Coinciding with Republic Day, one of India’s three national holidays and one dedicated to celebrating our democratic Constitution, the talented dancers of Rasik Performing Arts presented its annual show in Epicentre, Gurgaon. For our dancers, Prayas 2016 was a culmination of a year’s learning under the gracious guidance of Guru Jayashree Acharya.
The blessed presence of Pandit Birju Mahahrajji at our show filled the atmosphere with a special electric charge. We all felt it and we hope our performances did justice to his great art and all-encompassing love and mentorship. Over 85 young dancers performed under Rasik’s banner during the evening, bringing a variety of items to a packed hall of rasiks and well wishers.
We were also honoured to have guests artists, dancers from Aakriti Foundation trained under Smt Sushmita Ghosh and eminent instrumental musicians Madhu Gopal, Goutam, Sunnu and Shiv Shankar perform at Prayas 2016.
Catch a few glimpses from Prayas 2016 below. We will post videos soon!
In July 2015, Guru Jayashree Acharya and her students were invited to perform at the Nehru Centre in London. Jayashreeji is no stranger to London’s cultural afficionados, having taught at the Bharatiya Vidya bhawan in London for many years. Many who knew her welcomed her re-entry on London’s stage with great joy.
Accomplished and confident, the four young dancers- Mahika Nair, Shubhangini, Anandi Ray and Mahika Zutshi- enthralled the audience with their impeccable tayyari and confidence. Their presentation of items typical of the Lucknow gharana was a visual treat for London’s kathak lovers.
Scroll down for videos of Jayashreeji’s TV interview
Taking kathak from the hallowed spaces of the auditoria and academies to the streets is no mean achievement. Four enthusiastic young girls, under the guidance of their guru Jayashree Acharya, did just that at Raahgiri, Gurgaon’s celebration of car-free streets every Sunday.
Their short but beautiful kathak performance on the occasion of International Women’s Day was appreciated by a large crowd from different walks of life. Many were watching kathak for the very first time. Read a more detailed account here.
On 29th January 2015, Jayashree Acharya and Barun Banerjee performed at the prestigious Kathak Mahotsav at Kamani Auditorium, New Delhi to a packed hall of true rasiks.
Continuing the tradition of inviting renowned and talented artists to the studio, Rasik Performing Arts organised a two-day workshop with famous kathak exponent Deepak Maharaj on 13th and 14th September 2014. Deepakji taught over 75 students, from the youngest who were beginners to older students who had been initiated into the kathak journey for a few years. An intense experience, students learnt some fine nuances, unusual compositions and participated in a rare informal interactions with some of the brightest artistic minds in the country. Some immediate impressions are recorded here on a student’s personal blog.
Shrimati Roshan Datye, eminent and senior disciple of renowned guru Late Smt Rohini Bhate came from Pune to teach at the Gurgaon studio. Over two days, on 19th & 20th October 2013, Roshanji taught three batches of students, ranging in age from about seven all the way up to 40! She taught all three batches distinct stage-appropriate compositions. Her attention to detail, an emphasis on theoretical aspects of the dance form and her innate ability to be a robust communicator brought immense value to the kathak journey of participants. What was of particular value was the introduction of a distinct style and therefore an opportunity to expand the vocabulary of dance.
Students of Jayashree Acharya were blessed by the presence of Pandit Birju Maharajji on 14th October 2013. Maharajji spoke at length about nuances of kathak and presented numerous examples of how kathak is drawn from simple everyday actions and emotions. Students presented a few pieces and Maharajji also taught some short compositions. The brightness of his personality is unforgettable to all who were present.