December 2011

Gopalkrishna Gandhi, former West Bengal Governor, has been appointed as Chairman of the Kalakshetra Foundation, Chennai.

The 4TH BHARAT MUNI SAMMAN was conferred by Kalingayana Touryatrikam on eminent theatre personality Ratan Thiyam on December 17, 2011 at Rabindra Mandap, Bhubaneswar. SJ Prafulla Samal, Minister for tourism and culture, Govt of Odisha attended as the chief guest.

On December 17, 2011 the Indian Fine Arts Society conferred NATYAKALA SIKHAMANI on gurus Narasimhachari and Vasantalakshmi at Balamandir German Hall, Chennai.


Chennai based VELS UNIVERSITY conferred a D. Litt Honorary Doctorate Degree on Bharatanatyam guru VP Dhananjayan on December 14, 2011. Former President Dr. Abdul Kalam will be the chief guest on the second convocation of the University when Dhananjayan receives the honour.


The Mylapore Fine Arts Club, Chennai, conferred NRITHYA KALA NIPUNA on Bharatanatyam guru Adyar K Lakshman on December 11, 2011 on the inaugural day of its annual festival.


One of the young pioneers who were Fellows at the INK Conference this December 8 – 11, 2011 in Jaipur was dancer Charles Ma, who was initiated into Bharatanatyam by guru Vidya Shimladka. Charles is also a contemporary choreographer and teacher.

Attendance annual honours 2011 were given on December 10, 2011 at a function in Bangalore.

The RAM GOPAL AWARD for best male dancer to Ramli Ibrahim, the MOHAN KHOKAR AWARD for overall excellence to Madhu Nataraj, and the UDAY SHANKAR AWARD for choreography to Murali Mohan Kalva. Maestro L Subramaniam, Chief Sect. Mr. Chiranjiv Singh and Aruna Sundarlal did the honours.

The MUDHRA AWARD OF EXCELLENCE (instituted in memory of the late Gnanamba and P Obul Reddy) was presented to Gurus VP Dhananjayan and Shanta Dhananjayan on December 9, during the inauguration of Mudhra’s 16th Fine Arts Festival, Chennai.

At its 32nd annual music festival, Sri Thyaga Brahma Gana Sabha conferred VANI KALA SUDHAKARA on Guru Kalanidhi Narayanan on the inaugural day of December 9, 2011 at Mahaswami Auditorium, Chennai.

Bharatanatyam dancer Roja Kannan received the ACHARYA CHOODAMANI award from Krishna Gana Sabha on December 9, 2011. The award carries a gold medal and a purse of Rupees one lakh. NRITYA CHOODAMANI was conferred on Odissi dancers Surupa Sen and Bijayini Satpathy. The award carries a purse of Rupees two lakhs each, a gold medal and a citation. The DURGALAL ENDOWMENT PRIZE was awarded to Kathak dancers Nirupama and Rajendra.

On December 8, 2011 at the 42nd anniversary celebrations of the Nungambakkam Cultural Academy Trust and the inauguration of the annual Fine Arts Festival, Bharatanatyam dancer Parvathi Ravi Ghantasala was conferred the NRITHYA KALASIROMANI, at Rama Rao Mantap, Chennai.


On December 6, 2011 Mayuri Upadhya, Artistic Director of Bangalore based Nritarutya - Indian Contemporary Dance Trust won the Bronze Prize for India at the International Competition of Choreography Plan held in Seoul, with Gold Prize going to Idit Herman (Israel) and Silver Prize to Martinus Miroto (Indonesia).

On December 3, 2011, Brahma Gana Sabha conferred NATYA PADMAM on dancer Lakshmi Viswanathan at Sivagami Pethachi Auditorium, Chennai.


Bharatanatyam dancer Janaki Rangarajan received the NADANAMAMANI award from Kartik Fine Arts on December 1, 2011 at Narada Gana Sabha auditorium, Chennai. Shruthipriya was conferred with NATYACHUDAR on December 23, 2011 at Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan on the inaugural morning of the Natya Darshan seminar.

November 2011

Bharat Kalachar awards for 2011 were given away on November 27, 2011 at Chennai.
VISWA KALA BHARATI: Alarmel Valli, Malavika Sarukkai; ACHARYA KALA BHARATI: Anitha Guha; NRITHYA KALA BHARATI: Meenakshi Chittaranjan, Priyadarsini Govind, Shobana, Urmila Sathyanarayanan, J Suryanarayanamurthy; YUVA KALA BHARATI: Deepika Potarazu, Revathy Kumar, Navia Natarajan, Aishwarya N Balasubramanian, Ritwika Ghosh.

