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A Kuchipudi dance recital that portrays the character of Satyabhama, Krishna’s wife

A solo Kuchipudi recital by Bhavana Reddy, today, is based on Satyabhama, one of the wives of Lord Krishna.

art and culture Updated: Aug 31, 2017 11:09 IST
Henna Rakheja
Henna Rakheja
Hindustan Times
Kuchipudi,Bhavana Reddy,Raja Reddy
Bhavana Reddy, Kuchipudi dancer.

When Satyabhama — one of the wives of Krishna— expects that the Lord stays with just her and no one else, there ensues a quarrel. This husband-wife relationship tussle has been the basis of an extremely popular Kuchipudi dance-drama, BhamaKalāpam, and will be presented by dancer Bhavana Reddy.

“It’s said that the lifespan of a Kuchipudi dancer’s career is incomplete if she doesn’t play Satyabhama. So, I’m extremely excited for this performance,” says Bhavana, recollecting how this performance used to be presented in the old times. “The scholars had introduced a sutradhar (narrator) named Madhavi, to add a comic element in the presentation and cater to the popular interest.”

The choreography that Bhavana will perform on is by renowned Kuchipudi exponent Raja Reddy, who travelled to a village in Andhra Pradesh to learn the ancient tradition of Bhama Kalāpam from his guru Vendantam Prahlada Sarma. He then taught his disciples and daughters this traditional art.

Bhavana once performed a chapter from this dance-drama: “I was studying in Lady Shri Ram College for Women (LSR), in 2011, when I performed one episode from BhamaKalāpam,” says the young danseuse, who will perform the piece in 2017 now. “I recently had a foot injury and after recovering, this will be my first performance. I feel honoured to be able to perform this dance recital and am looking forward to the audience reaction,” she says, with a visible excitement in her voice.

Catch It Live
  • What: BhamaKalāpam
  • Where: Kamani Auditorium, Mandi House
  • When: August 31
  • Timings: 7pm
  • Nearest Metro Station: Mandi House on Blue Line

First Published: Aug 31, 2017 11:09 IST