Mallika's Arangetram

Tuesday, February 28, 2006

Mallika's dance at Tandav

Your dance at Tandav was very, very nice and vastly improved in many ways.

Your positioning looks excellent, though it seemed you are trying too hard with your face. Go back to your classes at Blue Lake and remember sense memory acting... we have to find some sense memory that will trigger the right responses for nritta, so your basic expressions yield the excitement that your storytelling gives us.

If you relax and give yourself as an instrument to the divine, as you often do... you will feel the pure connectivity, and you will not need to compete to prove yourself, because at that point you will laugh out loud with the realization that there is no self for competition to exist.

Remember, these dance positions are atoms and molecules being put to work in certain sacred geometric shapes, while the heating and unheating of your body as you move, cause your molecular composition to take on other chemical reactions with your universe... sharing, in effect, your self with your surroundings - so how do you compete with another when you are them? Which brings me to the topic that dance always raises in my soul... is God the largest thing or the smallest thing in the universe? From the descriptions given, He would be within and all around outside us... the only thing that does that is a tiny quark within every molecule that exists. That means the swarms of molecules that work in unison to create matter from nothing dance to become us as long as we think we exist... and if reality is a hologram, then each part of our cells reflect the whole universe as it exists... sort of like if a mirror broke, all the little shards, still reflect a whole you. That's the key to how DNA works, anyway.

A lot to think about, I know. Why do I raise physics when I speak about dance? I feel that all the myths, and the precision of the steps we take all point to this dance being some kind of a key to an outside universal force.

I mean, listen to the story of Siva's earring, which i raised in the Tandav recital, when the earring fell: When Siva danced, his earring fell and as it hit the earth 4 times, it made the original rhythms of music - Ta dit tom and num. Then as he raised it from the ground with his toe, he lifted the foot to reach the earring to his hand and replaced it on his ear, melting his hand back to pataka in the abhayam position. That is the origin of Siva's nataraja pose.

Why is it that in Ancient India, Ancient Greece and Ancient Egypt - art, dance and music were regarded with such precision? In India, some things are still "right" and "wrong" with regard to dance. How is such a subjective thing given such rules to live by? My argument is that aesthetics is clearly linked to precise geometric shapes, the same ones reflected in a sliced sound wave, or in a snowflake or in a drop of water as it responds to its surroundings, or in a heartbeat, or in a leaf or tree trunk... these are all universal sacred shapes, so Sadir or Bharata Natyam, the dancer can find herself in a trance if she stops thinking about the rules, but lets go so the shapes can automatically occur.

Good luck... Balance your practice with meditation now. See you soon.

Friday, February 24, 2006

Ganapathi, Karthikeya and Nataraja Kavuthwams

Just for reference in the future.... Here are our fave lyrics:

Ganapathi Kavuthwam

dit dit tai, taam dit dit tai.. tat ta ta tat ta ta taam tat tat
kutha kiTTa kiNa tonga Duckoo taam tonga
tangukku tangukku tangukku deem ta
kutha kiTTa kiNa tonga Duckoo taam tonga
taa tangi, tangi, kiTataka dikku taam, tat tat
tirikiTa tomtom kukkundari dikkiTTakiTataka dikkittonga
tirikiTa tomtom kukkundari dikkiTTakiTataka dikkittonga

aruthiru marugane vighnavinaayaka vinaykeDa aruLiya ganapathi jai jai

deekiTTa udaraka Dann, kiNNam, tadikkai tudikkai yaannai mughatthavar

tongiTakiTataka tongutakka devargal ganapathi
dikkiTakiTataka dikkitonga ganapathi kavuthwam kaTravar vinayara

ukkuDDu taam ukkuDDu tai, takku dikku takkiTTa

tomkiTakiTataki Dann,, tangi, kiTataka dikku taam tat tat ta

Karthikeya Kavuthwam

janna kiTTa kirra kiTTa takkuDu dikkuDu tarikiTa taam
takkuDu dikkuDu takundari kiTataka ta-kun-da-ri- ki-Ta-ta-ka

vinayara velvangum perumaan aDiyinai thozhu maname

jagga jagga tonguDu nanguDu tomkiTakiTataki toh-gu, naangu, tat tat tom....

tom... tat, tat,

toh kiTataka Toh kiTataka tokuDu toh toh kiTataka
toh kiTataka Toh kiTataka tokuDu toh toh kiTataka
tonakiTakiTataka - nan,kukutaari, kiNaNakaNakajaka jakutaam

