Navya Chakravartula 's Nritya Sambhavana-A Kuchipudi Dance Show full of Grace, Poise and Flawless Technique
July 4, 2015
Navya Chakravartula. a student of Smt. Mrinalini Sadananda ( Artistic Director, Kalamandapam , Fairfax , Va) presented a Kuchipudi Dance recital on June 27, 2015 at Chinmaya Somnath , Chantilly , VA. It was indeed a great tribute to Mrinalini 's intense training over the years and Navya danced her heart out this evening.
We reached the dance hall just in time to watch Navya finishing her invocatory dance item " Gam Ganapathe " .
Navya looked every inch the Beautiful and Divine Goddess, Alamel Manga-
In spite of inclement weather , this reviewer was indeed fortunate to watch the next item " Alarulu Kuriyaga" , an annamacharya Kriti in Shankarabharanam raagam . Navya looked every inch the Beautiful and Divine Goddess, Alamel Manga , out to enchant her devotees as well as her divine consort , Lord Venkateshwera . When Navya adorned with ornate Andal like Side bun with the flowing tresses , navigated the stage space with the alluring Kuchipudi gait in rhythmic fashion , it was visually delightful . ( it was indeed kulukulu) .
Navya's eyes were sparkling and facial expression was full of tenderness as she portrayed the Goddess Alamel Manga . When Navya sat on the stage floor with her elongated leg extension in a dream like stance and eyes closed , She looked divine and ethereal .
Transforming into a Neela Megha Sareera-
It was in the next item " Nirupama Sundarakara" , composed by Oothakadu Venkata Subramani Iyer in raagam Pantuvarali , Navya excelled in her execution of elaborate Kuchipudi movements and fantastic facial expressions . Navya's costume of varying shades of blue with beautiful silver-gold polka dots , made her transform into a Neela Megha Sareera of Lord Krishna. Navya danced to enthrall the gopis but she enthralled the audience as well , with her picture perfect postures of Lord Krshna .
However, it was in the " Tarangam" sequence that Navya proved what a versatile dancer she is . Navya moved the brass plate with great dexterity , sometimes moving the plate standing with her toes on the edges of the plate and and at other times standing in the very middle of the plate , moving the plate around back and forth . Navya added some graceful hand movements and her facial expression was always full of joy - Indeed. Nirupama ( beyond Compare) .
Another added attraction to this beautiful blue colored costume was the addition of a Blue Peacock Feather which Navya sported on her head during the Tarangam Sequence .
None of Mrinalini's two Tarangams are alike and her creativity is at its best when she choreographs this item - The song selection , The choice of Costume, the Chosen deity and more importantly the intensity , complexity .of jati sequences on the plate also differ in keeping with the level of competency of the student . I have watched seven Nritya Sambhavanas so far and each student has performed this difficult item with great ease and dexterity - it is indeed a cakewalk for these dancers , -tip-toeing on the brass plate
After a brief intermission , Navya , appeared in a beautiful Ghagra Choli outfit in a pleasing shade of Blue and a veil reflecting Radharani in a bhava of madhurya rasa .
At times the mischievous Krishna and at other times the moonstruck Radharan-
In this famous G.N Balasubramanian song " Radha Sametha Krishna in misra yaman ,, Navya conducted a dance dialogue between Radha and Krishna . Navya was at times the mischievous Krishna and at other times the moonstruck Radharani . Navya also created the illusion of the enactment of Rasa Lila beautifully when she danced in a circle on the stage in Garba like movements.
For every line in the song , be it as Nandakumara or Navaneeta chora , Navya's enactment was priceless . In fact , Navya shone with great radiance as Krishna . ( Koti prakasha) . The mood of this song was both Sringara and Bhakti and Navya was able to capture both these sentiments convincingly.
Lively Javali with a touch of humor-
Next was the Javali " Parulanna Maata Namma Vadu " composed by Dharmapuri Subbarayar in Raaganm Kapi . Javalis are by nature challenging item and require a lot of in-depth understanding of various Nayikas in Natya Shastra . Mrinalini , while introducing this Javali said that she always likes to gift one special item taught by her Guru Vempatty Chinna Satyam to her Student .
