September 28 - November 9, 2008
The Dhananjayans' tour USA with BHAKTI-MAARGAM

Living legends of an ancient tradition - The Dhananjayans on their "farewell" tour of North America with one of their senior and prominent disciples, Padmarani Rasiah Cantu (Artistic Director FAS Yogaville and selected Artiste in the Virginia Commission for the Arts Tour Directory).

The Dhananjayans presented BHAKTI MAARGAM (The path of devotion) in the best traditions of Bharatanaatyam. The presentation consisted of a traditional Maargam repertoire featuring the best of their fifty years of artistic excellence in choreography.

Presentation: BHAKTI MAARGAM (Paths of Devotion) - Bharatanaatyam
Performers: Dhananjayans, Padmarani Rasiah Cantu

Musicians: Babu Parameswaran (vocal), Nellai D Kannan (mridangam) and Eswar Ramakrishnan (violin)

This tour coincided with and commemorated the 40th year of founding BHARATAKALANJALI and 70th birthday of Naatyaachaarya Dhananjayan.

(courtesy: Dakshina Daniel Singh Company DC)

Performance Information:
** September 28th Los Angeles, CA
Presented by Keertana school of Indian Music & Fine Arts
At William Bristol Civic Auditorium
16600,Civic Center Drive, Bellflower, CA-90706. At 4pm
Contact: Babu Parameswaran - (949) 559 4504, (949) 394 6415,

** October 4th River Grove, IL
Presented by Natya
At Triton College of Performing Arts Center
Contact: Hema Rajagopal - (630) 323 7835,

** October 5th Detroit, MI
Presented by Tamil Sangam of Michigan
At Avondale High School
Contact: Kanthi Sundar - 248 310 1404, / Roopa Shyamsundar -

** October 9th Houston, TX
Presented by Samskrit Society for IndianPerforming Arts
At 8030 Oakington, Houston TX 77051
Contact: Vatsa Kumar - 979 240 9496, / Ratna Anilkumar - 713 774 6100,

** October 10th Houston, TX
Presented by Bharati Society & Anjali School of Performing Arts
At Cullen Performance Hall, University of Houston ; (713) 743 6191. At 8pm
Contact: Ratna Anilkumar (713) 774 6100, (713) 772 2787 ;

** October 11th Austin, TX
Rosebud Theater, UT Arlington,
301 W 1st Street, Arlington, TX 76010. At 6pm
Contact: Janaki Nagarajan - (512) 918 1351

** October 12th Dallas, TX
Presented by Indian Fine Arts Academy, Dallas TX IFAA
At Rosebud Theater at UTA, 300 W 1st street Arlington
TX 76010 ; 817 272 2011. At 4pm
Contact: Venkat Devarajan, President - 817 572 2824,
Gowri Ram (Hari) - (214) 495 8647,
Srikant P.N -

** October 13 - 15th Dallas, TX
Contact: Gowri Ram (Hari) - (214) 495 8647,

** October 16 - 17th San Jose
Contact: Sugandha & Katherine Kunhiraman

** October 18th San Jose, CA
Presented by Kalalaya Academy for Music & Dance
At CET AUDITORIUM 701 Vine St, San Jose
Contact: Kala Iyer, Free Mont - (510) 796 5252 Cl:510 305 9285,

** October 19th San Diego, CA
Presented by India Fine Arts Academy
At Sherwood Auditorium, Museum of Contemporary Arts, 700 Prospect St, La Jolla CA. At 6.00pm
Contact: Divya Devaguptapu - (858) 229 5696,
Shekar Vuiswanathan - 858 638 0744,

** October 24th Orangeburg, SC
Presented by Mridani school of Performing Arts
At Sottile Theater, 44 George Syt,Charleston SC 29401, 843 953 5623 . At 7.30pm
Contact: Dr.Anuradha Murali - 1944 way dr, Orangeburg,SC 29118, (803) 347 3851,

** October 25th Washington D.C
Presented by Dakshina Daniel Singh Company, 1816 New Hampshire Ave, NW Suite 109
At: The Lincoln Theater, 1215 U Street, NW Washington DC 20009. At 6.00pm.
Contact: Minakshi Krishnan - 614 353 7677,
Daniel Singh - (202) 247 1292,
    October 27, 28, and 29, 2008
    Bharatanaatyam workshop by V P Dhananjayan & Shanta Dhananjayan
    A golden opportunity to interact and learn directly from the all time greats of a living tradition of Indian classical performing art.

