Indian Classical Dance as a Phenomenon of World Culture

A Tutorial on its History, its Techniques, and its Health Effects

Academic Paper, 2019

81 Pages, Grade: Postgraduate

Free online reading




2.1 Brief history of styles. Bharata - Natyam
2.2. Brief history of styles. Odissi
2.3. Brief history of styles. Mohini Attam
2.4. Brief history of styles. Kuchipudi style
2.5. Brief history of styles. Manipuri style

3.1. Bharata-Natyam
3.1.1. Style
3.1.2. Suit
3.2. Kuchipudi
3.2.1. Style
3.2.2. Suit
3.3. Odissi
3.3.1. Style
3.3.2. Suit
3.4. Mohini Attam
3.4.1. Style
3.4.2. Suit
3.5. Manipuri
3.5.1. Style
3.5.2. Suit

Chapter 4. The Health Effect of Indian Classical Dance

Chapter 5. Hasta. Mudra





Undoubtedly, the cultures of Russia and India are very close - since ancient times there are connections between the two nations. The Russian soul has always been attracted to India. But gradually the image of India began to retreat to the realm of fairy tales, an entertaining and frivolous reading. The knowledge of our people about India, basically, came down to yogis, elephants and women with a point in the forehead. In order to replenish knowledge, to satisfy intellectual and spiritual needs, in 1992 in Omsk several enthusiasts united in the Center for the Study of Indian Culture "Bharat" (India). The trinity of Indian culture - beauty, truth, good helped us in our work.

The purpose of the Center’s work was to introduce the personality into the process of “cultural growth”, to form in it a readiness for independent spiritual mastering of the true values of world culture through the culture of the East.

Based on the experience of the integral education of the Indian school, we have created our own program, which includes theoretical and practical parts: lectures on the traditional culture of India, classes in recreational gymnastics with elements of Indian classical dance and Indian classical dance.

Enthusiasts of the Center themselves sewed costumes for dancing, made jewelry and constantly collected information about India. Over the past years (even before the wide development of the Internet in Omsk), a library was collected bit by bit: more than 250 books of popular science and scientific literature, books on economics, politics, architecture, philosophy, linguistics, fiction, a large number of illustrated magazines and videos on culture (ceremonies, dances, programs from the Eureka series). At the Center a Kalpna (Creation) dance group was created. This expanded educational opportunities, because dance is the most accessible visual means. Our team is not national - there were no Indians among us, but we always tried to find in any culture what unites it with another culture. In the city of Omsk, our Center collaborated with national cultural centers: Chinese, Korean, Kazakh, Tatar. Together with our friends from these centers we took part in the exhibition-fair of the national teams of the city and region.

By the nature of our activities in February 1996, we were invited to Moscow for the founding conference of the Friends of India society and the presentation of the newspaper The Mirror of India, which was founded by the Indian fraternity, the Indian firm Nadex Corporation and the translator of the all-Indian radio Y.F. Korchagov. At the invitation of the Embassy of India in Moscow, our team participated in a concert dedicated to the meeting of the spring "Holy Mela" in March 1996.

In January 1996, the team took part in a meeting with the Indian delegation headed by the head of the sector of the Department of Youth and Sports of the Government of India, Mr. Purti.

In November 1999, the team participated in a meeting of the cultural attaché under the Government of India in Moscow, the director of the Indian Cultural Center. J. Nehru in Moscow, Mr. A. Sanjankhar.

In September 2000, at the invitation of the Omsk Regional Administration, we participated in the meeting of the Indian delegation headed by the Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Republic of India, Mr. S.K. Lamba.

In November 2000, the team took part in the regional festival of national cultures "Unity" and the final gala concert "The Soul of Russia". In December 2000, at the invitation of the city administration, they took part in the opening of the Omsk representative office of the Indian pharmaceutical company Shrey.

In March 2001, at the invitation of the Japanese government attaché in Novosibirsk, they participated in the opening of the 34th festival of Japanese cinema and the presentation of the Japanese cultural center in Omsk.

Since 1992, the Bharat society and the Kalpna dance group have repeatedly held lectures, concerts and educational programs for the Family House library center, social protection centers of Omsk city districts, boarding schools, hospitals of the city, Omsk House of Scientists, creativity, the children's center of German culture "Hoffnung", Omsk Choreographic Pedagogical College, in higher educational institutions of Omsk, secondary schools of the city and region.

A series of lectures on teaching Indian classical dance of India was included as an optional discipline in the curriculum of the department of choreography of the Faculty of Arts of Omsk State University. Lectures on traditional culture of India were included in the curriculum of the Institute for the Advanced Training of Educators, and were read in the Academician Library. Always in our work we met the hot response of Omsk.

Based on the experience of working with a dance group, health gymnastics for women with elements of Indian classical dance, aimed at individual personal development and protected by intellectual property certificates, were developed for the first time. In 2001, the named methodology received a Diploma of the III degree in the competition of the city of Omsk “Health Program of the Year”. It meets the needs of many categories of the population in motion.

Improving gymnastics for women with elements of Indian classical dance was introduced into work with students of the Omsk Medical College, Omsk State Medical Academy, Omsk State Agrarian University, Siberian State Automobile and Highway Academy, in working with students of 6-8 classes of the special correctional secondary school of Omsk for oligophrenic children and patients of the department of rehabilitation of children and adolescents with mental and physical disabilities. We offer readers a large amount of information accumulated and systematized over the past years.

The literature discusses different points of view on dance [1, 2, 10, 15, 17, 25], but all authors agree on one thing - dance is an excellent means of self-expression, achieving a good physical condition.

Dance is a very special kind of art. It would be extremely frivolous to consider dancing only entertainment, a way of pleasant pastime. Dance reflects feelings. Through dance, a person learns the world around him, learns to interact with him. And dancing is an excellent medicine that helps to get rid of many diseases and improve health.

Dance is one of the most ancient forms of art. As long as humanity exists, it dances so much. The cave paintings from 8-6 millennia BC depict complex choreographic compositions of ritual dances. Then the dances were animistic, their plots evolved on the basis of observations of animals: the habits of animals and birds were figuratively and expressively conveyed. The North American Indians still have the buffalo dance, the Chinese have the peacock, the Yakuts have the bear, and so on.

