Venkat Raman –
The long-awaited Arangetram of Abhishek Ravi brought kudos to the teenager from more than 600 spectators at the Dorothy Winstone Centre, Auckland Girls Grammar School in Auckland City on Saturday, May 6, 2017.
Thirteen-year Abhishek has been trained for several years by his Guru Anuradha Kumar, Director & Principal of ‘Anuradha School of Indian Dances,’ who was also the ‘Nattuvanar,’ at his public debut.
Abhishek began his Arangetram with a three-piece item combining ‘Pushpanjali,’ ‘Allarippu’ and a ‘Stuti, dedicated to Lord Shiva or Lord Nataraja, the Lord of all Dances.
The ‘Padam,’ the third item of the Arangetram was a tribute to Hindu Gods Lord Krishna, Lord Murugan, Lord Buddha (Buddhism), Almighty Allah (Islam), Lord Jesus (Christianity). The essence of the number was the oneness of God, although worshipped through various religions.
The ‘Varnam,’ the longest item of a Bharata Natyam was tonight a Papanasam Sivam Composition called ‘Swami, Nan Undan Adimai.’
The song and dance denoted a devotee surrendering to Lord Shiva. This centre-piece of the Arangetram was marked for verses of piety, melodious music, impressive choreography and swift movements.
Abhishek demonstrated his ability to endure and execute a challenging item.
The second half of the programme comprised ‘Sharavanabhava Stuthi,’ a number eulogising Lord Murugan, ‘Ramaanjaneyar Padam,’ episodes of Ramayanam with Lord Hanuman as the centre-figure, ‘Chathur Bandhi,’ a quartet of Mridangam, Kanjeera, Vocal Percussion and the dancer’s footwork and ‘Thillana,’ which paid tribute to Lord Padmanabha, a form of Lord Vishnu.
Born and raised in a family dedicated to human traits of compassion, friendship, social networking and religious fervour, Abhishek evinced interest in performing arts early in his life but his passion for Bharata Natyam surfaced in 2011, when he was eight years old. Since then, he has not only been an ardent student of Ms Ramkumar, but also an enthusiastic participant in a number of solo and group events.
The Spiritual Guests
Earlier, Swami Anubhavananda, known as ‘The Smiling Swami,’ spoke about ‘Commitment’ as the prelude to success’ and extolled the dedication and commitment of Abhishek to Bharata Natyam.
There were also speeches by Vedanta Teacher Ananya Chaitanya who spoke about the Supreme state of ‘Shaivism’ which radiates the Power and Artistic Supremacy of Lord Shiva. and Mridangam artiste Suresh Ramchandra.
The highlight of the Programme is the Vocal support being rendered by Archana Ravi, sister of Abhishek. Other artistes included Anuradha Ramkumar (Natuvangam), NK Kesavan (Mridangam), Ganavenothan Retnam (Flute) and Saketh Ram Vishnubhotla (Veena).
- Abhishek Ravi presenting ‘Jatheeswaram’
- Abhishek Ravi in ‘Varnam’
(Pictures by Lion Beats, Auckland)