The Bharatanatyam Story

Photo Credit: Bishal Sharma Surabhi Photography

Dance is one of the great arts many want to perform at least once in their life, with different formats or styles of dances based on cultures or places. Among different dance arts, Bharatanatyam is a 3,000 year old art form originated in Tamil Nadu, the southern part of India. Bharatanatyam tells the mythological stories about deities and praising their deeds and kindness.

Natya Shastra is an ancient Indian treatise for drama, dance and music. This classical dance should have three components, “Nritta”, “Nritya” and “Naatya”. Nritta is defined as pure dance form with beats (Thala) and time measures (Laya). Nritya conveys the message to audience through facial expressions, body gestures and movements. Natya is combination of both nritta and nritya. A Bharatanatyam dancer would not express the completeness of the art form unless respecting profoundly the techniques and spiritual life. When the dancer expresses the message through movements and facial expressions, it connects the souls of the dancer and the percipient.

Bharatanatyam Arangetram is a debut performance of a student with her Guru’s blessings. After many years of learning, the guru decides that the student is ready to perform the complex pieces of the art form in front of an audience. It is a ceremony celebrating the dedication of learning the true art form of Bharatanatyam.

Anvitha Reddy Devarapalli is currently attending 8th grade at Wayzata West Middle School. She has been living in the city of Medina since 2013 along with her parents Anji Reddy Devarapalli, Sudhamai Arra and younger brother Aryan Reddy Devarapalli. She started her Bharatanatyam dancing journey at the age of 6 at Nrityalaya Dance Academy under the guidance of Guru Smt., Padmaja Dharnipragada. After learning for many years, she performed on July 22, 2023 at Wayzata High School Auditorium for her Bharatanatyam Arangetram.

Apart from the dance, she has been playing volleyball leagues from MN Select Club and also participating in other spots like swimming and tennis. In addition she also enjoys drawing, photography, reading, and spending time with friends. She is quite involved in volunteering for different non-profit organizations and our community.

Anvitha has developed a great passion towards Bharatanatyam and is eager to learn more about it in the future. She is very grateful for what her family has done for her, especially her mom, who has been encouraging Anvitha to do dance from the start and took all the time and patience to help achieve her dream.

Nrityalaya Dance Academy was founded in 1992 in the Twin Cities by Guru Smt. Padmaja Dharnipragada. It was established with the sole purpose to teach the priceless artistic tradition of India and impart to the young the true spirit of art in Classical dance. Nrityalaya has been training hundreds of students in Bharatanatyam every year and celebrates their annual event in which we showcase one of our featured dance dramas like Mohini Bhasmasura, Mahishasura Mardhini, which provides the opportunity for every single student to be on stage. It is an event that all of our students and the community look forward to. Nrityalaya is an organization that the community counts on for charitable events and programs.