Gradually, the dance became an integral part of almost all ceremonial ceremonies that accompanied a person from birth to death. Ritual dances united tribesmen, inspired to achieve a common goal. For example, before the start of the hunt, primitive people performed a special dance that not only honed hunting techniques and skills, but also strengthened confidence in success.

Different cultures initially formed their dance traditions - structure, content, typology, rhythm. Smooth, as if flowing from one to another, the movements of Japanese and Chinese dance fascinate the viewer. The art of their performance is often compared with the art of writing elegant hieroglyphs. The basis of the Indonesian dance consists of fixed clear steps; European dance is a combination of movements of a soloist and an ensemble, giving rise to a holistic composition; in the African dance a lot of erotic (specific rotational and oscillatory movements of the hips); in Indian classical dance, gestures and movements symbolize feelings and moods. By the way, Indian dance art is considered the most ancient. According to Hinduism, the creator and first performer of the dance is the god Shiva, who created the universe from chaos.

The dance performed not only and even not so much entertainment, as educational. Thus, the performer of Chinese dances, through movements, “told” to the audience about the structure of the world and its two beginnings - yin (dark female) and yang (bright male). Indian dances showed ideas of the Hindus about the structure of the universe, the movement of stars and planets, etc.

Often dances serve as a means of mass suggestion, psychological manipulation. It is appropriate to recall African folk dances and shaman rituals. Usually they last a very long time - a few hours or even from sunset to sunrise. Their rhythmic pattern is consistent with the rhythm of percussion instruments (“speaking drums”) - tom-toms, tambourines. The soloist sets the rhythm, gradually accelerating and becoming more complex. The movements and sounds have a powerful psychological impact on all participants in the ceremony - they fall into an ecstatic state, which helps, in their opinion, to achieve "enlightenment." Dancing can be a mechanism of mass relaxation, and a way to “let off a pair” (for example, warlike dances remove excessive aggressiveness).

Many centuries have passed, the world has changed beyond recognition, and man continues to dance. Why? An organism is the most complicated self-regulating system. In addition to many other physiological factors, rhythm is of great importance for its vital activity. All internal organs and mental processes function in a certain rhythm. The movement of Nature, animate and inanimate, the macro- and microcosm, also obeys a certain rhythm. Man is a part of the Universe, and therefore the laws of its existence are obligatory for him. And the more our internal rhythm will correspond to the rhythm of Nature, the more harmonious our being will become.

Hazrat Inayat Khan, a follower of Sufism, wrote: “Health is a state of perfect rhythm and tone. Music is rhythm and tone. When health is not in order, it means that the music in us is wrong, the help of harmony and rhythm is necessary to bring us into a state of Harmony and Rhythm ”[3].

The theoretical and methodological basis of the manual is the concept of the unity of culture and the integrity of man, the concept of teaching dance, presented in the research of D.G. Zhurkina, S.I. Ryzhakova, T.V. Ruzovoy, L. Samson, M. Khokar, in Indian treatises on dance - “Natya-Shastra”, “Abhinaya Darpana”, “Chandrika Abhinaya”.


The system of Indian classical dances evolved and developed over several millennia based on martial arts (Kalari-payat), folk dances, Vedic religious canons, ritual, ceremonial acts. Dance is very similar to yoga. Just as in yoga, in Indian classical dance work is intertwined at the physical, psychological and spiritual levels, between which balance is required. Dance connects our physical abilities and energy with spiritual aspirations and helps to maintain contact with the highest vital forces. During the dance, the hemispheres of the brain interact, connecting the intuitive and rational. Indian dance is dance contemplation, dance meditation, dance dissolution.

Dance can be compared to the second aspect of yoga - dynamic. Peace among the movement is a characteristic feature of the main figures of Indian dance, called Karanas. The body of the performer maintains a rigidly fixed position with the fastest jumps. In the combination of statics and dynamics, the principle of harmony of two principles is revealed: masculine - passive (contemplating consciousness), feminine - active (world-creating energy) [4].

But Indian dances are inextricably linked with music, so in order to better understand Indian dances, it is worth learning about Indian music. Music has always occupied a special place in human life. She reflected his mood and helped to find inner harmony. The world of music and the world of nature are also closely related through sound vibration. People used the power of sound to bring rain, call on the winds, light a fire. The power of sound was used even in war: a mantra (a special sound vibration) could destroy the whole army of the enemy or make it sleep, so the sound in ancient times was taken very seriously. There are many confirmations of this in the ancient historical chronicles - the Ramayana and the Mahabharate, as well as in the Puranas and other works. But such an art of sound ownership required the complete surrender of oneself, selfless aspiration and the desire to master it, to devote a lifetime to studying it [24].

Sound is a form of vibration, vibration, which was known to the yogis and ancient and medieval India. According to the prevailing theory, in the teaching of the sacred sound, the Universe is in a state of oscillation. The discovery that sound, especially repetitive sound, affects the mind, was made a long time ago, perhaps even in the Stone Age. There is every reason to believe that some form of simple singing or drumming, perhaps through animal bones as drum sticks, was associated with Paleolithic rituals. Therefore, it is not surprising that by the time of the flourishing of the Vedic civilization in India, sound (both as ritual speech or singing and as music) became a rather sophisticated means of religious expression and spiritual transformation.

If we compare the western musical tradition and the eastern, we will see some difference in the understanding of music in its theory, philosophy and usage. This difference comes from the historically and philosophically formed, different from each other, world outlook and attitude.