Navya was chosen to carry mastergaru's torch forward with this item . Navya's abhinayam exceeded all expectations - Navya's face portrayed the agony of a wife suspecting her husband of infidelirty very well . Navya was also able to portray the innocent face of the husband convincingly , trying to hide his misdemeanors . Navya was able to change her moods and expressions quickly in tune with the lyrics . As the other woman practicing Witchcraft , Navya's abhinayam was quite bewitching . .
A very lively Javali with a touch of humor and a great interplay of emotions between a suspecting wife , a Player husband and the Other woman Navya's multicolored Check pattern saree was quite in keeping with her portrayal of a Plain Housewife.
Nritta and changing the pace and the movements-
The evening ended with a Tillana in raagam Kaanada and in this Navya again demonstrated her prowess in Nritta . Although Navya repeated many of the Jatis and adavus in the course of the evening , they never looked the same . Navya knew how to change the pace and the movements to match the various items . Navya's leaping in the air and then perfect landing on the stage showed her skill as an immaculate dancer . What appealed most to this reviewer is Navya's sweet stage presence and immaculate dancing - Navya's sense of timing was excellent
In the mangalam dedicated to Lord Ramachandra Navya appeared with a Mangal Arti plate in hand with a lit lamp , a fitting finale to an evening of Divine Music and Dance .
All of Mrinalini's Nritya Sambhavanas owe their success in no small measure to her Fine Orchestral Team . This evening , Smt . Latha Ramaswamy's every song reflected her intense bhakthi and devotion . Lataji's rendition of " Nirupama Sundarakara " is one of the best i have heard in a long long time . While Navya was performing Tarangam, Lata transformed into a Nada Tarangini herself . Vijay Ganesh's mridangam and Mrinalini's Kuchipudi dance recitals are now inseperable companions - we cannot imagine One without the other . It is Vijay's Mridangam playing that gives every Nritya Sambhavana its Distinct flavor . This evening witnessed a rare combination of Two Fathers and two Sons on stage - Subhash Vinjamuri and Kamalakiran Vinjamuri on violin and Somiya Narayan on Gatam and his young Son, Sanjit , the guest artist . Subhash and Kamalakiran's violin added that extra lustre to all the items and dance became even more livelier because of the mellifluous notes on the violin . Anand Vemuri's Flute made the Krishna pieces even more enchanting . Sowmiya's Ghatam is always a valuable addition . Sowmiya's son Sanjit got a chance to play the violin during those long costume change breaks. A promising start .
A word of appreciation for Sri Devarakonda Srinivas . Not only did Shri Srinivas handlled the Nattuvangam expertly , Shri Sreenivas excelled in another role . Navya's glowing face and sparkling eyes - all due to Shri Srinivasa's superb skills as a Make up artist . Navya reminded one of Padmini the movie actress with her perfect oval shaped face and luminous , twinkling eyes .
>Six costume changes - quite normal for Mrinalini .
> Mrinalini deseves a big hand for her excellent choreography and superb planning and organisation of these annual Nritya Sambhavanas .
>Did you know that Mrinalini sends Video recordings of all the dance items six months in adavance for the students to learn and practice . Then in four weeks , the Orchestra composes the music . Mrinalini then supervises and fine-tunes both the music and dance in intense rehearsal sessions .
Thank you Kavitha Cheedalla for crisp introductions to each dance item as Master of Ceremonies . One can see the sense of pride on Kavitha's face every time a Nritya Smbhavana concludes successfully . After al she is more than Mrinalini's assistant - more a partner
. We are waiting for June 2016 for another round of Nritya Sambhavanas .
Special Thanks to Satish Chandra Atmuri for the great photos .
vinatha kumar, (C), review, report, contributor, kuchipudi, navya chakravartula, mrinalini sadanance, kalamandapam, june2015, 27, VA, do not copy, copyrights acknowledged