    Workshop Sessions
    - Abhinaya (for all Indian classical dancers)- $150
    (Participants will explore emotion in dance)
    - Bharatanaatyam (only for Bharatanaatyam dancers) - $ 250
    (Participants will learn a padam and a tillana)
    - Both Abhinaya and Bharatanaatyam - $ 350
    Advanced Carnatic music lessons in Vocal, Violin and Mridangam also available

    Dates: October 27, 28, and 29
    Timings: Bharatanaatyam 10am-2pm; Abhinaya 6-8pm
    Minakshi Krishnan at or 614.353.7677.
    Visit for more details
** November 1st Boston, MA
Presented by Manithaneyam Trust
At Littleton High School Auditorium, 56 king st Littleton MA 01460. At 5.30pm
Contact: Kailas Aravinthan - 97 Charter Rd, Acton, MA 01720,
(978) 264 0478,

** November 2nd Scotch Plains, NJ
Presented by CMANA
At Terrill Middle School, Scotch Plain
Contact: Dr. Aruna Jaisankar - 732) 321 0953, (484) 894 7702,

** November 9th London, UK
Presented by Milapfest Dr. Nayak
At Lewisham Theatre, Lewisham London SE
Contact: Shobana B - Res. 01895 677360 Ml: 07806 360284
Pushkala Gopal - (44) 208 554 4054, (44) 793 056 6156,


SAN DIEGO: September 29th - October 3rd
Contact: Divya Devagupatappu / Shoba Sharma

MICHIGAN: October 6th & 7th
Contact: Roopa Shyamsundar

HOUSTON: October 8th & 9th
Contact: Ratna Anilkumar

DALLAS TX: October 13th - 15th
Contact: Gowri Hari / P.N.Srikant

FREMONT/SAN JOSE: Octpober 16 & 17th
Contact: Sugandha Iyer / Katherine Kunhiraman

Contact: Dr. Anuradha Murali

WASHINGTON DC DAKSHINA: October 26th - 30th
Contact: Daniel Singh

LONDON: November 5th to 8th
Contact: Pushkala Gopal, Shobana Balachander

Bharata Naatyam is a complete theater form involving body, mind and spirit. Conceptualized to be an easy communion between humans and gods, it is an incomparable theatrical technique that has gone through thousands of years of evolution.

This visual and performance art form aims to educate, entertain, and elevate.

The dance form features stylized hand gestures that resemble natural human gesticulations; physical communication; and a complicated science of the architectural engineering of body, mind, major and minor limbs. Together, these weave innumerable aesthetically pleasing patterns. This then is BHARATA NAATYAM, which represents a country's civilization and culture, with a name that connotes the concept of "eradicating ignorance".
*(India is the name given by the invaders, but she was originally known as Bhaarata).

BHAKTI-MAARAGAMM (Path of devotion)
Naatya is a theatrical exercise disciplining body and mind that leads to spirituality, a disciplined path leading to enlightened entertainment. While the ultimate purpose of Naatya is increasing the quality of life (the scriptures quote: "Naatyam bhakti vivardhanam"), a solo repertoire presentation in Bharatanaatyam is defined as "Maargam," signifying the paths of taking both the performer and the onlooker (audience) to a level of sublimity. Interpretations of song and music through gestures and bodily expressions communicate a range of messages from simple prayer to moralistic stories. Primary to this enterprise are the paths of physical discipline, mental devotion and spiritual dedication. Therefore, the repertoire in this presentation has been selected to provide an experience of walking through devotional fervor.