On November 27, 2011 on the occasion of 24th annual day of ABHAI, NATYA KALANIDHI AWARD was conferred on Bharatanatyam guru MK Saroja by Prabha Sridevan, USHA SRINIVASAN ENDOWMENT AWARD and GAANDHARVA NIPUNA on violinist TK Padmanabhan, NIRMALA RAMACHANDRAN ENDOWMENT AWARD on Binesh Mahadevan by composer Deva, Chairman of Tamilnadu Iyal Isai Nataka Mandram, at Narada Gana Sabha, Chennai.

The Rotary Club of Delhi presented Raja and Radha Reddy with the LIFETIME ACHIEVEMENT AWARD for vocational excellence in the field of Kuchipudi dance on November 24, 2011 at Delhi.

Marking its 51st anniversary on 6 November 2011, the International Centre for Kathakali in Delhi organized ‘Guru Sangamam’ at which gurus from various classical styles were honoured: Kathakali - Guru Sadanam Balakrishnan and Leela Omcherry; Odissi - Guru Mayadhar Raut; Mohiniattam- Bharati Shivaji; Bharatanatyam - Saroja Vaidyanathan and Geeta Chandran.

October 2011


Bharatanatyam Guru Radha Sridhar, Founder Director of Venkatesha Natya Mandir that was established in 1969 in Bangalore, was chosen for the SHANTALA NATYA PRASHASTI, the highest award in Karnataka given for established dance gurus and dancers. The award contains Rs 3 lakh in cash and a citation.

Guru Vempati Chinna Sathyam has been awarded Honorary Doctorate DLIT by Central Hyderabad University.


Lotus Music and Dance honored New York masters of traditional dance – Pt Satyanarayana Charka (Kathak guru, East West School of Dance at Ananda Ashram) and Beibei Gu (Chinese traditional dance, director of School of the Arts, New York Chinese Cultural Centre) on October 23, 2011 at Brooklyn, NY.

Devdasi Nrutya Mandir presented the 2011 the DEVDASI NATIONAL AWARD to Bharatanatyam dancer Mythili Prakash from Los Angeles on October 14, 2011 at Rabindra Mandap, Bhubaneswar, on the closing day of the annual Devdasi Festival. Every year, an outstanding Indian classical dancer below the age of 40 is presented the Devdasi National Award in the presence of the last Devdasi of Puri Jagannath Temple, Sashimani Devadasi.

September 2011


Meenakshi Medhi was honoured on September 25, 2011 with the NATIONAL NRITYA BHUSHAN AWARD in the field of Sattriya dance, in the prestigious India Theatre Olympiad 2011 by Utkal Yuva Sanskrutik Sangh, Cuttack, Orissa.
Urmimala Sarkar has been unanimously elected as Vice President of World Dance Alliance Asia Pacific.


Bharatanatyam dancer couple from Mysore, Badari Divya Bhushan and Anjana Bhushan were honored with SUVARNA KARNATAKA RAJYOTSAVA PRASHASTHI by Suvarna Karnataka Rakshana Vedike at Ravindra Kalakshetra recently at Bangalore. Twelve eminent persons from society were selected for the award.


KVS AWARD was given to Kuchipudi dancer and guru Vempati Ravi Shankar on 26th September 2011 at YMHA Hall, Eluru, on the eve of the birthday of Guru KV Satyanarayana.

Namma Rangaprapancha, a cultural magazine brought out by the Rangaprapancha Samskrutika Vedike, honored 23 persons from various walks of life with RANGAPRAPANCHA AWARD on September 14, 2011 at Ravindra Kalakshetra, Bangalore. Musician Dr. Shymala Bhave, Dr. Subramanyam, film stars Kaminidharan and Gurudath honored Sai Venkatesh for 35 years of service in the field of dance as light designer for dance.
Sai Venkatesh is also managing trustee, Sai Arts International, and organiser of Sai Nrityotsav every month in Bangalore. He is a graduate in dance from Bangalore University and 3 years diploma in dance choreography from Natya Institute of Kathak and Choreography. He has done light direction for more than 2000 dance productions choreographed by eminent gurus like Dr. Maya Rao, Vyjayanthimala Bali, Sonal Mansingh, Malavika Sarukkai, Rama Vaidyanathan, Madhu Nataraj and so on. He has toured USA, Europe and England with Lata Pada, Menaka Thakkar, Chitraleka Bolar to name a few. He is presently technical director of Seva Sadan Auditorium, Bangalore.

