Quality 7# Concentration

Posted in Bharatanatyam, dance, The 10 Qualities of Bharatanatyam on March 30, 2009 by Shreenidhi

Bharatanatyam makes the body and even the mind agile. For any dancer it is very important to remember the Mudras, Hastas and Karnas the to perform the dance well. A performer needs to remember steps, names of the various steps, different moves, the beats and rhythm of the song. With all this a dancer has to pay attention if the body movements are in sync. This develops the mental skills and builds mental alertness.

Quality 6# Endurance

Posted in Bharatanatyam, dance, The 10 Qualities of Bharatanatyam on March 30, 2009 by Shreenidhi

Every student of Bharatanatyam understands the value of practice. With the lessons of Bharatanatyam comes a very important lesson of life that ‘Practice makes a man Perfect’. It is only regular dance practice that helps a student rise to a higher degree of performance. This builds endurance in a person and makes him ready to pursue perfection. This can even translate to an everyday life value. Whether, it is making an egg, achieving better grades or making a presentation, getting better becomes a habit.

Quality 5# The Glancing Eye

Posted in Bharatanatyam, dance, The 10 Qualities of Bharatanatyam on March 30, 2009 by Shreenidhi

The Perfect RASA

The Perfect RASA (Dissapointment)

In Sanskrit there is a saying called

Yatho Hastato Dhrishtihi,

Yatho Dhrishtisto Manaha,

Yatho Manatato Bhavaha,

Yatho Bhavastato Rasaha.


Where the Hands go, the Eyes should follow
Where the Eyes go, the Mind should follow
Where the Mind goes, the Emotions are generated
Where the Emotions are generated, Sentiment arises.

In the above saying the first two lines are very important. It has to be practised perfectly and sincerely. This needs a lot of  hard work. When this is done, the rest of the 2 lines  comes within ourselves automatically. And there arises the life of dance.  So, the eyes play a major role in dance.

Quality 4# Brahmari movement

Posted in Bharatanatyam, dance, The 10 Qualities of Bharatanatyam on February 28, 2009 by Shreenidhi

Circling movements or Brahmari movements are one of the important leg movements that one should practise. Practicing all circling movements regularly keeps you to have a perfect aramandi.

Quality 3# Rehka

Posted in Bharatanatyam, Blogroll, dance, The 10 Qualities of Bharatanatyam on December 7, 2007 by Shreenidhi

Now, i know you are thinking what rekha means and how it is related to dance. I’ll tell you. Rekha is an art of performing the dance on a huge stage. When we are giving a solo perform ens it is very essential to cover the whole stage and dance. You cant just use a corner of the stage and dance. When the stage is going to be small it is not a problem but when it is big, that too for a solo perform ens it is very very important that you move and use each and every part of the stage.There is also an disadvantage of dancing on a big stage ie., while dancing you can adjust your self move here and there and dance but there is one thing to keep in mind that all the finishings(ending) of each and every item should be done in the middle of the stage.  Sometimes while dancing we tend to loose our concentration, we will be thinking that we are in the middle but when we look at our photos, we come to know.:-) So, Rekha is very very important for a dancer.

Quality 2# Steadiness

Posted in Bharatanatyam, dance, The 10 Qualities of Bharatanatyam on June 27, 2007 by Shreenidhi

It is the ability to maintain the body, or a part of the body, in a fixed position, or the ability to perform a smooth movement without any deviations from the desired course. Steadiness is adversely affected by muscle tremor and usually decreases as the strength of muscle contractions increase. It is an important component of skills requiring very controlled, steady movements. The anxiety caused by competition sometimes results in the loss of steadiness. So, always you need to be calm and steady to learn such an art. You need to be very fast and quick while dancing at the same time very steady too.

Quality 1# Agility

Posted in Bharatanatyam, dance, The 10 Qualities of Bharatanatyam on June 21, 2007 by Shreenidhi

               It is the state or quality of being agile; nimbleness.

