S.Rajam’s (Music Appreciation notes)

Friday, 9 February 2018

Nirmala Ramachandran

Birthdays & Anniversaries

9.2.1936 - 23.2.2011
She was a dancer who made a great contribution not only to Indian art, but to Russian culture as well. She lived in Russia in 1984-89 with her husband S. Ramachandran, who was at the time, the chief of the Air India Office in the U.S.S.R. Nirmala Ramachandran was the first Bharatanatyam performer to demonstrate to Russian lovers of this Indian art, that there were in it not just movements of arms, feet and eyes, but movements of feelings which appeal to the most subtle chords of the soul, both of performers and spectators. Her perfor­mance made a great impression on us. Her remarkable plasticity, wonderful precision of dance movements and abhinaya impacted us immensely. With her dance, she was able to produce feelings of joy and grief, love and sadness, fear and astonishment in people’s hearts.

Nirmala Ramachandran had another great achievement to her credit. Thanks to her efforts, the first Bharatanatyam school was established in Moscow. It was not an easy affair in view of the situation in the Soviet Union, a closed country, where an art with obvious religious overtones was not welcomed at all. In March 1987, the school was inaugurated, to become in this country the first school of Indian dance with systematic training where Russians were able to get basic lessons in choreography and theory of Bharatanatyam. Alexandra Denissova (Sasha), one of Nirmala has been living in Chennai for more then ten years, was among the first students of this school.

                                               To read full story, visit sruti.com and buy Sruti 153,319

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