Geeta Chandran joins Shiv Nadar Schools Advisory Board Iconic tech visionary Shiv Nadar of HCL has invited dancer Geeta Chandran to be on the Advisory Board of his new venture Shiv Nadar Schools. The dancer/choreographer will bring to the Board her ability of synthesizing systems from traditional knowledge learning into formal learning systems of modern education. Geeta has efficiently injected traditional Bharatanatyam with her personal contemporary vision of dance and is an expert in cultural curriculum development from a practical point of view. Geeta joins three other eminent persons on the Advisory Board: Educationists Gowri Ishwaran and Prof. AK Sharma and institution builder Muthusamy Varadarajan.


Vyjayanthi Kashi has been elected as the Chairman of Karnataka Sangeeta Nritya Academy.


On September 1, 2011, Chennai based Carnatic and Hindustani musician TV Gopalakrishnan, and
Kathak queen Sitara Devi aged 91 were honoured with the LEGENDS OF INDIA LIFETIME ACHIEVEMENT AWARD 2011. TV Gopalakrishnan is a vocalist, plays the violin and is also an exponent of the mridangam.
August 2011


Presided by Dr. Pappu Venugopal Rao, SAMPRADAYA SIROMANI awards were given by Dr. GV Rao 82nd birthday commemorative honour to artistes of eminence - Veteran music composer MS Viswanathan, veteran actors (stage & films) VS Raghavan and AR Srinivasan and Bharatanatyam artistes Shanta and Dhananjayan, on 21st August at Pethachi Auditorium, Chennai.


Natyarangam, dance wing of the Narada Gana Sabha Trust, presented its annual thematic festival Kadhai Kadhaiyam.  On the inaugural day of August 12, 2011, guru Rhadha was honored. The OBUL REDDY AWARD for senior dancer went to PT Narendran, SUDHARANI RAGHUPATHY AWARD to violinist Kalaiarasan, and VASANTHALAKSHMI NARASIMHACHARI AWARD to V Karuna Sagari for talent promotion.

July 2011


Vice President Hamid Ansari honoring Rathna Kumar in New Delhi on July 22, 2011, with the 2010 Sangeet Natak Akademi Puraskar for Kuchipudi.


The Karnataka Nritya Kala Parishath awarded the title NARTHANA NIPUNA to Shridhar and Anuradha Shridhar on the occasion of Ankura festival of young dancers on July 11, 2011 at Bangalore.

Sri Krishna Gana Sabha celebrated Yagnaraman July Fest 2011 from June 25 to July 3. On July 3, 2011 Swami Dayanand Saraswathi conferred this year's YAGNARAMAN LIFETIME ACHIEVEMENT AWARD on dancer Padma Subrahmanyam (cash award of Rs.1,00,000, a scroll and a gold medallion) and the YAGNARAMAN AWARD OF EXCELLENCE for young talent on ghatam vidwan S Karthick and Bharatanatyam dancer Zakir Hussain (cash award of Rs.15,000, a scroll and a gold medallion).

June 2011


On June 23, 2011 Vyjayanthi Kashi received the KALPASHREE AWARD from Kalpashree Performing Arts Centre at Ravindra Kalakshetra, Bangalore.

May 2011


On May 27, 2011, the McKnight Foundation of Minnesota named Minnesota-based dancer /choreographer Ranee Ramaswamy as the 2011 MCKNIGHT DISTINGUISHED ARTIST, in recognition of artistic excellence spanning more than three decades. Now in its 14th year, the annual honor includes a $50,000 cash award and recognizes individual Minnesota artists who have made significant contributions to the quality of the state's cultural life. In 1992, Ranee Ramaswamy established Ragamala Dance. Ramaswamy is the first dance artist to be selected as McKnight Distinguished Artist. The McKnight Foundation will honor Ramaswamy at a private dinner later this year.
http://www.mcknight.org/newsandviews/news_detail.aspx?itemID=8788&catID=6375&typeID=2


Anusha with the recipient of the Global Empowerment Award - Susan Ann Davis, chair of Vital Voices
Anusha Subramanyam, artistic director of Beeja in London, won The ASIAN WOMEN OF ACHIEVEMENT AWARDS 2011 in the Arts and Culture Category. The ceremony was held on May 19, 2011 at the Park Lane Hilton in London. The Asian Women of Achievement Awards co-founded by Pinky Lilani OBE in 1999, were conceived to celebrate the often unsung Asian heroines of British life. Such women make a huge contribution in fields as diverse as business, entrepreneurship and social and humanitarian work. These awards are their moment in the spotlight.

