Song of Surrender

Saturday, 19 May 2012

Lateral Teaching

By Nalini Raghu

This is one of the two prize-winning articles reproduced from the souvenir published during the Natya Kala Conference convened by Shanta Dhananjayan in December 2010 and 2011.

Everyone loves to talk about the ‘good old days’ and say how wonderful things were in the past. But change is inevitable in every phase of our lives, and change, like sunshine, can be a friend or a foe, a blessing or a curse. Artists are very good at adapting to changing times and continuing tradition. The very existence of our classical dance and music tradition is proof of this.

In the early days of dance tradition (Sadir), both the teacher and the taught had plenty of time at their disposal. Everything was taught in a leisurely manner and learnt without much timebound pressure in Gurukulavasam. The theory and technical perfection were not taken seriously into consideration, in the early stages. One always hoped to improve slowly with years of experience, while absorbing the practical aspect of dance into one’s system.

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