Western culture is rational, and the origins of this rationalism go back to the religious system of Western Europe, which clearly divided the world into white and black, good and bad, good and evil, right and wrong. In the Middle Ages, the fanaticism of religious leaders led to the Inquisition, which kept the world in fear for several centuries, and prevented the development of various branches of cultural activity, as well as art. There was an internal protest in people, which further strengthened the polarity between the vital, secular, secular and religious, divine. The same thing happened in music: the music was clearly demarcated, acceptable to the church and everything else. So the music naturally absorbed the rationalism that existed in the culture, and emotional prudence. The composer wanted to express a storm of feelings, but at the same time he had to apply his experience in composing and literally calculate and think through sharp spots, remake many times, hide some special parts, because the work could have been banned as destructive or moral of society. Thus, time and circumstances brought up not free improvisation in musicians, but the art of correct reproduction of a composition. Music was recorded, corresponded, edited - then publicly performed and published. Most of the works were made to order. And so it happened in general in art, and not just in music.

The East developed in a completely different cultural and historical setting. Eastern religious traditions were more flexible, and the attitude of the Eastern people is different. Therefore, in the East, there was a different attitude to art. The desire for integrity, harmony, the desire to feel nature and connect with it their inner feelings, to find a balance in the external and internal inherent in many Eastern cultures. Music was also considered a way to connect the soul and God, a means of communication with the outside world, nature, the elements and with other people. Therefore, in musical education, greater importance was attached to mastering the harmony of the world of sounds, the art of communicating with the instrument, the ability to arrange and improvise and self-expression with the help of music and a musical instrument. Therefore, Indian music is always a revelation, a divine gift. But at the same time, this is a requirement for the musician to be fully immersed in the world of music. Even if the music was made to order, the musicians in the performance of the work could arrange it in a new way every time, perfectly feeling the atmosphere of the moment of performance and therefore performing in a special sensual and elegant way. The history of Indian music dates back thousands of years. Music was considered a given person from above, and she was always treated with awe and reverence. It was considered the occupation of gods and very exalted personalities, and therefore musicians have always been respected. Temple rituals were always accompanied by music.

If you briefly describe the Indian music system, then it is worth paying attention to some points. Melody (in Sanskrit raga) consists of a certain number of harmoniously combined notes (swara) and has its own characteristics: mood, or temperament, emotional coloring, character, color, connection with the season and time of day, etc. Technically, a certain raga is similar to a pattern consisting of a set of different notes. There are notes that are essential for a particular raga and minor. Moreover, notes for raga are divided into mainstream-friendly and non-friendly (in each case there may be different combinations of notes), and the musician, skillfully arranging the stew, complicates and develops this combination of sounds into a beautiful and listenable composition. Therefore, different musicians perform the same stew in their own way, and this is where their art manifests itself - everyone finds his own particular flavor and refreshes the listener's perception. Notes (svary) have many shades of tones: tone, semitone, quarter tone and 1/8 tone. For ordinary hearing, the difference is almost imperceptible. Sounds harmoniously merge or go one into another, which gives the music sophistication and beauty. In general, the following sections are studied in Indian music: on tones, on rhythm (tala), on melodies (raga), on musical instruments, on dance, and on movements and actions in rhythm of dance and singing. The system of rhythms (tals) in the Indian musical tradition is very diverse and complex, there are various musical dimensions that make up an intricate rhythmic pattern. Sometimes in one big composition several sizes are combined, or the same size is used at different tempos (laya) - slow, medium, fast. There are also other ways of arranging the rhythm. This ensures the beauty of the composition, expressiveness and is a powerful means of influencing the viewer. Rhythms are usually pronounced (and recorded) in special syllables (bol), as if imitating the sounds of strikes on a percussion instrument. Demonstrate rhythm clapping palms.

For musical accompaniment in dance, an orchestra of several instruments is used. Mandatory is the singer, he leads, and percussion instruments, such as mridang, tabla, pakhavadzh, manjira (cymbals), depending on the style of dance, other instruments such as flute, violin, sitar, sarangi, tanpura are included. One of the musicians of the orchestra pronounces rhythmic syllables, which are rhythmic patterns that a dancer beats off with her feet.

If we talk about the songs that the singer performs and generally the texts used for Indian dances, then ancient hymns and songs based on poems by exalted poets are taken. Texts and depicts a dancer with facial expressions, gestures and movements. Along with this, there are a large number of dance compositions that do not carry a specific semantic load, but are an abstract choreographic composition, when the singer sings the names of notes or rhythmic syllables, placing the necessary accents.

The study of Indian music also includes an understanding of the emotional expressiveness of music, its temperament and mood. Understands 9 basic emotional states (Navaras):

1. Love, or erotic (srinagar),
2. Comic, or laughter (hasya)
3. Pathetic, or compassion (karuna),
4. Terrible, or anger (rudra),
5. Heroic (vira)
6. Fearful, or fear (bhayanaka),
7. Surprise (adbhuta)
8. Disgust (bibhatsa),
9. Pacification (shant).

In Indian dances it is important that the performer is able to feel himself and express these emotions with the help of his body. Empathy, or how an artist enters the image and embodies it on stage is an important component of theatrical art. For an actor in general, the ability to express different feelings outwardly is important. Dance is a form of art in which a comprehensive impact on the viewer is performed. Music and words already create images within the consciousness of the viewer. To this is added the external influence: lighting, decoration of the hall, costume, decorations, the dancer's hairstyle and make-up, his facial expressions, gestures, movements, emotions, dance patterns, tempo, and other factors. Therefore, dance has always been used in various religious rituals, ceremonies, holidays, important events in the life of people (wedding) and other events as a means of aesthetic and psychological impact. A real spectator, like an artist, is considered to be a full participant in the action, because during the theatrical performance they are connected by a strong invisible thread. So true art ennobles everyone, those who create it, perform it, and those who absorb it with feelings and reason, listening, empathizing and contemplating.

Dance tends to be entertaining for the mind. Therefore, people use dance not only as a form of worship of the deity, but also simply dance for their own pleasure. Earthly kings are representatives of God, so the dance was used to please the kings. The philosopher Cicero wrote: "Drama is a mirror of the life of civilization, reflecting the level of education of people and the degree of their spiritual development."

The drama is a fundamental component of Indian classical dance, because you can express any feelings only through body and face movements, and if you add literature and music to it, the effect on the human consciousness is enhanced.

