Song of Surrender

Saturday, 1 March 2014

Vyjayantimala honoured with Lifetime Achievement Award

By Sruti

Veteran Bharatanatyam exponent and famous actor Vyjayantimala Bali was conferred the 4th Guru Gandadhar Pradhan Lifetime Achievement Award on the concluding evening of the 29th annual Konark Dance and Music Festival 2014. The award, instituted in memory of late Odissi exponent and guru Gangadhar Pradhan by Konark Natya Mandap, carries a plaque, a citation, a shawl and a cash of one lakh rupees. The memento is a stylised image of Guru Gangadhar Pradhan (founder of the Konark festival). Gajapati Maharaja Dibyasingha Deb, the King of Puri, presented the award to Vyjayantimala Bali. Ashok Kumar Tripathy, IAS, DG-Training Coordination, also felicitated the eminent awardee. Vyjayantimala spoke in Odia, Hindi and English and floored the crowd of connoisseurs, tourists and local villagers.

Odissi Guru Gangadhar Pradhan launched the festival in 1986. Over the years, the Konark festival has gained a unique identity by featuring eminent artists of national and international repute belonging to classical, folk and tribal genres. The enchanting stage of the Natyashala at the Konark Sun Temple, and the natural ambience of cashew and casuarinas trees add a natural touch to the architectural marvel. The festival is held every year from 19th to 23rd February.

The award is presented every year to an artist of national and international repute who has played the role of a cultural ambassador for Indian classical and traditional arts. The awardees are chosen not only for their dedication and achievement, but also for their active participation and contribution in propagating and uplifting the art.

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