5 Renowned Indian Classical Dancers

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Pandit Birju Maharaj

Pandit Birju Maharaj in action

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India is a country known for  9 wonderfully varied classical dances. So, it is obvious that there exists a number of great exponents of this majestic art form within the country. Now, the question to be asked is, who are these classical dancers? Here is then illustrating to you a list of ‘5 Renowned Indian Classical Dancers’, which shall in turn hopefully answer the question mentioned above.

Mallika sarabhai

Mallika sarabhai

a. Pandit Birju Maharaj:

‘A true master of Kathak’  is the best way to describe Pandit Birju Maharaj, who is considered to be one among a few popular Indian Classical Dancers. A recipient of the prestigious Padma Vibhushan, Sangeet Natak Akademi Award and the Kalidas Samman,  Maharaj is responsible for popularizing Kathak, and taking it to great heights within the country. Furthermore, his performances is said to have set a new benchmark in this form of dancing. Apart from India, he has also performed in many places around the globe. In addition, he also has choreographed the 2016 Bollywood movie ‘Bajirao Mastani’ directed by Sanjay Leela Bhansali, for which he won the popular Filmfare award.

b. Mallika Sarabhai: 

‘Multifaceted’ is an adjective that best describes Mallika Sarabhai, a popular Kuchipudi and Bharatnatyam dance. Having won prestigious awards such as the Padma Bhushan and Sangeet Natak Akademi, Sarabhai is one among a few popular Indian Classical Dancers . Her multi-dimensional personality has led her to participate in activities as varied as acting, writing, and publishing. In addition, she was also awarded the French Palme D’or, the highest civilian award in France.

c. Sonal Mansingh:

‘Odissi’ is the Indian classical dance form that Sonal Mansingh specializes in. Considered to be  one of the few popular Indian Classical Dancers, Mansingh began her career as a performing  artists way back in 1962. Furthermore, she also established the ‘Centre for Indian Classical Dances’ in New Delhi. Such has been the power of her performances over the years, that she has been rewarded with the prestigious Padma Bhushan, Padma Vibhushan, and the Sangeet Natak Akademi Award.

d. Rukmini Devi Arundale:

‘Bharatnatyam’ is the specialty of  Rukmini Devi Arundale, one among the few renowned Indian Classical Dancers. Furthermore, apart from her contribution to Indian classical dance, she is also said to have ushered in a ‘Renaissance’ in Indian Classical Music. It was in 1956 and 1967 that  she won the Padma Bhushan and the Sangeet Natak Akademi Fellowship respectively. Apparently, she was also offered the post of President of India by then Prime Minister Morarji Desai.

e. Shovana Narayan:

‘A maestro in Kathak’ is what Shovana Narayan ,one among a few famous Indian Classical Dancers can be described as. Her performances are such that they evoke a lot of powerful emotions within the audience. It was during the 1970’s that she first established herself as a classical dancer. Furthermore, it was in 1992 and 1999 that she awarded the Padma Shri and Sangeet Natak Akademi Awards respectively.

Image Credit: Wikipedia and Wikipedia


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