Drama is one of the main forms of art, combining different types of emotional and psychological effects on the viewer. In general, art forms the audience, however, it itself is formed under its reverse influence. Art ‒ the recipient (viewer, reader, listener) ‒ is a system with feedback. Art draws its audience into the development of ideas and forces the perceiver to appropriate artistic ideas in a personal form. That is, the viewer perceives ideas through their own feelings and emotions. Moreover, art is not ordinary, but artistic emotions. In everyday emotions, biological and social experiences are intertwined; artistic emotions are social. In everyday emotions a lot of momentary, random, artistic emotions fix the socio-historical, necessary, sustainable, important for many people.

Even in antiquity, the importance of the aesthetic function of art was recognized. The Indian poet Kalidasa (around the 5th century AD) singled out four goals of art: to cause admiration of the gods, create images of the surrounding world and human life, deliver supreme pleasure with the help of aesthetic feelings (races): comedy, love, compassion, fear, horror and etc.; serve as a source of universal pleasure, joy, happiness and all the beautiful. Modern Indian scholar V. Bahadur writes that the purpose of art is to inspire, purify and ennoble a person, and for this purpose it must be beautiful.

It can also be said that art makes it possible to feel the close connection between the internal subjective and external objective spheres and to overcome all the barriers to their connection. This requires conscious work on the human mind and emotions. And the most perfect conditions for this are drama. The drama as a whole looks deep into the human mind. Through religion‒based drama, Indian culture has traditionally honored emotions as a divine sphere where human values originate and play out. Indian gods not only set a good example for human behavior, they also make mistakes on which a person can learn. Drama helps to feel such states and develop compassion for others.

A person fascinated by the history of classical dance cannot pass by Indian heritage. The fact is that classical dance as an idea and how the system has developed only in three national cultures of the world. This is Spanish flamenco, European (French by origin) ballet and ‒ Indian classical dance. The latter also has the longest history.

But before turning directly to the dance in India, you first need to get acquainted with the Indian performing culture as a living organism, try to feel its most important "bundles" and "joints".

Indian culture is the culture of sound. Rakti ‒ the ability of the soul to perceive and be charmed by the totality of various sounds in nature ‒ is one of the most important skills and talents of man in India. It is not by chance that the sacred Indian texts ‒ the Vedas, the Brahmans, the Aranyaks, the Upanishads ‒ form the “Shruti tradition” (that is, the “heard”).

Classical dance in India needs not only to "contemplate", but also carefully, even intensely, to "listen". The basis of the dance to this day are the laws of vocal and instrumental music; in antiquity the connection between these types of art was even closer. Initially, all the performing arts went back to religious ritual, expressed in a singing, sounding, vibrating word.

In India, it is believed that a person studying music and dance, with the help of art, spiritually and physically approaches Visvakarman, the creator of the Universe. Music and dance are sometimes revered even above ascetic exploits and sacrifices. It is believed that mastering art purifies a person from evil feelings and desires, raises him to the level of gods and, ultimately, leads to Moksha.

In Indian philosophy, music is understood as one of the manifestations of cosmic power. It is formed from the harmonious movement of celestial bodies and spheres, balances the five elements of the universe, harmonizes all vibrations (spanda), and yet, as Indian mystics believe, those who know the law of vibration know the whole secret of life.

Ustad Inayat Khan, a distinguished Indian musician, philosopher and Sufi, calls mathematics, astrology and philosophy as the three sources of Indian music. He also uses the Indian concept of prestar, meaning "the mathematical arrangement of rhythms and harmonies," as synonymous with "music." The flow of music, in his opinion, follows the same temporal sequence and spatial extent, in which the Universe develops.

Indian classical dance is, in essence, a visible music.

A description of sangit ‒ joining, merging singing (gita), instrumental music (vadya) and dance (nritya) (Gitam Vadyam Tatha Nrityam Trayam Sangitam Uchyate) appears in one of the Sanskrit musical treatises ‒ “Sangitaratnakar” (“Ocean of Music”) Sharngadev. In this text, sangit is understood as a special way of worship.

The possibility of "connecting" three separate arts means that by this time each of them had already gained quite tangible autonomy. The main thing in this merger was the unity of emotional and technical. The nature of the music had to correspond to the song, and the dance, having the same emotion ‒ bhava, had to express their “taste” ‒ rasa.

Vocal in Indian musical culture plays a dominant role. It is believed that dance follows the laws of instrumental music, and instrumental music is an imitation of singing. This results from the fact that only in a human voice the sound appears most spontaneously, naturally, without needing an artificial mediator. In instrumental music, however, it occurs when externally exposed.

A voice is a breath drawn outwards (sura ‒ “sound”, “voice” and “breath”). In turn, the breath‒prana ‒ is the carrier of the divine substance in man.

In addition, one more sacred rite is concluded in the singing ‒ the word pronouncement, naming. The creative and influential power of the word, known in most cultures of the world, in India appears as a tradition of mantra yoga (Sufi Vasif). Together with thought and bodily movement, the word constitutes the well-known triad of the presentation of knowledge: “thought, word, deed”. Therefore, the pronunciation of words is also an art of transfiguration. Quite popular in India is the saying: “a word spoken a thousand times becomes a thing.” Ustad Inayat Khan mentions Indian muvakkali ‒ creatures that are created by the power of thought and sound.

The dance (nritya) turned out to be the most difficult component of the sangit. During the dance, a person perceives music literally with his whole body. The human body in Indian art is understood as a living sound resonator, responding to vibrations with each of its cells. While the dancer's feet knock out the rhythm, the eyes, eyebrows, hands move under the influence of the melody and make it visible. Therefore, it is quite natural that in such a system dance also acts as a kind of music.

According to Indian philosophy, vocals and dance are born from a combination of two principles that are akin to the female and male genders. Indian dance movements are of two types - tandava (courageous, furious) and lasya (feminine, graceful). In the North Indian musical tradition, the voice can also be of two types ‒ jelal ("power") and jamal ("beauty"). Their combination gives rise to a third type - considerable (“wisdom”), which corresponds to world harmony and the balance of elements.

In the "language" of music, sound first appears (necessary). Gradually, it develops into a melody, and then it acquires the "underfoot" ‒ a rhythmic basis. This is how Indian classical music develops to this day.

