ballet Firebird in Mysore
August 24, 2006
began with a Pushpanjali by Anjali and Sumitra. After the
salutation to the Gods and the audience, Ardhanareeshwara by Keshava
and his children stole the show. The emotions expressed were very poignant.
The main item of the fare, the Russian ballet came as the concluding number.
The story of Firebird is based on a popular Russian fairytale. Ivan Tsarevitch, a prince happens to stroll in a magic garden. He sees a flock of supernatural heavenly Firebirds resting in the place. Enchanted by the beauty of the birds, he sets a net to capture them. One of the birds is caught. The captured Firebird requests the prince to set it free, and in return, promises to help the prince in distress. Under this understanding with the Firebird, the Prince lets it free. The bird hands over to the Prince a quill from its feathers before flying away. This quill has the magical powers to bring the bird in front of the Prince. The beauty of the garden attracts thirteen princesses and they come to the garden to spend some time there. Eventually they are kidnapped by a villain by name Kashchei. Our good Prince Ivan comes across the captured Princesses and tries to release them from the clutches of the villain. In the process, he falls in love with one of the princess Tsarevna. But Kashchei and his evil forces capture the Prince too. The Prince remembers the promise of the Firebird and he pulls out the quill and calls the bird. The Firebird immediately appears and helps the Prince to demolish the evil forces and kill Kashchei. The story comes to an end with the happy union of the Prince and the Princess.
The lead role of Firebird was enacted by Keshava's elder daughter Anjali and that of the prince was donned by Chetan Hebbar of Mysore. Keshava was the exorcist king Kashchei. The entrance of the Firebird and that of the evil king thrilled the audience. The movements of all characters, around a dozen, were superbly synchronized to the tune of Igor Stravinsky. There was never a dull moment throughout the action packed hour and a half.
his team fully deserved the standing ovation they received after the show.
All the accolades are the result of the painstaking training Keshava imparted
to the participants in such a short time.
SR Krishna Murthy is an art critic based in Mysore.