Posts Tagged ‘Narendra Kumar’


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Vidya Dinakaran


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Excerpt from an article in The Hindu dated January 2, 2009

Double impact

Savitha Gautam


Two is company. Especially for some on whom the Margazhi spotlight has fallen over the years, be it in the field of music or dance. The Dhananjayans, the Reddys and Narasimhachari-Vasanthalakshmi have paved the way for many others to follow. The Margazhi Vizha has, over the years, thrown up some very talented pairs. Here are a few who have made a mark:

Narendra Kumar and Anusha: A show for ABHAI brought them together. “At least that’s the first time we noticed each other, though were both students at Bharata Kalanjali,” laughs Anusha. “I admired his choreographic skills and was too happy when he asked me to participate in ‘Kalinga Narthana’ thillana.” Narendra laughs when he remembers how he choreographed a Meera bhajan for the two of them. “Now, I do the scripting and concept, while he concentrates on choreography,” says Anusha. “The couple who ‘find joy in dancing together’ are in totally sync, on and off the stage.

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Form differs, not the content


The Anusham group presented `Shakthi,’ with perfect co-ordination, accurate timing and discipline.

L. Narendra Kumar first shot to fame some years ago with an exciting group choreography of the Kalinga Narthana tillana. Since then, he has remained on the horizon, stretching the boundaries of art and choreography with varying degrees of success.

This season, Anusham group, led by Narendra Kumar and Anusha, presented `Shakthi,’ a thematic work on the Mother Goddess.

The endeavour was to present a traditional idea with predominantly traditional hymns, from a non-traditional perspective. That’s why the presentation differed in form, but not in content.

With the total absence of narrative, symbolism was the operative tool of communication. It was a contradiction in terms, really because this choreography celebrated the sheer physicality of movement without detracting from the seriousness of the imagery.

It is always a risk to employ devotional prayers, but in the present case, the choreographers came out unscathed simply because they did not tamper with the aura of solemnity.

The Gayathri Mantra, the Saraswati sloka, the Mahalakshmi Ashtotram, the step-by-step shodasopachara puja and the Mantra Pushpam were used in different parts of the presentation, each properly recited and sensitively captured in a visual medium.
Besides an opening homage to Gayathri Devi, the manifestations of Shakti as Durga, Lakshmi and Saraswati formed the core illustrations.

The dancers — Anamika, Poornema, Vidya Madhubala, Vidyalakshmi, Gayathri, Tiruchelvam, Guhendran, Narendra Kumar and Anusha — dressed in simple white cotton costumes and adorned with silver jewellery, excelled with their perfect co-ordination, accurate timing and discipline. The tightly-knit choreography was bound together by crisp passages of nritta, not dramatically stirring, yet effective in their very precision.
Poetic resonance

Moments of poetic resonance and friezes were pegged efficiently by the additional lighting by Nambu Kumar.

The music composition and the veena accompaniment were by Rajhesh Vaidya, the konnakkol and sollus by L. Narendra Kumar, percussion by N. K. Kesavan and Sudaman and vocal by Haricharan and Bhavatharini. Within the framework of the production, there were winds blowing from different directions. The Shakthi Kauthuvam composed by S. Guhendran juxtaposed the divine mother and her mortal counterpart in finely crafted wording. The same theme replayed through a poignant

A.R. Rehman composition, “Uyirum Neeye” conveyed the essence of the production in a powerful finale.

While the gurus’ generosity can be appreciated, it was a disappointment for the audience when Narendra Kumar and Anusha’s disciple, Kavita Venkateswar, took centre stage that evening to present a full margam before the staging of `Shakthi.’ The 15-year-old from San Antonio is also a disciple of Bana Ramnath and the Dhananjayans, and is a good dancer, bright-faced and lively.

The lilting Lathangi varnam in Adi talam, a composition of Madurai R. Muralidharan brought out Kavita’s felicity with story telling and rhythm.

She requires some changes in posture though. Definitely a student to be proud of.

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Anusham logo

Anusham is the brain child of Narendra Kumar. Anusham, the seed or ‘beeja’ has been nurtured by the creativity and undaunted efforts of Narendra Kumar, his wife Anusha, and their friends, from myriad disciplines of dance, theatre, music, martial and visual arts.


Narendra Kumar

Narendra Kumar is an early student of the Dhananjayans. He has earned a name for himself as a skilled Bharata Natyam dancer and choreographer. Eager to explore different dimensions in dance, he has studied martial arts such as Kalaripayyattu, Silambam and Tai-Chi. He has his dance establishment Anusham and is a teacher, choreographer and performer, along with his wife Anusha. He travels to the US often to work with dancers/choreographers and to aid them in their productions.

Anusha Narendra Kumar

Anusha Narendra Kumar is a disciple of the Dhananjayans and is well known as an excellent exponent of Bharata Natyam. She is the wife of Narendra Kumar and they are gaining a reputation as a skilled dancing couple. She is a teacher in their school “Anusham” and they also work with dancers in the US conducting classical dance workshops and assisting in choreography. She won audience appreciation and critical acclaim for her performance in Living Tree. She is also earning a name as a fine visual artist.


More about the Anusham Dance Group, Anusha Narendra Kumar and L. Narendra Kumar

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