Thanks to the love of ancient Indian scholars to systematize and classify in India, the theory of music arose very early ‒ a complex, developed musical system.

In the heart of music, like the rest of the universe, lies silence (anahad), which, while unfolding, becomes audible. The emerged “first sound” ‒ breathing and over ‒ is still beyond the physical limits of reality: the ear does not perceive it, it only comprehends.

“Natya-Shastra” lists the sounds of a palm leaf, a fingernail, breathing or wind, skin or different parts of the body. However, the main instrument that everyone else aspires to is the human voice.

According to the Indian philosophy of art, as the sound is based on silence, so at the heart of the movement is stillness. The “Divinity of Art” is hidden by “layers of clothes,” but the goal of a person who comprehends the essence of art is to go through all the layers and reach this hidden one.

An interesting example of the associative links of movement and sound in Indian music and dance culture is that of T.E. Morozova: “Just as the music is based on the seven main stages ... referred to in India as sa, re, ha, ma, pa, dha, nor, and the“ support ”of Indian dance are seven articular parts of the body and hands, figuratively same names. The fingertip is taken for "sa", the following three finger joints are respectively "re", "ha" and "ma", the brush is "pa", the elbow is "dha", the shoulder is "none." The neck is denoted as “sa”, and further along the body line: shoulders are “re”, waist is “ha”, hip is “ma”, knee is “pa”, heel is “dha”, toe (toe ) ‒ "neither." The sounds of music, stacked in the bizarre curves of the hands and body, become visible. This technique of the synchronous following of a dancer for “sound design” as its “response” to music is figuratively called “alapana” (conversation, conversation). ”

The weld system forms thunder ‒ a scale that can be played in tune (murkhana). The last element of gandharvaveda according to "Natyashastra" is jati ‒ special motifs, melodic types (of which the concept of raga was later born).

The concept of time in Indian philosophy needs special attention. Time ‒ Kala, or Laya ‒ also means "destruction." According to philosophical views, by itself it has no value: “Actions that are not ordered in time disappear in vain - therefore, it is necessary to divide the day and night for the four guards following each other,” writes Rajashekhara in Kavyamimans (“Reasoning about poetry"). True, laya as a technical term in the theory of music and dance means a well-balanced flow rate of a certain rhythmic cycle.

The tal (taal) – metrical canon, rhythm, acts as a time-organizing phenomenon. Taladhyaya is the second section of Indian art sangit.

The idea of tala is as close to a person as his heartbeat, blinking of his eyes, breathing. The Universe is built according to rhythmic laws: this can be seen from the pulsation of the stars, the movement of the planets, the changing seasons of the year. Tal was the basis for the rise of time, ordering and dividing the initial flow of time moving through destruction. Music is a refined "double" of the visible world. Tal is an established system of dividing time, or a rhythmic cycle.

The first thing a dancer is taught in Indian classical dance is the rhythm built on tala, which should become his dance “breathing” and heart beat. For this you need quite a long time. It is difficult even for a musically educated European to comprehend the Indian tal system, because it differs from its usual rhythms.

The main signs of tala are rhythm (uniform periodicity) and cyclicity (frequency of structure). When on tkhe-ku - that is, on a specific number of rhythmic beats that sound in a certain order - they put a grid of pronounced syllables - bols, tal occurs. One passed circle (cycle) of tala is called avartan. The beginning and the end of avartan always coincide at the point of “self”.

Obviously, the origin of tala should be sought in poetic speech. The poetic dimensions, chhanda, known from the era of the Rig Veda, were prototypes of tals. It was on the basis of chands that musical tales arose. Musicologist Tamila Jani-zade points out that "in many singing genres of folklore ... the main structure-forming factor is not melody, but rhythm, and it all comes out of the rhythm of the verse." The melodies of Vedan singing, as well as the Jewish psalmody and the Gregorian chant, were largely subordinated to the rhythm and intonations of the texts being played.

There are several musical traditions in India. There are three of them: folklore, temple and academic. The first, Deshi Sangit, is not constrained by strict grammatical rules, has regional dialects, and its task is to “delight the hearts of people”. The second, Margi Sangit, “Music of the Way”, is associated with local religious cults and rites and is subject to their established laws. The origins of the last, highly organized musical system Gandharva Sangit, date back to Samaved. This music is classical, canonical, following the rules of the guidelines ‒ Shastras. Apparently, already in the era of the creation of the epos it existed as a developed art.

Musical instruments in Indian performing arts are the physical form of music. Their appearance (form and material) depends not only on local conditions, on the available natural resources, but also on philosophical ideas. The most ancient instruments were a kind of addition to the human body ‒ they were hung on the chest, tied to hands and feet.

One of these instruments, the ghunguru bells (in nupur or kinkani folklore dances), covering the dancer's ankles, became canonical for all styles of Indian classical dance. Bells are made from copper or an alloy of zinc and copper, sometimes from silver, strung on a long rope or sewn on a cuff ‒ from 100 to 200 pieces. Nandikeshvara in "Abhinaya Darpan" strongly advises stringing bells on a rope of dark blue color, as it is believed that this color predisposes to work.

One of the instruments leads a cyclic melodic line: when performed on sarangi it is called lehra, on harmony it is called ngma. The indispensable "participants" of the dance are the bells of the ghunguru on the feet of the dancer. The vocal part is performed both by the singer, and partly by the dancer himself (he can sing a song in a plot dance, and from time to time he recites parants in a pure dance).

By the 13th century. in Indian musical culture, there has been a division into two branches - the northern (Hindustani) and the southern (Carnatic). Bharat-natyam, kuchipudi, odissi, kathakali, mohini attam dance styles are based on the carnatic, kathak and manipuri musical tradition ‒ on hindustani.

