Being a huge fan of Priyadarshini Govind, I experienced a real treat yesterday watching her perform at Sri Krishna Gana Sabha. Sticking to the traditional pieces, she once again proved that Bharatanatyam is not boring.
I always used to hear the words “Transforming to another world, lucky to see her performing etc” but never believed in them until I saw a performance almost 10 years before during my engineering days at BITS, PILANI. The SPIC MACAY organized a Bharatanatyam recital and the performer did an abhinaya piece showing mother-son relationship. Tears rolled out of my eyes and that’s the first moment in my life wherein I was transformed into another world. The performer was none other than “Priyadarshini Govind”. After that I had seen her speaking in several conferences being a part of discussions but not dancing. And yes, yesterday was the day when I had that bliss of experiencing that happy moment again.
The curtain raised with the song “Jaya jaya swamin” at 6:58 pm while the performance is scheduled at 7pm. Offering pranams to gurus Kalaimamani S.K. Rajarathnam Pillai and Padmasbhushan Smt. Kalanidhi Narayanan, Priyadarshini govind started her recital in Sri Krishna Gana Sabha with a composition on devi in Ragamalika and Talamalika. Devi’s many facets-the compassionate one, the fierce one was shown. With a catchy tune “Rupam devi Jayam devi” the performance started with a power packed item.
She chose to present “Sami nine ne korinanura” a varnam of the Thanjavur Quartet wherein she showed beautifully the pining of the nayika for the company of Lord Brihadeeswara. The heroin as swadinapathika nayika in the second part of the varnam is a treat to watch. Jatis of the varnam are composed by mridangist vijayaraghavan and the audience were delighted to watch her perform intense jathis with full of energy and displayed their affection towards her through clapping her after each jathi that she performed.
The next item is a Javali “Nee maatalemayenu ra” in purvi Kalyani ragam which centers around samanya nayika who is quite tired of the promises made by the hero. He has made many promises to her which he did not have any intention of keeping. She opens the door and with great sarcasm she says to the hero “What happened to all those promises? You had me under your spell; You pinched my nose and promised me a nose ring. Did all your promises blow away with the wind? The concluding part of this javali created a joyful ambience in the hall.
This is followed with a padam in tamil wherein the nayika being in a very anxious state requests her friend to go and bring her beloved. The performer ended the show with a thillana in ragam behag. The artists on orchestra were Nitya Kalyani vaidyanatham on nattuvangam, Preethi Mahesh on vocal, shikamani on violin, Vijaya Raghavan on mridangam, Murugan and his team on lights, Lakshmi srinadh and Kumar ayyelu for costumes.
Photo credits: Vicky fotos