For the first time on British soil, the theme of “Sapta Tandava” was highlighted by Sanskruti Centre for Cultural Excellence, a UK-based arts organisation. The seven tandavas were depicted through different dance disciplines of Bharatanatyam, Yakshagana, Odissi, Kathak, Kuchipudi, and Mohiniattam.
A unique event titled Sivoham was conducted at Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan London on February 24, 2023. Renowned author Amish Tripathi, Minister (Culture & Education), and Director of Nehru Centre London, spoke on how Bhagwan Shiva is a vital element in day-to-day context and lauded the artists and the organising team for presenting and creating awareness of such an intense subject.
Delineating Distinct Tandavas
Twenty dancers of different ages and stages invoked Bhagwan Shiva through Panchakshari mantra and folklore, followed by Sapta Tandavas by Shivani Bhandari, Arya Arun, Yogindra Maravante, Lakshmi Aveen, Dr Ragasudha Vinjamuri, Manju Sunil and Dr Pritha Dasmahapatra. The spellbound audiences hugely appreciated the depth and beauty of the dance presentation.
An explanation about different tandavas was also provided in English, while the compositions of Shahuji Maharaj of Tanjavur,(Chhatarapati Shivaji’s grand nephew) Mahadeva Sambho of Andhra Pradesh in Sanskrit, Marathi and Telugu were used for the depiction. The concept was conceived and executed by Ragasudha Vinjamuri, who herself presented one of the tandavas.
On the occasion, Dr Mattur Nandakumara, Executive Director of The Bhavan, felicitated the artists. The vote of thanks was delivered by Sushil Rapatwar, Trustee of Sanskruti Centre. The programme was anchored by Radhika Joshi and Raj Agrawal.
For the past 14 years in the United Kingdom, Sanskruti Centre for Cultural Excellence has been presenting culturally and socially important subjects through classical dance. It has also been researching and highlighting folk as well as tribal dance traditions and linguistic diversity of India.
Earlier in February, Sanskruti Centre for Cultural Excellence staged the 7th century Sanskrit play titled Bhagavadajjukam in association with Central Sanskrit University, where a delegation of the University travelled to London to present the play.