Los Angeles based choreographer Malathi Iyengar is the recipient of 2010 LESTER HORTON AWARD FOR OUTSTANDING ACHIEVEMENT IN WORLD DANCE for ‘Shivaya’ by Rangoli Dance Company. The award presented by Dance Resource Center (DRC) of Los Angeles is named after modern dance pioneer Lester Horton. DRC established the peer-voted awards 20 years ago and the presentations are for choreography, performance, technical contributions, teaching, and other disciplines. Excellence in dance is honored during a ceremony held each year and the 20th Annual Lester Horton Awards was held on May 15, 2011, at Live Arts Los Angeles.
http://www.drc-la.org/posts/view/congratulations-to-the-2010-horton-award-winners-

Thankamani Kutty, Director, Kalamandalam Calcutta has been awarded the D.Litt. by the Rabindra Bharati University, Kolkata on 10th May, 2011. The earlier D.Litt. dancer recipients from Rabindra Bharati University were T Balasaraswati, Uday Sankar, Rukmini Devi Arundale, Shanta Rao, Amala Sankar and Pt. Birju Maharaj. Thankamani Kutty’s contribution to the field of Bharatanatyam and Mohiniattam includes new choreographies of varnams, padams, keerthanams and thillanas in different languages. She has also choreographed a number of dance dramas including ones by Rabindranath Tagore applying the forms of Bharatanatyam, Mohiniattam and Kathakali which have been highly acclaimed.

Kalasagar Awards 2011 were presented at Ernakulam to the following artists selected through nominations received from the art lovers on 28 May 2011 which also happens to be the birthday celebrations of its founder Kalamandalam Krishnankutty Poduval who redefined the place of the chenda in Kathakali. Eminent personalities like Malayalam playback singer P Jayachandran, novelist Sethu, Dr. KG Poulose, Former Vice Chancellor of Kerala Kalamandalam, Dr. OM Anujan, AB Raj Anand, critic V Kaladharan participated and presented the awards.
Recipients of KALASAGAR PURASKARAM 2011
KATHAKALI: Vesham /Actor: Kottakal Chandrasekhara Varrior, Pattu / Music: Palanad Divakaran Namboodiri, Chenda / Percussion: Kurur Vasudevan Namboodiri, Maddalam / Percussion: Varanasi Vishnu Namboodiri, Chutty/Make-Up: Kalanilayam Parameswaran, OTTENTHULLAL: Kalamandalam Prabhakaran, CHAKYARKOOTHU: Painkulam Damodara Chakyar, KOODIYATTAM: Ammanoor Kuttan Chakyar, MOHINIATTAM: Kalamandalam Kshemavathi, BHARATANATYAM: Kalamandalam Chandrika, KUCHIPUDI: Kalamandalam Mohana Thulasi, THAYAMBAKA: Panamanna Sasi, PANCHAVADYAM: Thimila: Annamannada Parameswaran Marar, Maddalam: Cherpulasseri Sivan, Edakka: Thiruvilwamala Hari, Thalam: Pallavoor Raghava Pisharodi, Kombu: Machad Kuttappan.

April 2011


On April 29, 2011 Shristi Centre of Performing Arts (Bangalore) presented SHRISTI NATIONAL ACHIEVEMENT AWARD FOR DANCE to Leela Ramanathan. In 1972 she founded the Meenakshi Sundaram Center of Performing Arts in Bangalore under the auspices of the East West Education Trust. She is the Honorary Director of the school where she still teaches Bharatanatyam. She is a prolific writer and researcher in classical Indian dance forms with over 800 articles to her credit and a book on the anvil.


WORLD DANCE DAY PURASKAR 2011 was conferred on V Soumyasree representing Maharashtra for contribution in the field of Bharatanatyam, by Natraj Music & Dance Academy, Visakhapatnam on April 29, 2011 on World Dance Day.