Gana mayileri kailaasam thanai shuzhalavarum ilayavane tozhuvai

talaviDambara uDaiyavane,,

jhekuDu jhanakiTa jhanakiTa jhanakiTa kirrataki
jhekuDu jhanakiTa jhanakiTa jhanakiTa kirrataki
jhanakiTa kirrataki
kaDal kizhiya malai murriya varu Murugan arulpetr gadiyedum peralaam
takkiTataka takkiTataka takkuDu tat takkiTataka
takkiTataka takkiTataka takkuDu tat takkiTataka

tomkiTa kiTataki Dann...

tangi, kiTataka dikku taam tat tat

Natesa Kavuthwam

deem... deem....

takadimi dimitadimita taka tirikuDDu taam tirikuDDu tai tirikuDDu tat
darri darri kiTataka tat deem,, tat deem,, tat tat deem ta taam

tadavana munijana sakkala suraasura sannuta paada
kinkkiNi jom jom
jhanna jhanna jhanna jhanna nupura layagati
gaNa gaNa gaNa gaNa vidihari sevita
takkuDu dikkuDu tankundari kiTataka taam ta ta

takkiTa kiTataka tarikkiTa kiTataka tanDaviDambara
dikkiTa kiTataka tirikkiTa kiTataka vyaagrama samhara
tomkiTa kiTataka tonakiTataka tree- shoo-ladhara
nankiTakiTataka naganum kiTataka nandivahana nadayogapriya

jagganam kiTataka jagganam kiTataka tooga tooga tooga tai

jaga jaga jaya jaya shashi-ravibhushana roopa bhayankara
Damarugahasta,, triteeya, sahasra deekshitanaadar natesha kavuthwame

taka taka taam, digi digi deem,
takku dikku takkiTa tomkiTa kiTataki Dann...

tangi kiTataka dikku taam tat tat...

Monday, September 05, 2005

Varnam Jathis (in adavus)

Here are the adavus i learned for my varnam:

1st Jathi
slow boom-that thai tha ha (straight step)
fast boom-straight step
fountain(thaka thakita)
diagnol(thakita thakita)
washing machine(fast)
around the world
slide 2 back-mrigashirasum
jump to corner t-tddt 2x (overhead)
ddt ddt t-tddt
saamie ninne kori yunnanura

2nd Jathi
thakita thakadhimi
washing machine
straight step (that thai tha ha 1-2-)
rockets fast
ttddt ttddt ttddt tai
tai ttddt ttddt ttddt tai
jump jump ttddt ttddt ttddt

3rd Jathi
thakita thakadhimi
1st adavu in group 5-teacup R and L
5th adavu in group 2 w/ ddt @ end R and L
1/2 machine
thaka thakita
sraight step
tai yum that tha (eyelevel) R and L
thai hat thai hi thai hat thai hi
jump LR tddt(front2back)
jump RL tddt
jump LR tddt

4th Jathi
thai hat thai (2x) thai hat dt(slide) R and L
tha thai thai tha R and L
1/2 rockets
jump forward
thakita thakita
walk back to R corner 4x
jump(single jump)
jump LR

5th Jathi
that thai tha ha thai (5th adavu in group2) -full st circle-ttddt (front2back) R and L
jump step ddt tai- leap R leap L- ttddt
4x back to R corner (thakita)
jump LR
ttddt 1-2-ddt pause
entire thing R L R

Friday, September 02, 2005

sri ragam varnam notes - mallika

hi vidya chechi,
here are the words for the jathis for sriraagam varnam, (1, 2 and 5)

Varnam: Sreeragam
Talam: Adi
Jathi #1
Slow pace
Thaa ritha ritha kinna thaka naka jum jum
Tatha ritha ritha kinna thaka naka jum ta jum
Medium pace
Thaa ritha ritha kinna thaka naka jum jum
Ritha ritha kinna thaka naka jum jum
Thatha ritha ritha kinna thaka naka jum jum
Ritha ritha kinna thaka naka jum jum
Thaa ritha ritha kinna thaka naka jum jum
Ritha ritha kinna thaka naka jum jum
Thatha ritha ritha kinna thaka naka jum jum
Ritha ritha kinna thaka naka jum jum
Taa ritha naka jum
Tada ritha naka jum
Tadin naka dit taa
Kitataka tarikitatom
Tadin naka dit taa
Kitataka tarikitatom
Tadin naka dit taa
Kitataka tarikitatom
Jathi #2
Ta ri tha thana thaka
Thanatha jonu thaka
Jonu ta dimi taka
Dimi takita thaka
Tari thaka thana thaa
Thana thaka jonu thai
Jonu taka dimi taa
Dimi taka kita thai
Tharitha thanatha jonutha dimitha tha
Tadinginatom Tadinginatom Tadinginatom tha
Thanka Tadinginatom Tadinginatom Tadinginatom tha
Thaka dhika Tadinginatom Tadinginatom Tadinginatom tha
Jathi #5
Tat tat taka tat dhim
Tharithana jonu dimi
Tha dhimmitakita taka dhim
Tari taka jonu dhimi
Tha tha taka tat dhim
Tharitha thanatha
Tha dimmita kitataka dhim
Thonu tha jonutha
Tha ta dhim taka ta dhim
Jonu ta dhim dhimi ta dhim
Tat tat dhim
Ta dhing kin na tom
Thaa dingkinnatom
Ta dhing kin na tom
Thaa dingkinnatom
Ta dhing kin na tom
Thaa dingkinnatom
i hope i got them right, i'm writing down the adavus next

