The Mukteshwar Dance Competition, organised by the Odia Language, Literature & Tradition Division, Bhubaneshwar, in affiliation with Odisha Sangeet Natak Akademi, that passed off lately, was an expertise in itself for 2 causes. In the beginning was the architectural marvel of the tenth century Mukteshwara Temple, considered the gem of Orissan structure, as its backdrop, and secondly, this was the primary main competition solely devoted to Odissi dance, showcasing new choreographies in solo, duet, and group format.
Designed to offer a platform for established and younger dancers, the competition has performed an important position in enriching the repertoire of Odissi dance since its inception. Began within the 12 months 1984, as a part of the Golden Jubilee of the Odisha State Museum, Mukteshwar Dance Competition was conceived and curated by the then Director of Tradition, Authorities of Odisha, Subas Pani, creator, scholar, researching Jayadeva and Jagannath.
The primary version featured Odissi exponents Sanjukta Panigrahi and Kumkum Mohanti, who carried out ‘Usha-Vilas’, a brand new choreography by guru Pankaj Charan Das and Guru Gangadhar Pradhan. Geeta Govinda, likewise, was choreographed by Guru Kelucharan Mohapatra, which speaks of the excessive requirements this competition has set for Odissi dance.
The gorgeous venue, nestled in one of many richest architectural sculptural treasure troves of Odisha’s cultural heritage, Mukteshwar temple represents the developed stage of Kalinga fashion structure with its beautiful entrance of carved Toran (a semicircular arch) resting on two ornate pillars and an eight-petalled lotus carved on the within of the ceiling, a function not present in every other temple of Odisha. The temple partitions are richly adorned with quite a few lovely sculptures in addition to tales from the Panchatantra.
The temple premise has an historic sundial and is flanked by a number of small votive temples. Throughout the primary temple is the Parsurameswar temple. Instantly to its north is the Siddheshwar temple with the vermillion-smeared Ganesha because the Parshva-Devata. To the south are the temples of Gauri and Kedareshwara. Few, maybe, know that yearly the presiding deity of this temple-town, Lord Lingaraja, involves the Gauri temple for a ceremonial marriage together with his celestial partner.
As per the custom the competition commenced, on all three days, with the ceremonial lighting of the lamp. Religious fervour of the Shavite shrine was additional enhanced with the group rendition of Shiva-Vandana, accompanied by a stay orchestra comprising sitar, flute, violin, mandala, and manjira that preceded the dance performances each night.
‘Katha Mardal’ was offered as a duet, by the younger duo Himanshu Kumar Ray and Diptiranjan Baral on the concluding night. It was one of many commendable new choreographies offered at this 12 months. Conceived and scripted by Srinivas Ghatuari and Kedar Mishra, with rhythmic inputs by guru Dhaneshwar Swain and choreographed by guru Aruna Mohanty, it explored the story of Mardal from its tribal origin to people and the classical stature. They opened their night efficiency with ‘Rudra Mandala’, describing the presiding deity of Ekamra Pitha Shiva in three kinds Rudra, Mahakala, and Nataraja.
The gradual evolution of the versatile instrument additionally lined completely different phases prefer it’s accompanying the Maharis (the temple dancers), Gotipuas, and classical Odissi dancers and singers with a wide range of Chhand composed, recited, after which performed in several Jatis corresponding to Tisra, Chatusra, Khanda, Mishra and Sankeerna by guru Dhaneshwar Swain. The duet efficiency opened with the 2 dancers worshipping the Mardal after which certainly one of them enjoying the percussion instrument and the opposite accompanying Manjira and dancing, taking the story ahead to exhilarating heights.
The inaugural night opened with an invocation to Shiva by Mahendra Kumar Acharya & group, earlier than Sarita Mishra from Bengaluru offered her solo, an ode to Lord Shiva. Her abhinaya piece ‘Ganga’ was concerning the Patit-Pavani, Mukti-Karini, Moksha-Dayini Ganga.
Gayatri Ranabir and Saurabh Mohanti (duet efficiency) opened with pallavi in Shuddha Desi beginning with the Raga-Dhyana shloka after which a brief dance-drama ‘Pashani Ahilya’ with applicable music by Sukant Kumar Kundu, rhythm by Guru Dhaneshwar Swain and dance choreography by guru Durga Charan Ranabir.
The inaugural night concluded with the group efficiency by the scholars of the Utkal College of Tradition. They offered Panch-Deva-Stuti on Pancha-Maha-Bhuta, Gaoti Pallavi, and ‘Braje Basantam’ based mostly on the Adi Shankarar’s Chaurashtakam, in Ragamalika and Taalmalika. This Abhinaya piece additionally included ‘Shabda-Swara-Paath’ and Kaliya-Daman-Leela.
Prafull Chandra Behera and group from Cuttack opened the second day’s night programme with an Odia prayer. The solo Odissi was offered by Harekrishna Dhall, invoking the cosmic dancer Nataraja. ’Bali-Moksha’, explored a brand new interpretation of the Bali-Vadha. Conceived, scripted, and voice-over by Srinivasa Ghatuary, right here Bali was not slayed however granted salvation by Rama.
The duet by Trilochan Sahoo and Prashanti Jena, skilled beneath guru Sujata Mohapatra, offered Hamsadhwani pallavi and Dasavatara, set to raag Mohana and taal Jhumpa. The group presentation by guru Kasturi Patnayaka and Sankalp Delhi comprised Uma-Maheswara stotra, Patdeep pallavi, and abhinaya on the favored Odia tune Maare baano/dhara shravana ki…, concluding with ‘Nirvaan’, the moksha.
The Shiva-Panchakshara-Stotra, rendered by Nimkanta Rautray and group on the concluding night was adopted by ‘Nandika-Kesari’, a solo ekaharya abhinaya by guru Sikata Das set to Raagmalika and Taalmalika. This solo dance drama was based mostly on an Odia play of the identical identify written by her father, the famous dramatist Manoranjan Das.
The Mukteshwar Dance Competition concluded with Ratikanta Mohapatra’s Srijan Ensemble presenting Shiva Tandava stotra, Shankarabharana Pallavi and their new choreography ‘Vande Suryam’.
The Sanskrit lyrics for the brand new piece was written by Pt. Nityananda Mishra. The skilled customary of the well-researched and eloquent anchoring by Srinivas Ghatuari in Odia and Sushri Sanhati Pani in English wants particular point out.