Day 2 of GKCM Award Festival: Kathak, Hindustani Vocal enthrall viewers



The second evening of 29th Guru Kelucharan Mohapatra Award Festival 2023 commenced with the lighting of the lamp by the chief guests Sudhi Ranjan Mishra, Head, Corporate Affairs, Paradeep Phosphates Limited;
Shri Manoj Sharma, General Manager, East Coast Railway; Pandit Lakshmikant Palit,
Eminent Music Composer and Singer; and Guru Ratikant Mohapatra, Festival Director.

The programme commenced with a solo Kathak dance recital by Shila Mehta, renowned Kathak exponent of the Lucknow Gharana and the founder-director of Nupur Zankar Academy of Performing Arts and Research Centre, Mumbai. She was accompanied on the live orchestra by Sunando Mukherjee on the Sarod, Vivek Mishra and Amitesh Kumar Brahma on the Tabla, and Shri Jaydeep Sinha on Vocals.
Her recital comprised three eclectic and beautiful dance presentations that stayed true to the integrity of her Gharana.

Commencing with the powerful Shiva Stuti, the dance and music composition of which were directed by her Guru, the renowned Pt. Vijay Shankar, Shila Mehta later moved on to an eclectic Bhava Tihai in Teen Taal, illustrating pure nritya sequences characteristic to Kathak, portraying Gopucha—the gaits of different animals,
representing the rhythmic flow and ebb of the waves of the ocean through the movement oeuvre of Kathak, and bringing life to the bhava of the episode of Sita Haran from the Ramayana.

In the style of the legendary maestro Pt. Birju Maharaj, the incredible vitality of
life was brought to the fore through the subtleties and nuances of the Kathak idiom as Shila Mehta’s years of experience immensely enhanced the aesthetics of the performance.

Her third and final presentation was Geetasara, the epic dialogue between Lord Krishna and Arjuna and the episode of the Vishwarupa Darshana. This exploration into the divine vision thhat Arjuna was bestowed with was a befitting finale to the dance recital.

The synchronous musical accompaniment, dramatic lighting, and appealing stage effects added to the climax of this composition.

The second recital for the evening was by feted Hindustani Vocalist and torchbearer of the Kirana Gharana, Shri Jayateerth Mevundi with Anushula More on the Harmonium and Narahari V. on the Tabla, whose musical accompaniment added great depth to Shri
Jayateerth Mevundi’s harmonious surrender to the divine on the auspicious occasion of
Krishna Janmashtami. With a diverse spread of bhajans and presentations in obeisance to the endearing Lord Krishna, Jayateerth Mevundi’s absolute Bhakti enraptured the audience, who were captivated till the very end by his mellifluous voice.

The third evening will feature a Bharatanatyam solo by the renowned Shri P. Praveen Kumar, known for his technical virtuosity and inspiring professionalism. This will be followed by the Sitar recital of Shri Niladri Kumar, acclaimed world-over for his stellar Sitar performances and his pioneering work on the Zitar.

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