The 17th CHAMAN LAL MEMORIAL SOCIETY AWARDS function was held on April 23, 2011 at Siri Fort Auditorium in Delhi where special honour was conferred on eminent theatre personalities. The awards, which carry a purse of Rs. 25,000 each along with a citation/ memento and a shawl, was presented by the chief guest, cine and theatre personality Tom Alter. Acclaimed theatre personality Ratan Thiyam (Imphal) was honoured with the Lifelong Achievement Award for enriching the performing arts particularly the theatre world with his extraordinary talent. Popularly known as Sharmaji, Delhi based 80-year-old veteran HV Sharma was conferred with the Award for Excellence in Stage Craft for his outstanding contribution in Indian theatre. Raghav Prakash (Delhi) was presented the Award for Excellence in Light Design.


On April 18, 2011 Veena Murthy Vijay was conferred this year's KEMPE GOWDA STATE AWARD from Govt of Karnataka with a cash prize and a shawl for her outstanding achievement in dance (Bharatanatyam & Kuchipudi).

During the St. Louis Indian Dance Festival held from April 15 – 17, 2011 eminent artistes were honored by Soorya Performing Arts. LIFETIME ACHIEVEMENT AWARDS to Guru Hema Rajagopalan and Guru Mythili Kumar, NRITYA RATNAKARA AWARD to Sujatha Srinivasan (Cleveland, OH) and Roopa Shyamasundara (Detroit, MI), ABHINAYA SHIROMANI AWARD to Sunanda Nair (Houston, Texas), Odissi dancer Sreyashi Dey (Ann Arbor, MI) and Kathak artiste Charlotte Moraga were awarded NRITYA CHOODAMANI AWARD, Hema Sharma (Overland Park, Kansas State) was conferred with NRITYA SEVA RATNA AWARD.


At the 10th Jivan Paani Memorial Festival organized by Sonal Mansingh, the JIVAN RATNA AWARD was conferred on veteran Odissi dancer Minati Mishra on April 14, 2011 at India Habitat Centre, New Delhi.


Eminent arts writer and columnist Shanta Serbjeet Singh has been elected Vice-Chairman of the Sangeet Natak Akademi, the national academy of music, dance and drama in New Delhi, by its General Council. The Chairman of the Akademi is well-known dancer Leela Samson, who was appointed by the President last year. The Secretary and Chief Executive is Jayant Kastuar.


Kuchipudi exponent Vyjayanthi Kashi was honored on April 3, 2011 at Mysore by His Excellency H R Bharadwaj, the Governor of Karnataka for her outstanding contribution to Kuchipudi, on the occasion of the Vasundharotsav Dance Festival. Vyjayanthi Kashi’s Dancejathre is India's one and only dance fair. Shambhavi School of Dance and Shambhavi Dance Theater located in Kengeri Satellite Town, Bangalore is a unique Gurukul, attracting many Indians and foreigners to pursue the art form.

March 2011


Leela Samson, chairperson of the Sangeet Natak Akademi and director of Kalakshetra in Chennai, was elected as the new chairperson of the Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC) - film censor board. She succeeded veteran actress Sharmila Tagore, who ended her tenure on March 31, 2011.


At the Indian face-off on the show 'Guinness World Records - Ab India Todega...' in March 2011, two prominent Kathak dancers of the country Prachi Shah and Vidha Lal were seen competing against each other to set a new Guinness World Record for “most Kathak spins in a minute.” While Prachi made 93 full spins, it was Vidha Lal who got into the Guinness Book of World Records for making 103 chakkars in one minute.


Tridhara presented the 4th GURU DEBAPRASAD AWARD to Dr.Yamini Krishnamurti for her contribution to Odissi dance, on March 29, 2011 at Rabindra Mandap, Bhubaneswar. Yamini Krishnamurti is known worldwide for her presentations of Bharatanatyam, Kuchipudi and Odissi. A name synonymous with classical dance in India, Yamini had already become a legend in her youth. Her dancing career brought her numerous honours including Padma Shri, Padma Bhushan, Kalidas Samman, Sangeet Natak Akademi Award, Fellow of Sangeet Natak Akademi, Legend of India.

