen, the book has line drawing illustrations by Birju Maharaj himself.

Bharatanatyam dancer Malavika Sarukkai received the THIRD MRINALINI SARABHAI AWARD FOR EXCELLENCE IN CLASSICAL DANCE at Natarani theatre in Ahmedabad on February 10, 2002. She performed the story of Thimmaka and to celebrate her 30 years on stage as a performer, she presented Kashi Yatra, the journey of a courtesan at Siri Fort in Delhi in March.

Shanmugananda Sangeetha Sabha, one of the oldest organizations of Delhi, conferred the NATYA RATNA AWARD on Adyar K Lakshman on February 15, 2002 at Delhi. He received the SWAMI SRI GANAPATHI SACHIDANANDA AWARD from his disciple Rajeswari Sainath in the presence of other gurus and vidwans in Hyderabad on February 19, 2002.

Pranita Jain, founder and artistic director of the Chicago area based Kalapriya Dance was invited to perform at the Winter Olympics 2002 in Salt Lake City on February 10th at the Olympic Cultural Center in Washington Square. She performed Bharatanatyam, and Shoba Natarajan, founder and director of Samskriti performed Kuchipudi. Sumani Music, an organization founded by Shelly Kumar to promote Indian music and dance in the United States, commissioned their performance at the Winter Olympics.


Sukanya Rahman's memoirs Dancing in The Family - An Unconventional Memoir of Three Women, published by HarperCollins/India.was launched by sitar maestro Pandit Ravi Shankar on February 22, 2002 at New Delhi. Many luminaries from the world of Indian dance, music and the arts were present.

15 dancers from Natya Dance Theatre performed their Bharatanatyam production SHAKTI CHAKRA at the opening ceremonies of the 2002 Winter Olympics. They were personally invited by the Olympic Committee to perform. Krithika Rajagopalan is the theatre's executive director and lead company dancer.

Nambisan has been bestowed the award of RASHTRA GAURAV PURASKAR by Dathopasak Thayi Ghanekar Smrutimanch, Pune for his contribution to the field of Art & Culture to Maharashtra & the nation for the past 31 years. The conferring of the award was on 24th February 2002 at Bharat Ithihas Samyodhan Mandal, Pune by the President, Kulaguru - Dr. Madhusudhan P Ghanekar & Chief Guest - Great Poet Shri Ravindra Bhat. Among the 5 Maharashtrian Award Winners, Nambisan is the only South Indian.

From year 2002, the dates of the Khajuraho Dance Festival have been finalized as February 25th to March 3rd for the next five years in order to help international tourists to plan their visit to Khajuraho in advance.

Amrapali Ambegaokar was profiled on the cover of 002 magazine of Houston. Amrapali continued to tour as a principal Dancer in the role of Oceana for the Dralion of Cirque Du Soleil.
January 2002
On January 1, 2002 the Music Academy, Chennai, honored dancer Kamala Lakshman.

Guwahati based Kathak dancer Pranami Sarma, student of guru Bipul Das, won the gold medal at the 7th National Youth Festival, which took place from January 12th to 16th at Hissar in Haryana. She outshone 16 competitors from other states.

Rangshree Trust presented Rang Ratna Award Ceremony on January 25, 2002 at the Nehru Center. Awards were conferred on Thanjavur Pandit N. Viswanathan (Literature) and Guru Ganesh Hiralal (Kathak). Guru Shri Ganesh Hiralal, one of the greatest Kathak gurus of the Jaipur Gharana comes from a traditional family of scholars, who specialise in rare forms like Drupad Dhamar. He has groomed many dancers who have distinguished themselves in the field. He has traveled extensively in India and abroad as a performer. He has choreographed several significant works for the stage and the screen.
Pandit N Viswanathan, formerly Telegu Pandit of Thanjavur Shri Serfoji Maharaja Saraswathi Mahal Library of Thanjavur, has edited, translated and transcribed 15 books and is credited with over 150 papers in Tamil, Telugu, Sanskrit and Marathi. He is associated with Melattur Bhagavata Mela Natya Vidya Sangam, and is the spirit behind 'Sakuntala', the Marathi Bhagavata Mela that was performed on the 25th for the first time in 150 years.

Since 1986, Calcutta based ladies organization Marudhara aims at preserving and promoting the rich culture of Rajasthan. In January 2002, Kathak dancer Prerna Shrimali was honored with the BHUWALKA JANAKALYAN TRUST PRIZE in a colorful function at G D Birla Sabhagar.

Highlights - Yearwise listing