A class act – Jagyaseni Chatterjee

Bharatanatyam dancer and disciple of Dr Lakshmi Ramaswamy, Jagyaseni Chatterjee performed recently at Nalli’s Aadi Natya Vizha organized by Brahma Gana Sabha. What has made this 75 minute recital a benchmark is its success in terms of hitting the records as Tamil Nadu’s first Crowdfunded Solo Bharatanatyam Recital and unanimous positive feedbacks from the audience including art lovers and senior dance Gurus namely Padmabhushan V P Dhanjayan, Padmasri Chitra Visweswaran, Kathak danseuse Jigyasa Giri, dance critic Nandini Ramani and Chairperson of AIM for Seva, Sheela Balaji. The performance showcased the dancer’s ability to brilliantly handle complex rhythm and intensive abhinaya giving the evening an enriching experience.

Jagyaseni began her recital with an Anjali in Ragam Ratipatipriya composed by Dr Vanathy Raghuraman. A fast number, the dancer followed it with Guru Slokas rendered with clear focus and mood. She then moved onto the Varnam Sakhiye Nee Solladi in Ragam Kalyani, a composition of Geethapriyan, choreographed Padmasri Chitra Visweswaran. Interspersed with interesting jathis, Jagyaseni showcased her grip over her movements, balance and abhinaya through the centre piece. The varnam consisted of sancaris in various moods that the dancer captured aptly. Describing the Kalinga Nartana and His deeds, the heroine tells her sakhi in myriad moods to go and tell Krishna that she is waiting for Him. Her energy in the dynamic of the jathis perfectly complimented the delicate nuances of the abhinaya and made the varnam a delight for every audience.

What became an audience choice was her padam Chinnanchirikiliye composed by Subramania Bharatiyar in Kaapi.

She continued the recital with a Kshetraya Padam Nanne Pelladu Sumi in Ragamalika.  Portraying a Mugdha Nayika, the padam was a rare rendition and the innocence of the nayika coupled with her interchanging roles of the hero was impressive.

“It reflected the amount of hardwork both the dancer and her Guru had put in for this performance,” opined Padmasri CHitra Visweswaran. According to legendary dancer Padmabhushan V P Dhanjayan, “Her performance was a testimony to her passion towards dance.” She was an absolute delight to watch…so fresh, untiring and graceful,” remarked Kathak danseuse Jigyasa Giri.

The recital also included for the first time verses from the popular song Bharata Desh Hitaya written by Swami Dayananda Saraswati’s in a traditional Thillana or concluding number rendered in Desh Ragam. The power packed orchestra supporting Jagyaseni comprised Sruti Sagar (Flute), Ananthakrishnan(Violin), Veda Krishnaram (Mridangam), Veera Raghavan (Vocal) and Dr Lakshmi Ramaswamy (Nattuvangam).