On the 27th of Mai 2012 I attended workshop on Karanas held by Janaki Rangarajan. Janaki is student of Padma Subrahmanyam – famous for her extensive research on Karanas. For longer time Karanas was considered as static postures – depicted in temple sculptures. But according to Padma Subrahmanyam Karanas can also be movements.
This workshop broadened my view in Bharata Natyam reminding me that also Indian temple dance have been changing. Karana belongs to the older temple dance; they were broadly used before the name ” Bharata Natyam” was introduced.
In the end of July I joined Usha Raghavan and her students in tour through South India, visiting places relevant to Bharata Natyam dance. The journey covered 2 states - Tamil Nadu and Kerala. During the tour we visited lots of temples and had workshops in Kathakali and Mohiniatam.
The first notable visit was Chidambaram temple, which is dedicated to Lord Nataraja (dancing Shiva). It is believed that this is the place where Shiva performed his cosmic dance – Tandava. Chidambaram is significant monument for Bharata Natyam as it includes all 108 Karanas (postures of dancing Shiva). As a great honor for our group was possibility to dance in front of Nataraja. Inspired by great spirituality prevailing there, we continued dancing on our own near the water tank.
One of the most beautiful temples we visited was Brihadeeswarar Temple in Tanjore (Thanjavur). It is distinct with its typical Chola architecturer- full of elaborated details. What I enjoyed the most in this temple was the lightness and spaciousness in colours and construction.
On the 5th of February 2011 I danced for a small group of people in Krishna Fest in Vauban. During my 2 study years in Freiburg I have never met any Krishnaites. I didn’t know if there are any Krishna devotes in Freiburg. Recently I happened to meet one of them in the streets of Freiburg. From him I found out that celebration to praise the Lord Krishna will be held in Freiburg Vauban.
After completing my Master studies in Freiburg in the end of 2008, I returned to Latvia and rejoined dance group Bharata. I was happy to be together with my old friends while training in dance lessons and dancing in performances. I actively engaged in learning new dance items, developing my dance technique and comprehension. This period was rich with new dances, dance events and performances. I learned about 10 new dance items. In average I had one performance a month in group or solo.
From the beginning of the year 2010 I started to help my mother organising Ballroom dance evenings in my hometown - Valmiera. Slowly I got involved in the process and started to practice Ballroom dancing as well. To surprise my dance mates and to enrich the evening program, I gave performance of Bharata Natyam in one of the dance events.
We are regularly invited to perform in Maha Shivratri – festival to honor God Shiva. Also babajists (devotees of Sai Baba) invite us to enrich their celebrations.