India: Lecture by Dr. Swarnamalya Ganesh






Cordially invites you to


a lecture




Past Performing Practices of the Nayak

Period, a Vestibule to Today’s





Dr. Swarnamalya Ganesh


Date:        Saturday, December 8, 2012

Time:        10:30 a.m.

Venue:      The C.P. Ramaswami Aiyar Foundation

1 Eldams Road, Alwarpet

Chennai – 600 018



The association between art and political power shift is an important paradigm.  The study of dance in the context of a political, racial shift is intertwined with the understanding of the memories, class struggles, and issues of identity and authority that existed.  Through this paper, she will share her comprehensions from a journey through a complex era of the Nayak rulers of the south Indian art history.  The purpose is to study the evolution of Bharatanatyam into its present form, from its more immediate past and ancestral memory.  Much of contemporary dance history of the south is steered towards seeing its hoary past and links to vedic and early historic extant like the Natya sastra.  While this link is undeniable, it is from the immediate cultural memory that the performaing traditions of today have been culled out. Its copula to “Sadir-attam”, “dasi-attam” and also its close link to geographical and political structures are its rich traditions.  It is from these numerous corpuses of dance repertoire that the Tanjore Quartette and others excogitated the margam.



About Swarnamalya Ganesh


Swarnamalya Ganesh is a professional Bharatanatyam dancer with over 25 years of learning and experience.  She holds a masters degree in Bharatanayam and a doctoral degree from the University of Madras in dance history (Research and Reconstruction of dance Repertoire of the Nayak period). She is a visiting faculty for the Department of Indian music, University of Madras for Dance history.


She is a senior disciple of K.J. Sarasa and has also been training with the Tiruvazaputhur Sisters (hereditary artistes) for the past several years.  She has also undergone training in Karanas with Dr. Padma Subrahmanyam.  She has choreographed several researched dance productions including a ballet on Silappadikaram from Madhavi’s view point.  She has completed courses in Tamil and Grantha epigraphy and workd closely with archeologists on several projects.  She writes research papers for journals including the Oriental Journal of Asian Studies. She is the Director of Ranga Mandira Trust and School of Performing Arts.

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