Padma Awards, the country’s highest civilian awards, are conferred in three categories - Padma Vibhushan, Padma Bhushan and Padma Shri. Padma Vibhushan is awarded for exceptional and distinguished service; Padma Bhushan for distinguished service of high order and Padma Shri for distinguished service in any field. The awards are announced on the occasion of Republic Day every year.
The awards were conferred by the President of India at a function held at Rashtrapati Bhavan on March 24, 2011.
Approved by the President of India for the year 2010, the Padma Awards announced on January 25, 2011 comprise 13 Padma Vibhushan, 31 Padma Bhushan and 84 Padma Shri Awards.
PADMA VIBHUSHAN: Dr. Kapila Vatsyayan
PADMA BHUSHAN: CV Chandrasekhar (Bharatanatyam), Madavoor Vasudevan Nair (Kathakali), Satyadev Dubey (theatre)
PADMA SHRI: Makar Dwaja Darogha (Chhau), MK Saroja (Bharatanatyam), Sunayana Hazarilal (Kathak), Kalamandalam Kshemavathy (Mohiniattam), Dadi Dorab Pudamjee (puppetry), Neelam Mansingh Chowdhry (theatre), Peruvanam Kuttan Marar (Chenda)
Full list: http://india.gov.in/myindia/celebration_awards.php

Isadora Duncan Award Nominations
The Bay Area Isadora Duncan Award committee has nominated Abhinaya Dance Company for 3 different Izzie awards:
- Outstanding Achievement in Revival/Reconstruction & Restaging for Varsha: The Rainy Season
- for Music/Sound/Text for Synergy with San Jose Taiko
- for a Sustained Achievement Award for Mythili Kumar
The annual event commemorating the 25th anniversary of the awards was conducted on March 14, 2011 in San Francisco.

Under Lata Pada’s visionary leadership as Founder and Artistic Director, Sampradaya, Canada’s award winning Indian dance company, has established itself as an internationally acclaimed dance company recognized for innovation and excellence in its repertoire. On March 10, 2011, at the Ontario Trillium Foundation office in Toronto with the Minister of Culture and Tourism, the Hon. Michael Chan, Ontario Trillium Foundation representatives and other notable not-for-profit groups in attendance, Sampradaya Dance Creations was officially announced as one of 11 organizations to receive support for infrastructure projects, to serve a broader cultural community through the province’s Community Capital Fund (CCF). For Sampradaya specifically, this grant will translate into the opportunity to expand and upgrade its current studio facility which is based in Mississauga towards improving performance and training spaces to increase opportunities for emerging and mature dancers and performance artists to work together in the Halton-Peel region. For an organization that has just celebrated 20 years as a professional dance company, this grant allows to push forward with future plans to keep the company vibrant, current and accessible to its community.

February 2011

The first SUMITRA CHARAT RAM AWARD FOR LIFETIME ACHIEVEMENT was given to Pt. Birju Maharaj on February 21, 2011.


At the 26th Konark Dance and Music Festival conducted by Guru Gangadhar Pradhan Foundation at Arka Vihar in Konark, the first GURU GANGADHAR PRADHAN AWARD was conferred on Ustad Amjad Ali Khan (cash award of 1 lakh, citation and shawl) on the inaugural day of February 19, 2011 and the 12th SANJUKTA BIRLA AWARD (cash award of Rs.25000, citation and shawl) was conferred on Dr. Minati Mishra on the concluding day of February 23, 2011.

At the Kalaimamani awards function organized by the Iyal Isai Nataka Manram on February 13, 2011 at Chennai, Padma Subrahmanyam was conferred the BALASARASWATI AWARD that carries a cash award of Rs. 1 lakh and a memento.


On 12 February 2011, Odissi dancer Madhumita Raut received the GHUNGUR SAMMAN 2010-11 at Jayadev Bhavan, Bhubaneswar.