Another interesting aspect of associative relationships was noted at the level of the nature of movement and sounds. Just as the music is based on seven basic steps (coinciding with the European major scale), referred to in India as sa, ha, ma, pa, dha, nor, and the “support” of Indian dance are seven joints of the body and arms, figuratively having the same names. The dancer takes the starting position, in which his trimmed figure should be like a straight line perpendicular to the floor, and his hands should be parallel to him. With the first sounds of music, the dancer's body begins to “come to life”. The flinching finger, “responding” to the sa, transmits its thrill to the other two joints (this sounded with re and ha), a small delay on the ma ... and the transition to the resistant position of the pas, expressed by a sharp bend in the hand; then the slight oscillations of the elbow, transmitting the sound of the dkha, are replaced by a sharp movement of the extended shoulder ‒ this is the sharp seventh step. Gradually, the shoulder lowers - the sound smoothly flows into steady sa, and the whole figure of the dancer freezes, expressing a state of rest. But with the new sound, the shoulder of the other hand did not rise, and the sound wave again visibly ran across the whole hand down to calm down and froze on the tip of her finger. Then the whole dancer figure is included in the “game with sounds”. There is an enchanting picture of reviving musical drawings, where the melodiousness of sounds, merging with the grace of movements, forms a surprisingly expressive harmony.

The harmonious unity of all means of stage expressiveness, in other words, the synthesis of several types of art (music, dance, drama) and generates a full-blooded organism of the Indian traditional theater proper.

Indian music, being very flexible, gives the dance a unique advantage. “We have,” said Indian singer and composer Udai Shankar, “countless percussion instruments, drums of various configurations and sizes, wind and string instruments on which you can achieve a magnificent expression of dance themes.” Stopping specifically on the issue of musical order, Uday emphasized that he was not inclined to introduce the principles of European harmonization into his music. He argued that Indian music itself has sufficiently rich means of expression, and therefore "... there is no need to endure both the Western method of harmonization and their instruments" [24].


Currently in India there are many very diverse dance traditions, among which are the following:

1. Classical dances.
2. Semiclassical dances.
3. Folk dancing.
4. Dance dances.

The greatest interest is undoubtedly caused by the classical forms of dance, the roots of which go back to the deep past ‒ in times of ritual temple worship. In total, seven such forms are distinguished:

1. Kuchipudi
2. Bharata Natyam
3. Kathak
4. Odissi
5. Kathakali
6. Manipuri
7. Mohiniattam

Each of them is based on three aspects: Nritta, Nritya and Natya.

The history of classical dance can be divided into three periods: the ancient (2nd century BC - 9th century AD), when the dance-plastic movements were an integral part of the classical Sanskrit drama; medieval (10‒18 centuries), when dance became an indispensable part of musical drama and acquired a number of regional features; modern ‒ when dance became an independent art form, while maintaining its position in the musical drama. Unlike European classical dance, designed to convey a certain mood through various techniques, Indian classical dance is always filled with specific content. Each movement of the legs, hands, eyes, eyebrows and other parts of the body has its own meaning, so the Indian classical dance can be read, and it is often accompanied by oral accompaniment of its content (dance recitative).

In order for all movements of a dancer or dancer to be clear, they are built on very rigid canonical principles, without knowing which, it is impossible to understand the content of the dance. In Indian classical dance all parts of the body are involved, which are subdivided into basic (head, arms, chest, waist, hips, legs) and auxiliary (eyes, eyebrows, nose, lips, chin, mouth, neck). In the Natya-Shastra (Treatise on Dance), there are 24 head movements, 26 eyeball movements, 6 eyebrow movements, and 4 neck movements. The connection of pure technique with the emotional mood of the dancer, which is transmitted through accentuated facial expressions, where the expression of the eyes plays a special role, the dance itself (nritya), in which the technique (nritta) is accompanied by acting (abhinaya), appropriate mood (race) and feeling (bhava), as well as musical accompaniment (sangita).

It was believed that these dances had magic and purity and were able to appease the Gods. In India, dances dedicated to the gods took their scenes from the ancient epic poems Ramayana, Mahabharata and other holy books. Dance is not only an art, but also a well-developed science. On the one hand, he trains our body, on the other ‒ it gives emotional relief. The first musicians and dancers were good mathematicians. They calculated and created diverse and very complex compositions, which showed their superiority over the others.

All great religious figures, from antiquity to our times, were professional dancers.

In Indian culture, the art of music and dance is divided into two areas: South Indian and North Indian. Although they are based on the same concept of music and dance, the way it is expressed is completely different. This is largely due to the fact that North India has undergone a number of political and cultural changes associated with the constant invasions of invaders from the countries of the Middle East and Europe. Each time they brought with them their culture, traditions and forcibly imposed them on the conquered people. In the south of India, outside influence was minimal, and the culture practically did not lose its original appearance. India has always been a hospitable country, where the cultures of other countries were respected and honored, and many artists from all over the world come here for cultural exchanges. All this once again proves that the dance of any country or even a small village on its territory is a reflection of the cultural, political, economic and spiritual level of development of the people inhabiting it, shows the richness and diversity of their taste and contributes to the development of cultural exchange between countries. This may seem strange, but a single dance can tell a lot about its region, the nature of the activities of the people inhabiting it, their traditions, life, geographical location of the region, climate, religious characteristics, level of education of the population, economic situation, you can even find out about reservoir in those places, etc. This directly indicates that dance is not only entertainment, but also a serious science, closely related to the psychology of man, reflecting his philosophy and worldview, showing the development of the human intellectual level.

Most of the dances, both folk and classical, can be identified with the help of gestures and movements used in them. In classical dances, they are more polished and clear, as individual self-improvement is an integral part of the performance.

The system of classical Indian dances exists on a rich theoretical basis, tested in practice for more than one thousand years.

The dance already existed in the early period of Indian history, recorded in the Vedas. The word “Veda” means knowledge and the Vedas contain sacred texts that are believed to have been recorded under divine inspiration. There are 4 Vedas ‒ Rig, Sama, Yajur and Atharva Vedas. Together they make up more than 20 thousand verses. Most of them are mantras ‒ hymns, prayers, songs, and magic spells. Appeal to different forces and natural manifestations of gods ‒ Indra (god of rain and thunder), Varuna (god of sky and oceans), Agni (god of fire). There are additional texts ‒ comments on the Vedas ‒ Brahmins, Aranyaks and Upanishads. It is not always easy to determine the date of creation of these works, but presumably they were written between 5-1 century BC. They make up the early literature of the Hindus and early immigrants to India ‒ the Aryans.

