Lakshmi Vishwanathan presents
Banyan Tree 2 - Vata Vriksha
Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan, 6.30pm
September 9, 2016 Chennai

August 26, 2016

BANYAN TREE 2 - VATA VRIKSHA is a 21st anniversary presentation

Banyan Tree, the magnum opus dance-theatre production of guru and choreographer Lakshmi Vishwanathan , premiered in Brandeis University in 1995 is presented now on September 9th at the Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan, Mylapore. With a new cast of ten dancers, joining Lakshmi and Vinayan, this path breaking original work reveals the story of dance in South India, and takes the viewer on an exciting journey of discovery.

Date: September 9, 2016
Venue: Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan, Mylapore, Chennai
Time: 6.30pm

Since 1995-96, Lakshmi has not only been a solo dancer of classic Bharatanatyam but has also presented unique group shows to loud acclaim. Banyan Tree was Lakshmi's first large canvas. She produced it with the extensive research and painstaking teaching of every move, every expression and every step to new groups of young dancers. Banyan Tree played ten shows in 1995-96 season, toured the USA, played in Indian dance festivals and also on national television.  This oeuvre has also been a subject of research by foreign dance scholars and was written about in the journal of the Roehampton University UK. Lakshmi has since 1995, premiered shows every season - Chaturanga, Krishna Darshanam, Vidya Sundari, Thiru Mayilai, Tyagaraja Ramayanam, Chidambaram, the Cosmic One for SIFAS Singapore, Nandanar Charitram, Stree, Hrdaya Vilapam, and more.

This body of work besides her solo performances marks Guru Lakshmi Vishwanathan as an icon of creative energy and original thinking.  As a trained musician under gurus Thedhiyur Narayanaswamy (Semmangudi disciple), Tiruvayyar Krishnamurthy, Alamelu Viswanathan, and T. Muktha,  Lakshmi takes charge of the music for her shows, selecting original music, as well as using classic compositions, arranging the score played by various instruments, and composing suitable tunes for verses like those of Subramanya Bharathi.

Lakshmi also designs the appropriate costumes, choosing hand woven cottons and silks. The script for her shows is worked on with an eye for detail by Lakshmi. She also helps design the lighting and scripts the introductions. Understanding the core idea of choreography which she has studied with deep interest both in India and abroad with world famous choreographers, Lakshmi brings originality and imaginative visualization to her work.