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Arangetram: Prerana Patil

Nikita Minocha

On July 11th, 2015, Prerana Patil completed her Bharatanatyam Arangetram.

An Arangetram is a solo-recital, representing a graduation after years of training. Bharatanatyam is a classical form, which combines expression, melodic pattern, and rhythm to tell a story through dance. As always, Prerana’s dancing left us speechless. The audience sat there with complete admiration of her devotion, effortless movements, and bright smile. Right from the beginning of the Anjali, prayer to the stage, we enjoyed each performance and never wanted the show to end. When Prerana reached the ‘Mangalam’, or auspicious ending, I was so proud of her for accomplishing such a difficult task. There were moments when I had tears in my eyes. And, I am sure the audience was just as mesmerized as I was.

The musicians brought the music and dance together as they shared their expertise. We were present in the moment and enjoyed every second of their beautiful melodies. The lead vocalist was Sri Babu Parameshwaran. Sri Prabhu Sriram was on the mridangam, on the flute, Sri Vinothkumar Soundar Rajan, and violinist, Sri Sunil Bhasker. Their music connected us to the dances. Ranjani Saigal, who is also my dance guru, led the event with energy. She formed yet another successful Arangetram.

As a highlight, Prerana was amazing in her ‘Varnam’. The Varnam is the most complicated piece in a Bharatanatyam repertoire and combines difficult expressions with pure dance steps. Prerana’s Varnam conveys a Nayika’s love to Lord Karthikeya. The item consisted of many mature expressions and complicated movement but she performed each aspect with ease.

The audience was also awestruck by the piece,“Jhansi ki Rani”. This item used excerpts of the famous poem in Hindi by Subhadra Kumari Chauhan, which describes the warrior queen of Jhansi, Rani LaxmiBai. The queen set the context of the first freedom struggle of 1857. Prerana truly felt the story and replicated it with her presence on stage. The choreography included movements of wars and Prerana executed them very well. I was captivated by the message behind the dance.

Prerana dedicated her Arangetram to Ekal Vidyalaya (www.ekal.org). Ekal is a service organization, bringing education to children in villages of rural India. The organization has over 54,000 schools with a population of 1.5 million students. Volunteers work tirelessly to establish development in these remote villages, through the power of education. Many of us are blessed with knowledge and success in our lives. Prerana helped make a difference for others.

We are all very lucky to be surrounded by such incredible teachers, dancers, and most importantly, friends. The dance community has a strong bond and this was reflected by the overwhelming support that Prerana received on her Arangetram day. I have known Prerana since I was seven years old, when we first started learning Bharatanatyam from Ranjani Auntie. Now she has completed her Arangetram, graduated high school, and is an outstanding person. I am grateful to have her in my life and I will always love watching her dance.

Congratulations to Patil family on a brilliant Arangetram by Prerana!

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