The dance is mentioned in Vedic literature and not only in the part of the rituals, but also as a way of folk entertainment. In the ceremony of Mahavrat, the girls placed jugs of water on their heads and danced around the sacred fire to ensure rain, harvest and prosperity of the people. During the wedding, the women, whose husbands were alive, danced a dance like sympathetic magic to ensure a happy and prolific life for the newlyweds. When a person died, those who accompanied the deceased should not despair, but should laugh and dance to make life better.

It is desirable that the girl know how to dance, because, according to the Vedas, the daughter must first be married to Soma, then to Gandharva, and only after that to Agni ‒ this means that she first learns to cook soma (intoxicating drink), then dance and sing, and only after that it is given to the man. Dancing, the woman gives the man pleasure.

Since antiquity, there were similarities of clubs, very popular among men and women, where they danced. Dancers wore decorated clothes and short blouses, while men decorated their breasts with gold.

The next period, symbolizing a milestone in Indian history, is the creation of two great epics, Ramayana and Mahabharata. Both of them are valuable evidence of the existence of dance as an art and assistant in ceremonies.

From the Ramayana we learn that Ayodhya, the capital of King Dasharathi, was always cheerful and lively with dancing and music. She had 4 main mandapas ‒ the hall, one of which was exclusively for dancers. The birth of Rama, his wedding and the coronation were a cause for great joy and reverence, which included the performance of hired dancers and musicians.

The next most important behind the Vedas, the Ramayana and the Mahabharata, as sacred literature of the Hindus, are the Puranas. There are 18 main Puranas and an equal number of auxiliary ones. Their compilation began around 1000 BC and ends around the 10th century AD. Dancing was a well-developed and systematic art form even during the early Puranas. Information about the dances was contained in such revered Puranas as the Vishnu Purana, the basic meaning of which is that in order to be a good sculptor or carver, you must first master the drawing and be a good artist and equally achieve the skill of the dancer. Some works also speak of dance as a panacea for all diseases, and also advise worshiping God through dance. Shiva Purana states in connection with the construction of Shiva temples that they should be provided among other things, 1000 beautiful girls who professionally owned two types of art ‒ singing and dancing. Devibhagavata-Purana prescribes sacred animals, virgins, and musical dance performances to be worshiped by the Devi (goddess).

Bhagavata Purana deserves special attention, as it contains a vividly developed description of the dance of Krishna, Rasa Leela, but it is better to turn to Agni Purana. It is believed that it was written about the 9th century AD. This Purana contains chapters on body movement and body parts in dance and in action. A lot of dance instructions were borrowed from two early classic works ‒Natya-Shastra and Dasarupak.

Of the early texts, the most important is the monumental work devoted to drama, dance, music and related to art, craft and aesthetics - “Natya-Shastra”, written in about 2 century BC, it contains 37 chapters, an exhaustive material in almost every aspect of the art of representation of technology, representations and their evaluation. The material has been scientifically analyzed and systematized and represents complete work. It is obvious that the art of dance, drama and music in India had a developed and highly developed structure and standardization. This means that 2000 years ago, India had a mature dance system based on knowledge, principles and rules. “Natya-Shastra” had followers such as “Abhinaya Darpana”, “Dasarupak” and “Sangit Ratnakar”, but they could not outshine “Natya-Shastra” as the source of the traditions of theatrical art in India. The period from the time of the Natya-Shastra to the 5th century AD It became the heyday of classical Indian literature: at that time three poets (writing in Sanskrit), Kalidasa, Bhasa and Shudraka, lived and immortalized themselves. Among them, Kalidasa showed particular awareness in the field of Indian art. Together they painted a true picture of the dance art in those days.

Kalidasa, who lived around the 5th century AD, wrote 4 poems and 3 plays, which together give an idea of the life of that era. Extremely gifted poet, Kalidasa was also well versed in the theory and practice of art. The dance was especially dear to him, he always spoke of him with tenderness, love, and understanding. Kalidasa extols the dance as the embodiment of all human moods and likens it to a holy feast pleasing to the eyes of the gods. How a dancer should play ‒ behavior, feelings in time, involvement in communication ‒ he described these and other nuances in detail. We know from Kalidasa that the dance was very loved and taken care of by the kings. He was often taught princesses, and palaces were equipped with special rooms for dance lessons. Women of high castes engaged in art willingly, and courtesans danced for entertainment. The teachers were mainly men; the training system went through individual coaching, not in schools or academies. From the poem Kalidasy, we learn that the city where the poet lived was a great center of art, and that the temple had girls ‒ dancers, whose business it was to dance before the evening divine service with small brooms in their hands. Even ordinary citizens were so familiar with this art that they could detect mistakes and flaws in the representation of girls ‒ dancers.

Kautilya (4th century BC) wrote the first work on the art of handicraft ‒ “Artha-Shastra”. From it we learn that such arts as dance, action, drawing, playing musical instruments and singing were under state control, which implied state responsibility for the training of professionals in these areas. Patanjali (2nd century BC) Also wrote Grammar, where he talks about two plays, Kamsavadha and Bolibandha, which, according to later teachings, are represented by facial expressions and gestures in a dance style. Around the 3rd century AD lived Vatsyayana, known as the author of erotic labor "Kama Sutra". He talks about the similarity of clubs in Vedic times, where people enjoyed music, dancing, and participated in poetic symposia, discussions and disputes on art. Vatsyayana gives a list of 64 arts in which dance and music occupy a high place and is considered necessary for the activities of all people. He argues that if the courtesan is skilled in these arts, she will delight rich men and have notable clients. Vatsyayana exposes the teachers of the dance: they were not very respected in society from the low castes, but they had an enviable status and were even highly influential.