Agility is the ability to change body position rapidly and accurately without loosing balance. It  is the basic component of physical fitness. Although its exact nature has not determined, it depends on muscular power, reaction time, co-ordination, and dynamic flexibility. It can also be told as a component of physical fitness that describes changing the body’s direction with speed and precision. So for being flexible you need to exercise daily have a healthy diet and to practice dance daily.

10 Essential qualities for a dancer.

Posted in Bharatanatyam, dance, The 10 Qualities of Bharatanatyam on April 10, 2007 by Shreenidhi

Traditional dance forms require some common characteristics to be exhibited during the learning and exercising processes:

  3. REKHA.
  8. DEVOTION ( Towards the art ).
  9. SPEECH ( Clear ).

In the next few posts I am planning to explain these essential qualities of a dancer.


Posted in Bharatanatyam, dance on September 21, 2006 by Shreenidhi
  • Bharatnatyam is the Classical Dance style of Tamil Nadu.
  • Although we have a very ancient dancing tradition behind us, the form that we see at present with the new nomenclature is only about 50-60 years old (Bharatnatyam was still called as Sadir).
  • Bharatnatyam can be thought of as-consisting of 2 segments

Form (Grammar)
Content (Messages Conveyed)

  • On stage, a dancer has about 1 to 2 hours to express herself. She performs about 6-7 pieces where she conveys a certain grammatical framework.
  • The artist may want to convey a range of emotions – pathos, happiness, love, disgust (Bhava) and tell some intresting mythological anecdotes (Sanchari) – grammer of conveying this is Abhinaya.
  • All work and no plays makes jack a dull boy. All emotions and stories and no breaks can make a programme dull. The breaks are the Adavu.

Thus, adavu is very important for dance. Without adavu the dance cannot be completed.


Posted in Bharatanatyam, dance on July 21, 2006 by Shreenidhi

Much as it is true that the term Adavu is transalated as foot work, adavu is not a presentation limited to usage of the the feet. Every single limb of the body is coordinated in a certain style. The hands, legs, head etc constitute the major limbs. The simplest defenition of Adavu would be, basic unit of Bharatanatyam involving the whole body.

It is pretty easy to say that there rae about 65 adavus involving a range of movements. This would only put offan eager leaner for he or she might feel that the adavus are too many in number to be grasped easily. Let us have a brief look at a few core aspects of adavus that appear in almost every adavu.



    If this is mastered, half of Bharatanatyam is mastered! Now, this is no exaggeration because to master the right araimandi is quitean arduous and time consuming process. Initially, one will experiance a lot of pain in the knees and thighs but that will slowly settle down. Here are few points to remember.

    • Back straight (bending or stooping can crete a hunch-effect).
    • Height reduced by atleast 1/3rd.
    • Feet pointing to the opposite sides a nd placed horizolly
    • Hands firmly and and neatly placed on the hips.
    • Eyes straight.

    Students can start off by standing like this for 10secs, 20secs, 30secs and gradually improve it to 1min, 1.30secs etc.


    Standing straight, legs joined, eyes straight, hands on the hips. This may sound easy, but it is very important for a dancer. When a dancer is given rest in between the dance he/she should be in this position.


    This is a full seated position – perhaps the most painful one to grasp and reproduce. One tends to trip and lose balance many times in the initial stages. But it settles down slowly. Here too, the eyes must be focussed straight and the back is to be erect.


    4. Hands to the sides with a slight curve. Elbows to be erect and not to droop. This gesture is difficult causing quite some pain in the elbows. It is again practice; more importantly, practice with a positive mind that “ I am going to master this! “.

    5. Hands in the front of the chest. Elbows firm, eyes straight.

    It is these 3 major leg positions and 2 hand positions on which one builds on.

    So,  the next time you are watching a Bharatanatyam performance, I am sure it would be very easy to identify these 5 aspects that occure repeatedly.

    Starting from any of these as the base position, the adavu involves well-coordinated movement of the body.

    Since this is intended to be a concise volume in understanding the form of bharatanatyam, let us stop our discussion on Adavu presently and move on to the next concept. We shall certainly take on a detailed study of adavus later.