On February 11, 2011, Sri Sumukhi Rajasekharan Memorial Foundation celebrated the Eighth Anniversary and the commemoration of the fifth year ‘Kala Poshakam’ concerts at Narada Gana Sabha, Chennai. Dr. Rukmini Ramani, Founder Director, Sivan Arts Academy, was conferred the title GURU BRAHMAM (Lifetime Achievement Award) for her yeoman service and contribution in the field of Carnatic music. The foundation conferred NRITHYA CHINTHAMANI on Bharatanatyam dancer V Balagurunathan, and NRITHYA KALA VARDHINI on Vidhyalakshmi Madhan, Lavanya Rathnaswami, Shobitha Balakrishnan & Sindhuja Sankaran, disciples of late Krishnaveni Lakshmanan and Gayatri Balagurunathan, for their admirable talents in Bharatanatyam.
The specialities of these trophies were - gold coated temple kalasam for Guru Brahmam and silver Coated Temple Kalasam for Nrithya Chinthamani and copper Kalasam for Nrithya Kala Vardhini. These were exclusively conceptualized and designed by the Mylapore Trio, which according to Surendranath (Creative Director) are auspicious and propitious symbols, with sanctity attached to it.

On February 4, 2011 Kerala Sangeetha Nataka Academy announced three fellowships, 17 academy awards, two endowments and 21 Guru Pooja awards for eminent personalities from various fields. For the first time, the academy also gave an award for the best mimicry artist.
Endowment award winners are KP Nadhipulam for ottan thullal (Dr TP Sukumaran endowment) and Babu Parasseri for drama acting (CI Parameshwaran endowment).
Some of the winners of academy awards are: Methil Devika (Mohiniattam), KV Prasadh (mridangam), FACT Padmanabhan (Kathakali costume), Madambi Subramanyan Namboodhiri (Kathakali music), Kalamandalam Narayanan Nair (maddalam), Mathoor Govindhan Kutty (best Kathakali costume), Machadu Rama Krishnan Nayar (kombu), Cheruthazham Chandran (thayambaka), Marayam Muttam Johny (kadha prasangam), TH Lalitha (violin), Jayaraj Warrier (drama and caricature), KP Gopalan (drama- direction).
Some of the Guru Pooja award recipients are: Kizhakoot Anniyan Marar (melam), Kalamandalam Husnabanu (Mohiniattam), Manni Neelakanda Chakyar (koothu).


On February 4, 2011 the GURU ACCHAN MAHARAJ KALAJYOTI AWARD was conferred on Kuchipudi Guru Vempati Chinna Satyam during the Vasantotsava annual festival conducted by Pt. Birju Maharaj's institution Kalashram.

January 2011

Sudha Raghuram is a Bharatanatyam dancer and instructor based in Montgomery, Alabama, USA. She has been awarded the prestigious Dance Apprenticeship grant for Bharatanatyam for 2011 by the Alabama State Council for the Arts. The grant amount is $1500 and this will be the 6th year she has won this award for her ongoing work in the field of Indian classical dance.

On January 29, 2011, the "Mylapore Trio" of Sri Sumukhi Rajasekharan Memorial Foundation celebrated the ninth year Margazhi Bala Utsavam, an exclusive children’s festival in which more than 750 children and youth participated in various competitions. Titles and awards were conferred on talented children at a special award function by the Chief Guest Dr. C Vamsadhara, Dean, Stanley Medical College, Chennai, and the guest of honour was Manju Barghavee of 'Sankarabaranam' fame. NATYA BALA BRAHMAM was conferred on R Ananditha, SANGEETHA YUVA BUSHAN on V Karthik and S Manikandan. The MAHA VIDHYAPEETAM Award (The Best Educational Institution Award) was presented to Sri Jayendra Sarasawathi Swamigal Golden Jubilee Hr. Sec. School, Sankarnagar, Tirunelveli District, and received by its Correspondent Nirmal Ramarathinam and Principal Usha Raman. The Seventh Year PATRON SMT. R NAGAMMAL ‘SWARNA KALAS’ ROLLING TROPHY was presented to Ram Sangeeta Vidhyalaya - Guru Anausuya Ashok Kumar for large participation.

The General Council of Sangeet Natak Akademi, the National Academy of Music, Dance and Drama, New Delhi at its meeting held on 19 January 2011 elected two (2) eminent personalities in the field of performing arts, namely Girija Devi and Nataraj Ramakrishna as Sangeet Natak Akademi Fellows (Akademi Ratna). The General Council of the Akademi also selected thirty eight (38) persons from the fields of Music, Dance, Theatre and Puppetry for the Sangeet Natak Akademi Awards (Akademi Puraskar) for the year 2010.

