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Famous South Indian Classical Dance Forms

We all accept that Indian classical dance forms are originated from diverse parts of the country and it is firmly rooted in the Sanskrit Hindu text called Natya Shastra.  In Indian culture, classical dance plays an important role as it helps reflect the mythological stories from time to time. Today, the Indian classical dance forms and its uniqueness is well established.

South Indian Classical Dance

When it comes to classical dance, there are 8 classical dance forms in India that recognized by the Ministry of Culture and Sangeet Natak Akademi. Among all, deeply ingrained in South Indian culture, the four famous South Indian classical dance forms are:
1. Mohiniyattam
2. Kathakali
3. Kuchipudi
4. Bharatanatyam
.

Mohiniyattam: Mohiniyattam is one of the most famous classical dance form, named after the Hindu mythological female avatar of Lord Vishnu, Mohini. This famous South Indian classical dance is originated from the state of Kerala and it is generally performed by women in temples of Kerala and in the royal courts in ancient times.  On the other hand, Mohiniyattam is by and large considered as a semi- classical dance form and it slightly resembles Bharatanatyam. This dance form is known for its enchanting elegance’s, aesthetic movements, and stunning ensembles.

Bharatanatyam: The well-known dance form which is deeply rooted in the South Indian culture, Bharatanatyam was originated in the Hindu temples of Tamil Nadu. This dance form is extremely rich in terms of history and and it is believed to be more than 2000-year-old. The world renowned dance form, Bharatanatyam is a solo dance performed exclusively by women,  focused on Hindu religious themes and spiritual ideas.

 Bharatanatyam is a solo dance

Kathakali: Originated in the 17th century from the South Indian state of Kerala, Kathakali is India’s one of the most famous classical dance-drama form. This dance form is renowned for its illustrious style, alongside heavy costumes and makeup that is combined with painted masks and huge headdresses. This famous South Indian classical form is an inspiration from the mythical story of Ramayana and the stories from Shaiva traditions. On the other hand, Kathakali’s vocal execution has customarily been Sanskritised Malayalam and it is commonly performed by men (even for the role of a female).

Kuchipudi: India’s one of the most famous dance-drama art forms, Kuchipudi is named after a village in Krishna district of Andhra Pradesh. Originated from the same district, this dance form was believed to be found in copper inscriptions of the 10th century. Today, it is a classical dance form devoted in favor of Lord Krishna and it is deeply rooted in the ancient Hindu Sanskrit textual content of Natya Shastra. Kuchipudi has three influential figures – Vedantam Lakshminarayana Sastri, Vempati Venkatanarayana Sastri, and Chinta Venkataramayya.

Image Source: Freepik

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