The Dhananjayans (V.P. & Shanta Dhananjayan) have journeyed through six decades long experience forging a path for a galaxy of dancers and musicians in their wake. Bharata Kalanjali founded by them in 1968 is a trend-setting institution that stands testament to their creative genius, contributing a new dimension to the tradition of Bharatanaatyam, inspiring a new generation of artists to be proud professionals of this performing art. Through their national and international collaborations, they raised the profile of the art and ushered in new waves of global evaluation of a tradition previously confined to a religion and region. The couple has produced, composed, and performed countless solos, duos and theatrical productions that have spanned art festivals and prestigious venues across the globe. The Dhananjayans have won numerous awards and accolades for their exemplary caliber as performers, choreographers, teachers, and composers of music. Their long career of performance and teaching has earned them legendary status even in their lifetimes, and they are followed by a lineage of students holding the Bharatakalanjali flag aloft.

"In step with tradition… ahead of their times…" is how art critics in India have acknowledged the Dhananjayans' contributions to the contemporary Bharatanaatyam. They have made several extensions to the existing fundamental framework and created new patters of body movements, enhancing the visual aesthetic beauty while eschewing monotony in the traditional structures. It is an acknowledged fact that the Dhananjayans have been bold enough to pave ways for others by bringing fresh approaches in their presentations. They have also updated the choreographic structure of traditional 'Maargam' and developed terminology to include more meaningful titles for pieces.

A senior alumna of Bharatakalanjali, Chennai - is the artistic Director of the Fine Arts Society, Yogaville, Virginia and a selected artiste with The Virginia Commission for the Arts-Tour Directory for the past seventeen years, Padmarani has won honors for her meritorious contributions to Art in Education programs of the State. Purity of line and adherence to tradition is the hallmark of Padma and Indian critics often call out her performances as being "connoisseurs' delight". An uncompromising performer-teacher par excellence, Padma has kept up a high standard of quality in her students who graduated from Fine Arts Society of Yogaville which, for the last 20 years also has been conducting a highly acclaimed residential summer training program in Bharatanaatyam under the direction of her mother Mrs.Rukmini Rasiah guided by the inspiration given by H.H.Swami Satchidananda.

BABU PARAMESWARAN (Vocal & Nattuvangam)
Alumnus of Bharatakalanjali, Chennai, Babu traces direct lineage with the legendary Chembai Vaidyanatha Bhagavatar, and has mastered the art of singing and conducting Bharatanaatyam performances under the Dhananjayans. His evocative singing with a consummate understanding of the idiom has made him a much sought-after accompanist by many performers, culminating in his becoming a US resident. His Keertana School of Indian Music & Fine Arts in Los Angeles is a boon to talented students who require advance training in Carnatic music. A composer of both classical and fusion music, Babu has enriched the Naatya productions of the Indian artistes in America, especially in the San Francisco Bay Area.

NELLAI. D.KANNAN (Mridangam)
A Mridangam player of the highest quality, Kannan has imbibed the art from his own father Nellai Devaraja Iyer and his skill was honed by legendary Vidwan Kutralam Viswantha Iyer. He began his career as an accompanist for Bharatanaatyam in Bharatakalanjali from 1978, and as a specialist in the field, bagged the coveted State award "Kalaimaamani" at a very young age. Kannan is probably the most desired Mridangist for Bharatanaatyam; he is able to effortlessly adapt his technique to suit the celebrity as well as the novice. There are not many who can match his sense of timing and expressive tonal quality.

A Carnatic vocal child prodigy trained and nurtured by his father Sangeeta Vidwan Prof.P.P.Ramakrishnan, Easwar is the youngest of the accompanists who has hit the Bharatanaatyam stage both as a vocalist and violinist. Under the guidance of the Dhananjayans, Easwar got his training to sing and accompany for Bharatanaatyam, while he underwent a formal diploma course in Kalakshetra. Merit scholarship holder from the Government of India, Ministry of Culture, young Easwar won several prizes and awards in youth competitions. He accompanies well-known dancers both as main singer and violin accompanist, has already performed and toured around the world a couple of times, and has also proven his ability to score music for dance productions.