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Dances of India
J.P. Cheung
5/26/2003 9:19:00 PM

Classical Indian dances are known for their spiritual and religious content. Among the 8 key types of classical dance, we focus on a few. Kuchipudi, also known as Bhagavata mela natakam, was always performed as an offering to the temples. Kathakali is an elaborate dance depicting the victory of truth over falsehood. Mohini attam is a dance of love and devotion to god. Bharata Natyam is a dance that has been handed down through the centuries by dance gurus called nattuwanars and the temple dancers called devadasis. In meeting with Dr. Padma Subramaniam, an internationally-acclaimed Bharata Natyam dancer at her studio in Chennai, the AFAR staff was not only deeply impressed with the graceful techniques and hand gestures of this dance but also Dr. Subramaniamís open mind and appreciation of the other cultures. She is awarded the highly prestigious Fukuoka Asian prize for her contribution to the arts.

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