Overview for Indian Classical Dance: Tradition in Transition
A sweeping look at the magnificence of Indian culture through its varied dance forms, Indian Classical Dance: Tradition in Transition is a tour de force through the forms, characteristics, challenges and changes occurring in traditional dance. At one level, it is a compendium of classical dance, an exploration of its moods and majesty, an ode to its sublime aesthetics. At another level, it is a stunning visual and scholarly portrayal of a pluralistic society teeming with cultural vitality. It is also a graphic appreciation of the human body, captured by the camera in moments of sheer grace, structured movement, cultivated expression and divine harmony. Bharatanatyam, Kathakali, Odissi, Kathak, Mohini Attam, Manipuri, Kuchipudi: this book is an exposition of these seven major dance forms â€“ their history, growth, decay and renewal right from the temple floor and kingly court to the modern stage. The future of the dances, their struggle for preservation, their need to keep in step with the rhythm of todayâ€™s speedier world are themes the author, one of Indiaâ€™s most respected dance critics, explores and tries to resolve. Brilliant photographs captured by the lens of Avinash Pasricha, undoubtedly the master of Indian dance photography, make the book as vibrant as the dances it presents. In its range, definitive appraisal and visual power, Indian Classical Dance: Tradition in Transition is the best there is in its genre.
Avinash Pasricha (Author)
Avinash Pasricha comes from a family of photographers. He, literally, grew up in a studio and became photo editor of SPAN magazine in New Delhi from 1960 to 1997. His photographs have been published in Life and National Geographic as well as in several books on India. He has specialized in Photography of the performing arts since 1960 and has co-authored books on Indian dance: on Odissi, Kathak, and Kuchipudi with dr. Sunil Kothari; one entitled Rhythm in Joy with dancer/writer Leela Samson; on Pandit Kumar Gandharva with critic Raghava Menon; and picture books on Pandit Birju Maharaj, Kumar Gandharva and Guru Kelucharan Mohapatra with Roli Books. Over the last forty-five years, he has covered a wide range of subjects, even making audio-visuals on Indian dance forms and on eminent musicians Bade Ghulam Ali Khan, Begum Akhtar and Kumar Gandharva.
Leela Venkataraman (Author)
Leela Venkataramanâ€™s career as a writer on dance began as the Dance Critic for the National Herald in 1980, after which she was with another daily, The Patriot. Selected as the Dance Critic for The Hindu when the paper began its Delhi edition fifteen years ago, she has been with the paper ever since, her Friday Review column earning a reputatioin for being the most incisive commentary on the dance scene in the capital. Widely traveled in India and abroad, she has participated in seminars and dance events like the international Seminar on Bharatanatyam in the Diaspora in Chicago, the North American Internationial Dance Seminar in Houston in 2001, the Binnels de is Danse at Lyons in 2000 and the Rukmini Devi festival in Malaysia. Leela Venkataraman has written extensively for journals in India and abroad, and is on the Delhi Bureau of SRUTI, a monthly journal published from Chennai. She was also on the Board of Management of the Kalakshetra Foundation for a full term. Among her publilcations are Bharatanatyam â€“ Step by step and A Dancing Phenomenon â€“ Birju Maharaj.