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SRUTI- The India Music and Dance Society

co presents with The Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts:
Rama Vaidyanathan

A gem in her native India, Rama Vaidyanathan is one of the world’s leading interpreters of Bharata Natyam, the great classical dance form of southern India that’s characterized by complex footwork, abstract movements and elaborate mime. With a distinct style that melds tradition and her 20 years of expertise, she is renowned as the “thinking dancer.” With every stamp, turn and pose, Vaidyanathan, beautifully accompanied by several accomplished musicians, will enthrall with “fire power and ebullience, athleticism and rhythmic prowess” (The Hindu, Delhi).
Rama will be accompanied by a live orchestra: Nattuvangam - Kameswaran Sivakumar; Vocal - Vidya Srinivasan; Mridangam - Arun Kumar; Violin - Vikram Raghukumar
Saturday, November 3 at 8 p.m.

Venue: Zellerbach Theatre
Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts
3680 Walnut Street
Philadelphia, PA 19104

Purchase Tickets at the
Annenberg Center

This program is supported in part by the Samuel S. Fels Fund.

Watch Video Clip

Program Notes

SANNIDHANAM - The Temple And The Goddess :
The architecture of the Hindu Temple is based on the principles of symmetry, balance and precision. Right from the sacred lane leading to the Temple, the four door ways facing the four directions, the tall copper flag staff, the quadrangle courtyard, the long corridors with intricate carvings to finally the stark and simple Sanctum Sanctorum, the architecture is designed for the human mind to journey from the outward to the inward, from the physical world to the metaphysical. After journeying through the different layers of the Temple premises, the devotee finally comes face to face with the enshrined Deity, the empowered Goddess in this case.
While the movement dynamics of Bharatanatyam is used to celebrate the architectural brilliance of a Hindu Temple, the " Beeja Mantra " from The Devi Mahatmayam an ancient Sanskrit text, is used to describe the multi faceted Goddess. While she mercilessly destroys all evil, she is the universal mother, compassionate, beautiful and sensuous.
Ragamalika, Talam Adi

VARNAM - Declaration of intense love:
The heroine deeply in love with Lord Siva unabashedly declares her love for the dancing Lord. She says,"I am enchanted by your cosmic dance. Do not be indifferent towards me, for I have come expectantly at your door step to unite with you. You are enshrined in the beautiful temple town of Tiruvavrur and here I am amazed to see every one chanting your name fervently. I am equally delighted to be a part of the magnificent procession when your idol is taken out on to the streets amidst joyous celebrations. Liberate my body and soul oh Lord, for Cupid's arrows of love are striking me incessantly and I am unable contain my passion any longer." This is a composition of the Tanjore Quartet.
Ragam Bhairavi, Talam Rupakam

JAVALI - A friend's plea to the Lord:
The heroine's friend approaches the lord and says "Oh Lord, please listen to my friend's plea and take note of her pitiable condition. You claim that you love her, but is this what you call true love ? To ignore her and reject her advances? " Sending a strong message across through her friend the heroine says "Hey you ! you better mend your ways, because this kind of behaviour is totally unacceptable to me." A composition of the Tanjore Quartet.
Ragam Suruti, Talam Adi

BHAYILI PIYA - A woman's dual emotions of Passion and Devotion for Lord Krishna. :
" Oh darling, don't go away, sit with me to savor this beautiful moon lit night. Let us lock ourselves in each others arms." This statement reflects her passionate self. In a deeper mood reflecting her true devotion she says " I have been unnecessarily embroiled in the unending circle of worldly affairs. I should actually leave everything for you. For who cares for me? Who is there for me other than you my Lord . A Hindi compostion of the 19th Century Poet King Swati Tirunal. 
Ragam Sorath, Talam Adi

YENNA TAVAM SHEIDANAY - What did you do Mother Yashoda?:
The devotee in this Tamil poem is unable to fathom the reason for Mother yashoda's good fortune. " What penance did you do ? " she asks. " What pious deed did you do to have the supreme Lord Krishna himself address you as "mother" ? You have cajoled him, reprimanded him, fed him , sung him a lullaby and even tied him to the mortar when he was naughty. Even the Gods are envious of this special relationship you share with Lord krishna. A composition of Papanasam Sivan.
Ragam Kapi, Talam Adi

TILLANA - A finale number show casing the pure dance movement technique of Bharatanatyam.:
The performance ends with a Sankeertanam or calling out to the Lord - where the devotee actually immerses herself in the unparalleled beauty of Krishna. Sensing his presence every where she dances with him in sheer ecstasy. The Tillana is in Ragam Dwijavanti Talam Adi , and the Sankeertanam is in Ragam Manorama Talam Adi . Both are compositions of the legendary Balamurali Krishna.