By Erin Crowell
Many professional dancers center their lives around their craft; but
its nothing compared to the complete dedication of the Nrityagram
dancers the international dance ensemble from Southern India that
performs some of the most ancient and classical dance forms of the
The Nrityagram Dance Ensemble will bring its holistic performance to the
Dennos Museum Center, in Traverse City, on March 20.
The idea behind the Nrityagram program is to provide its students with
a complete understanding of the philosophy that a good dancer is
second only to being a good human being. Its an idea rooted in the
Gurukul Tradition, that students are provided everything from their
Guruwhich, for the Nrityagram dancers, includes teachings in Indian
literature, mythology, poetry, music aesthetics and spiritual dance
theoryand, in turn, the students provide care to their Guru through
A WAY OF LIFE
In other words, the Nrityagram dancers are fully dedicated to their
craft, and the dance institute (being their guru), is totally
dedicated to their development.
At Nrityagram, dance is a way of life, a matter of faith and belief,
nurtured and enriched by the souls of its own people, said Protima
Audiences can expect to see several dance variations, including:
Odissi, the oldest form of Indian dance; the sensuous and feminine
Mohiniattam,; Kathak, the tradition of story telling; Kathakali, a
religious dance-drama; and Manipuri, a martial arts type repertoire.
The New York Times called the ensemble, One of the most luminous
dance events of the year they performed with a burnished grace, a
selfless concentration and a depth that reflected their intensive
training in dance, music, literature, language and philosophy.
Dont miss your opportunity to see this performance, held Saturday,
March 20, in Milliken Auditorium, beginning at 8 p.m. Tickets are $25
in advance; and $28 at the door. Visit dennosmuseum.org or call the
box office at 995-1553.
Further your Indian education with the exhibit Larry K. Snider:
Photographing India, held Sunday, March 21, at 2 p.m. Snider, a
photographer who has traveled the world for 30 years, focuses on the
city of Varanasi, which is situated on the west bank of the Ganga
River and is considered the most sacred of Indias seven holy
cities. See images that document the people and landscape of this
The cost to attend is regular museum admission ($6 for adults; and $4
for children). Visit dennosmuseum.org for more information.
Also of note: Ron Somers, president of the U.S.-India Business Council
will present Game Changers: Indias First Decade of the 21st Century
in Milliken Auditorium, on March 18. The presentation is part of the
International Affairs Forum, a monthly program featuring experts in
the areas of politics, media and other affairs. Program starts at 6
p.m. Tickets, $10. Call 231-995-1027.