Chi. Aathira Chennat, the younger daughter of Sri Jayan and Smt Anitha Chennat performed her Bharatanatyam arangetram successfully and with aplomb, last Saturday, July 21st at Saline High School, Saline MI.
Jayan and I used to be colleagues at Ford Motor Company and used to car pool some times. Aathira was 3 or 4 years old. I remember stopping at her pre-school to pick her up on the way back from our office. She used to be such a bundle of irrepressible energy that it used to take Jayan a good 10 minutes just to buckle her into the child seat in the car.
I started to write this as a proper technical review of the dance. But to be honest with you, there is not much to write. I won't say Aathira executed everything perfectly, but that is beside the point. If she stays with the dance, I am sure she will polish some of the rough spots, will be more fluid and elegant overall. All that will come. But what I really want to talk about is this marvelous transformation. Growing up in this foreign land, with demanding schedules of academics and other extra curricular activities, how do these kids find the energy and time to learn this beautiful dance form. How did that little bundle of energy who was literally bouncing off the walls evolve into this composed and graceful dancer, with excellent control over mood and movement. I know Aathira has an excellent example in her accomplished elder sister, Ashwathy. Yet still I wonder - it is amazing.
Congratulations, Aathira and God bless you! Keep dancing in grace.
I credit three people - maatru devo bhava, pitru devo bhava, aacharya devo bhava!
Thank you, our humble thanks to the three of you for producing this little gem called Aathira.
Mudakaratha Modakam, Hamsadhvani
Sabdam - Odumam Odunga - Ragamalika - kamba Ramayanam, Sita-Rama honeymoon scene
Varnam - Bala gopalam - Panthuvarali
Bhuvanesvariyaa - Mohana Kalyani - Muttayya Bhagavatar
Aaj Aye Shyam - Pahadi - Swati Tirunal
Ananda Nadamidum Rajane - Shanmukhapriya
Thiruppugazh in praise of Murugan in Kaapi
Guru Sudha Chandrasekhar and Vidya Chandrasekhar
Vocal: Gopal Venkatraman
Violin: Akshaya Rajkumar
Mridangam: M.S. Sukhi from Guruvayoor
Veena: Prabha Thayalan from Boston
Flute: V.K. Raman from Baltimore