In the field of Dance, nine eminent practitioners, namely Malabika Mitra (Kathak), Kalamandalam Kombil Govindan Nair (Kathakali), Phanjoubam Iboton Singh (Manipuri), Ratna Kumar (Kuchipudi), Aruna Mohanty (Odissi), Manik Borbayan (Sattriya), Uttara Asha Coorlawala (Creative & Experimental Dance), Kalamandalam Painkulam Rama Chakyar (Other Major Traditions of Dance & Dance Theatre – Kutiyattam) and S Rajeshwari (Music for Dance - Bharatanatyam) have been selected for the Akademi Award 2010.

In the field of Music, nine eminent artists, namely Chhannu Lal Mishra and Yashpal for Hindustani Vocal Music, Budhaditya Mukherjee (Sitar) and Nityanand Haldipur (Flute) for Hindustani Instrumental Music, Suguna Purushothaman and Mysore Nagamani Srinath for Carnatic Vocal Music, Nagai R Muralidharan (Violin) and Srimushnam V Raja Rao (Mridangam) for Carnatic Instrumental Music, and M V Simhachala Sastry (Harikatha) for Other Major Traditions of Music have been selected for the Akademi Award 2010.

In the field of Theatre, eight eminent persons have been selected for Akademi Awards 2010. They include D Vizai Bhaskar (Telugu) and Atamjeet (Punjabi) for Playwriting, Veenapani Chawla and Urmil Kumar Thapaliyal for Direction and Dilip Prabhavalkar, Banwari Taneja, Maya Krishna Rao and Swatilekha Sengupta for Acting.

For their contribution to Other Traditional/Folk/ Tribal Music/Dance/ Theatre and Puppetry, ten artists have been selected for the Akademi Award. They are Harbhajan Singh Namdhari for Gurbani Kirtan (Punjab), Nazeer Ahmed Khan Warsi & Naseer Ahmed Khan Warsi (Joint Award) for Qawwali (Andhra Pradesh), Dwijen Mukherjee for Rabindra Sangeet (West Bengal), T Somasundaram for Folk Dance (Tamil Nadu), Krishna Kumari for Folk Music- Bhakha (Jammu & Kashmir), Chanda Jagdish Tiwadi for Folk Theatre - Bharud (Maharashtra), K Chinna Anjannamma for Tolu Bommalata – Shadow Puppetry (Andhra Pradesh), and K V Ramakrishnan & K C Ramakrishnan (Joint Award) for Pava Kathakali – Glove Puppetry (Kerala).

Ashok D. Ranade will receive the Akademi Award 2010 for Scholarship in Performing Arts (Music) and Jaidev Taneja will receive the Award for Overall Contribution to Performing Arts (Theatre).
Sangeet Natak Akademi Fellowships (Akademi Ratna) and Akademi Awards (Akademi Puraskar) for the year 2010

At INDRADHANUSH 2011 festival of Indian classical dances conducted by SUNAINA, the GURU SAMMAN AWARD was presented to Bharatanatyam Guru Yamini Krishnamurti on January 15, to Odissi Guru Mayadhar Raut on January 16, and Kathak Guru Jitendra Maharaj on January 17, 2011 at Azad Bhawan Auditorium, New Delhi.


Guru Kanaka Sudhakar received the SWAMI VIVEKANANDA NATIONAL AWARD in the field of Art and Culture by the Ramakrishna-Vivekananda International Foundation on the occasion of 150th Birth Anniversary Celebration of Swami Vivekananda on January 13, 2011 at the Siri Fort Auditorium, New Delhi.


Lata Pada, Artistic Director of Sampradaya Dance Creations in Canada, has been awarded India’s highest award for overseas Indians. The PRAVASI BHARATIYA SAMMAN was conferred on Lata Pada by Pratibha Devisingh Patil, the President of India, on January 9, 2011 in New Delhi, to commemorate lifetime accomplishments in the global Indian Diaspora. Lata is one of 15 individuals of Indian origin who were conferred this honour.

At the 78th South Indian Music Conference and festival of the Indian Fine Arts Society held from Dec 18, 2010 at Chennai, dancer Vyjayantimala Bali was honored with NATYA KALASIKHAMANI on the concluding day of the festival January 4, 2011.

Kartik Fine Arts conferred Anuroopitha Sampath with NATYA CHUDAR award on January 1, 2011 at Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan, Chennai.

The SANGITA KALA ACHARYA award was conferred by Music Academy on Bharatanatyam guru Rhadha at the 84th annual conference held from Dec 15, 2010 to January 1, 2011 in Chennai.

Highlights - Yearwise listing