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An awesome dancer exudes spiritual maturity

Ratna Venkat strikes a new chord with ‘Life in a Full Circle’

Shanti Ravi – An awesome dancer- Shanti Ravi Web

Our introduction to the first musical note is Rhythm.

This is through Mother’s heartbeat along with one’s own.

This beat becomes our subconscious mate till the soul leaves our body.

One of the many means to connect to this Rhythm is ‘Dance.’

A dancer has the aptitude to satisfy the self as well as the audience both visually and emotionally.

Many would pursue dance as a hobby, some may take up because of parental or peer pressure, for some others, it is a physical exercise; a chosen few wish to mature in this art ‘spiritually.’

One such dancer that could establish connection not just with her own self but also with the community is none other than our very own home-grown girl Ratna Venkat.

I was one of the awestruck spectators who witnessed Ratna’s Kuchipudi dance recital.

Commendable Concept

The conception of her production ‘Life in a Full Circle’ is highly commendable.

I could visualise Ratna as spiritually centric to the peripheral of many forms of dance. I could also see her as dancing around the Supreme keeping Eswaran as her axis or centre point.

In both ways, she exhibited the theme ‘Life in a Full Circle’ very aptly.

The time that has been devoted for, was witnessed in the perfection of each item.

The research that went into, was obvious in the deepness of the information that was shared.

The magnitude of the production was evident in collaborating with a wide range of supporting artistes.

The attention to detail was apparent in the costumes, complemented by ethnic jewellery.

Emotional Quotient

If we have to define the role of Knowledge in modern jargon, it is the development of ‘Spiritual Quotient’ or SQ in individuals. Knowledge can be of any subject and in this context the reference is to the Indian classical dance form.

SQ has reinforced the ‘Emotional Quotient’ and the traditional ‘Intelligence Quotient’ which will enhance the all-round development of an individual.

Ratna the dancer, took a closer look at her dance life to explore the fundamentals of the art and to comprehend at a higher level.

At the onset of every item, Ratna was able to provide both objective and subjective references to the piece. She made a significant attempt to raise above the relative identifications and discover the absolute aspect of ‘being’ in order to function as a complete and contented dancer.

Effective Time Management

Ratna has the same 24 hours per day like any of us and how that time is being utilised and maximised is something that is very impressive and motivating. At most places in the repertoire, the oneness of the dance and the dancer was felt. This is possible only when the individual consciously connects at a spiritual level.

Another great aspect was that, she was able to perform effortlessly for hours and at the same time speak eloquently before and after each item without any written notes, and notably without even a single gasp.

This again was possible mainly because she was able to tap into her spiritual quotient.

Mythological extracts

Stories from the Hindu mythology such as ‘Dasavataram,’ ‘Bhama Kalapam,’ ‘Gajendra Moksham,’ ‘Mahishasura Mardhini’ were explained in her narration and showcased through her dance in such a way that even a novice would understand.

There were a few highlights of the evening when viewed from varied angles.

From an angle of ‘Unity in Diversity’ – dancing to the rendition of ‘God is Good’ by Jeffery Nathan, captured my heart.

From the viewpoint of ‘Utmost Concentration’ – Dancing on the plate and balancing a pot of water on the head for almost 30 minutes, ‘Tarangam,’ grabbed my attention.

From the perspective of ‘Connecting to the Self,’ ‘Simhanandini’ furthered the winning factor. This is one of its kind that no one has attempted so far in New Zealand and Ratna has the privilege to be the First and Foremost.

Support Artistes

This article would be incomplete without an acknowledgment of supporting artistes, who were equally dedicated to their chosen art forms.

Dr Padma Govardhan and her two gifted children Vishnu Priya on Vocals and Balu on Mridangam and Ghatam lifted the show to a different level.

Syamala Hariharan on Violin and Narsing Rao (from Hyderabad, India) on Nattuvangam made the best team from a Carnatic domain.

On the Hindustani and light music genres, Vidya Teke mellifluously added the magic, supported by Amit Sengupta on Harmonium, Basant Madhur on Tabla, Shivan Padayachi on Bass Guitar, Joseph Alexander on Electronic Drums and Octopad and Hemant Thaker on Keyboard. Listening to such a team was a feast for the soul.

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