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Looking Forward To Nritya Kala- A Grand Bharthanatyam Performance

Chitra Parayath
09/08/2004

Directed by Sridevi Thirumalai The Natyamani School of Dance is a school of the Indian classical dance of Bharathanatyam. Senior students of the school present an elegant evening of Bharathanatyam on September 19th at the Keefe Tech Auditorium in Framingham. Musicians from India will accompany the dancers on stage; the choreography is by Guru Sridevi Thirumalai.

Sridevi Thirumalai was all praise for the hard work and dedication of her students; going on to say that the time she spends with these performers will be cherished by her for years to come.

We asked the students, all of them graceful and talented dancers, what the production meant to them.

Neha Garge : “"Dance has been a passion of mine since I started learning from Sridevi Aunty nearly 10 years ago. It has given me an outlet where I can seek peace, freedom, and happiness. Our upcoming performance has helped me improve as a performer, and has shown me what it takes to work as a part of a group. Above all, this experience has brought me much closer to my fellow dancers and my guru. I feel as if we started this journey as 9 classmates and a teacher, ending it as 10 members of a very special family."
Neha has been a student of Natyamani School of Dance since the age of 8 and is now 17 years old. In the fall of 2002, Neha successfully completed her Arangetram.

Isha Parulkar: “Nritya Kalai” has been, aside from a test of stamina and discipline, a great way in which we can combine our individual talents and perform as dancers and more importantly as friends. I am certain that the three months we spent in concentrating our efforts on this recital are nothing compared to the rewards, lessons, and lifetime experiences we will have gathered from it!”
Isha, 15, has been learning Bharatnatyam under her guru Smt. Sridevi Thirumalai for the past 8 years. A headmaster list student at Worcester Academy, Isha is part of various clubs and activities and enjoys volunteering in Hospitals and Nursing Homes in her spare time.

Swathi Maddula : “This experience has directly involved me with our culture,as well as teamwork, determination, respect, and fun. I greatly thank Sridevi Auntie for giving me the opportunity to participate in such an activity.”
Swathi has been learning Bharatanatyam from Smt. Sridevi Ajai Thirumalai since the age of six. She diligently completed her Arangetram in October of 2002. Swathi is an honors student at Shrewsbury High School and completed her Arangetram in October 2002.

Gayathry Sooriyakumar: “The Nritya Kalai program has been a very memorable experience. From the great choreography by my loving teacher Sridevi Aunty, to the intense yet inspiring dance practices, to the many jokes shared between some of the nicest and most gifted dancers and friends is all a girl could ever ask for.”
Gaya has been learning Bharathanatyam at the Natyamani School of Dance since the age of nine. Gayathry is a high honor roll student at Thayer Academy in Braintree Massachusetts and completed her arangetram in July 2004.

Sangita Keshavan:” Nritya Kalai has been such an invigorating experience. I haven't just learned dance, and though my skills have improved greatly, our group has become tighter, my relationship with Sridevi Aunty, stonger, and we have built bonds that can never break. “
Sangita has been a student of Smt. Sridevi Ajai Thirumalai since age six. Bharathanatyam has helped Sangita to further understand her rich culture. Sangita, 14, is a High School freshman.

Anunita Garg: “"Being a part of Nritya Kalai, and bharatnatyam itself, has been a life-changing experience. Apart from perfecting my dance skills, it has brought me closer my culture, my classmates, my teacher, and myself."
Anu has been dancing since she was 7 years old. She is 15 now, and has been learning from Sridevi for 6 years. Anu is a junior at Westborough High School.

Ahalya Kodali: “This performance is a beautiful collaboration of art, culture, and tradition that has given me a chance to show what dancing in India is all about!”
Ahalya Kodali has been a student of Sridevi Thirumalai at the Natyamani School of Dance for seven years. She will perform her arangetram in September 2004. Ahalya currently attends Ursuline Academy as a junior, where she is a high honor student.

Jyotsana Vinayak: “Through Bharathanayam I have gained a deeper understanding and Knowledge of our rich Indian culture. It is cool and awesome experience to learn from my Guru and dance with my friends.”
Jyotsna has been learning dance from Smt. Sridevi Ajai Thirumalai for the past seven years. Jyotsna is a junior at Ursuline Academy in Dedham, MA and will be performing her arangetram in September 2004.

Shivani Srivastava:"“Bharatnatyam has taught me hard work, discipline, creativeness, and the ability to believe in myself. I am honored to be learning from such a wonderful teacher and very thankful to Sridevi auntie for blessing me with such a gift.”
Shivani has been learning Bharatnatyam from Smt. Sridevi Thirumalai for the last eight years. Shivani had her Arangetram in 2001 at the age of ten. Shivani is a freshman at Thayer Academy in Braintree, MA.

Said Uma Keshavan, It is indeed a great privilege and honor for these kids to be involved in a project that is so dear to their hearts. As parents, we feel fortunate that our kids have an dance instructor who is so much more than that! Sridevi is an adult role model, a confidant, a friend, her students can rely on! Her dedication to her students is awe inspiring, let me recount an experience here. Last fortnight I was at a store at about nine in the night, catching up on back- to-school shopping when I spied Ajai and Sridevi Thirumalai in the store. Sridevi told me that they were there shopping for picture frames at that late hour as she was busy all day and wanted to make sure that they could surprise the students and their parents with framed photographs the next morning. All this even though she had not had a lunch break the whole day and was working solely on the basis of her morning meal! But again, that is Sridevi for you. She is the most wonderful role model I would wish my daughter to have...and you know I wish the absolute best for her!! This is a show that the students have all poured their entire souls into and I have to credit Sridevi for motivating them to do so.!"”

We, at lokvani.com wish these remarkble young ladies success in every field of life!

More information on Nrityakalai can be found at
http://webpages.charter.net/ajai/nsd.htm



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