Wednesday, August 24, 2005

Mallika's HW 1

These are Mallika's responses to the Meet Joe Black exercise. Good job Mallika. We will explore the physical rendition of a character with the next assignment, the Radha one. I will wait to hear from you on that as well.

Post follows.

hi vidya chechi,
i finished seeing meet joe black the other day and i had to actually watch it twice to figure out the difference between characters. the difference was obvious but it was hard to place exactly what it was. the original brad pit seemed like a guy who talked a LOT! also he was very happy-go-lucky and took everything in stride. he seemed to know exactly what to say and was really smooth. his smile was that of almost like a little kid and his eyes were always twinkiling. his walk and manner was very care-free and careless.
When Death had the body the most obvious difference was that when he smiled the smile didnt reach his eyes. his eyes were really cold. also his walk was really jaunty and stiff and he didnt move his arms almost like an autistic person. everything he did was slow and deliberate. his smile and his eyes were very secretive and gaurded. he always had a gaurded _expression. also he had this strangely eerie calm manner that unnerved almost everyone in the movie. he also didnt take no as an answer and had an aura of power around him. you could tell he wasnt normal. everything was like he was doing it for the first time (which it was) and he always seemed placid but preoccupied.
overall it was a a very well done movie. the way that brad pitt managed to switch roles so fast was really cool.i recomend that alot of people should see this movie.
well i'm working on the radha assignment next and also sudha aunty has asked me to a write-up on the arangetrem i went to yesterday. i'll send that to u too.
until then bye

Tuesday, August 16, 2005

Hi there... from San Jose

Hi Mallika, Malini, Hari, Sree and all you fans closely following Mallika's graduation prep program online. Well, I am sort of settled here now and spent a few minutes reviewing some of the things we should start doing right away.

1. Mallika, you should type up the existing notes you have for the dances you know and are working on for the final show... send them to my email and I will post them here. That way, musicians can get a jump on understanding the choreography too.

2. The repertoire discussion continues... I realize that, however, it will suit us to begin posting them so everyone can evaluate and argue... for a final selection.

3. Mallika -- watch Meet Joe Black. Explain the difference between the two Brad Pitts in the movie.

4. Compare Sean Penn's acting in these two movies: Sam I Am, and The Interpreter. Both are stellar pieces for him and the female characters. But he plays two completely different types of beings. How does he use his body to envelope the behavior of another being? Discuss this on the blog.

5. Begin to read online about Radha. Who was she? What did she want? Where did she live? What kind of family life does mythology say she had? Why was she compelled (in a non-spiritual, very earthly way) emotionally and physically to connect with Krishna? Discuss this. We will use the human emotions to study her simple tactile complaints in Sancharadadhara.

That's all for now. Good luck. Will wait to hear from you.


Friday, August 05, 2005

Welcome, Everyone

Hi, Mallika, Malini, Hari, Shree... and all of you who are checking out what the latest is with Mallika's Arangetram. Mom and I have a running notebook, in which we record ideas and then discuss how to tackle issues. In this way, we are finding it easier to come to terms with item decision, ragam and talam determinations, etc.

Remember, when Hindu Temple Rhythms our school, puts an arangetram repertoire together, the portfolio is reviewed over and over to include a balance of items including:
  • traditional placement of authentic items
  • authors
  • deities
  • ragams
  • talams
  • themes
  • costume changes
  • varied instrumentations
  • singers
  • and more!
We are closer to finalizing all of these elements with Mallika, also highlighting her strength in abhinaya or dramatic expression.

We have determined to meet (Mallika and I, Vidya) on a regular Friday schedule with a Sunday backup in case of change. Malini is thankfully counting the days down.

Last week I reviewed with Mallika what the daily exercises (dailies) would be. As the nickname implies, these are to be done - daily.

More news after tonight's session.