All the authors and texts that we reviewed belong to the north of India. Now we are transported to the south of the country, where the indigenous Dravidian peoples have been preserved. The oldest among the Dravidian languages is Tamils and there is literature on it dating back to the Christian era. This gives us the opportunity to receive information about the life and culture of people in the southern region while writing “Natya-Shastra” in the north.

As you know, in the state of Tamil Nadu was the era of Sangam ‒ 5th century BC. ‒ 5th century AD. Sangam is an academy of writers, wards the state. In those days, several classic works were written in the social, political, religious, and cultural fields of knowledge. Not all these works have survived, but some have survived: they reveal the existence of certain types of dance in their ritual essence. These works contain a reference to dance, relating to every aspect of technique, learning, performance and repertoire.

Among the dances we meet with the presentation of the sacrifice of meat and drinks in honor of the Gods. The other dance was represented by the soldiers, after their triumphant return from the battlefield. There were also lyrical dances of women. Kings and nobles supported the arts, and the dancers were in their service constantly. When King Chera undertook a military march to the North, among others, there were more than a hundred dance girls with him. Courtesans held prominence in society, and dance was one of their positive qualities.

Buddhist literature, and to a lesser extent Jains, also contains information on the practice of dance in early times. Jataks, which are legends about previous incarnations of the Buddha (about 3 century BC), contain information on the dance. Before Gautama reached enlightenment and became a Buddha, the demon of evil tried to destroy him with the seductive demonic dance of Mary. Noticing for Gautama's penchant for spiritual practices and fearing that this might turn him away from worldly life, Gautama's parents tried to entertain him with dancers and singers in all three palaces. In one of the journeys the Buddha accepted an invitation from Amrapali, a famous courtesan and dancer, and ate with her. After the departure of Buddha, Amrapali became a Buddhist nun and founded a community ‒ the sangha or the order of Buddhist monks. When Buddha died, the community of his followers honored his remains with dances and music, and later, when a stupa was built to store remains and relics, they also sang and danced.

After the Vedic rituals, people gathered together for entertainment with music, dance, drama, acrobats, etc. Courtesans were a feature of society and were divided into several categories: those who received dance education without it. Some of the courtesans were women of noble birth and were under the auspices of kings and other nobles.

Kings and queens also sometimes danced. The lyrics mention the king who played wine when his wife danced. The classic work in the form of a dialogue between King Payasi and the monk Kesikumara describes 32 types of dance and dance drama with names and names unknown to Sanskrit literature. Over the centuries, the rather obvious predominance of dance was represented in sculpture, painting and iconography. The earliest object was found in Mohenjo-Daro ‒ an elegant bronze figure of a dancing girl belonging to the prehistoric Indian civilization of Wali (about 3500 BC). From 500 BC, we see the three great religions of India ‒ Brahmanism, Buddhism, and Jainism ‒ they grow and raise the flowering of art to express the expression of religious feelings. Buddhist monuments in Sanchi, Bharhut, Ajanti and Amaravati are among the earliest examples of this manifestation, and all contain dance figures. The reign of Gupta (4-5th centuries AD) is called the “golden age” of Indian art. During this period, under the auspices of the Gupta dynasty, strong and remarkable spiritual art was created ‒ Brahmanism and Buddhism. The Gupta reign ended after a memorable 160 years, but their determination gave impetus to the development and spread of art. The next 5 centuries passed under the rule of the Pallavov, Chalukya, and Rashtrakut dynasties ‒ the emergence of formally strong and intellectually mature forms of imagery.

At the same time, various styles were born in the North, impressed and stimulated by various dynasties that were in power in different regions, in different periods. With the arrival of the Mughals and their rule, dark clouds overshadowed the work and art of Hinduism. From the beginning of the 17th century, art was reborn in Rajasthan and Gujarat, and later on the heights of Punjab, it was introduced into Mughal art and a new culture of images and illustrations was born, based on Hindu themes.

The data outlined above are also the key to the evolution and development of Indian art. It is important that the gamma of artifacts from Mohenjo-Daro is the past of Rajasthan, and in the Pahari paintings the dance continues to exist as a favorite motif. There are tens of thousands of inscriptions, chronicles of the rule of kings, works of court poets or other writers, testimonies of foreign citizens - travelers, merchants, agents and missionaries, from which we can find out the date of the appearance of dance on the Indian scene. Not all information can be reliable, but it can assist in recreating the picture of the social life of society at different times of the life of the people.

An early dynasty in Indian history was the Mauryas (322 - 232 BC). The great emperor of the Mauryan dynasty was the famous Ashoka. He was a wise ruler, who imprinted the laws of Godliness on stone pillars and stones in crowded places. Known as the Edicts of Ashoka, these inscriptions mention places where people come together to entertain with music, dancing and the like. The prosperity of art was made possible by donations from each family. Refusal to pay or attempt to hide the tax was seen as an insult and insubordination to the law.

Megasfen, Ambassador of the Seleucids, arrived at the court of the first Maurian emperor, Chandragupta, and wrote the work of Indyka, in which he described the impression of the country and the people. This work was lost a long time ago, and only some fragments of it were cited by late Greek authors. Megasfen was the first foreign citizen to describe India at that time. He could also witness what can be described as the forerunner of the modern circus: “I myself watched the elephant playing cymbals while other elephants danced to his music, cymbals attached to his legs and he beat them with his trunk. Elephants danced all the time in a circle, raising and bending their front legs, following the musical rhythm. ”

Obviously, Megasfen could not isolate himself from the religion and culture of his people ‒ the Greeks, and perhaps because of this he sometimes speaks of Greek gods on the Indian scene. According to Greek legend, Dionysus in his campaign against the Indians hid the weapons of his troops and ordered them to wear light clothes and deer skins. The spears were wrapped with ivy. He gave the signal with cymbals and drums instead of pipes, when his enemies were distracted by wine and dance. Indian worship to other gods, and Dionysus is no exception, runs with cymbals and drums, because he taught this, and he taught them to dance satyrs. We can assume that dance prevailed in India during the time of Megasfen, including also a ritual for war.

In the modern state of Orissa, then known as the state of Kalinga, inscriptions of the 2nd century BC were found. They belong to the greatest king of Orissa, in whose reign art and architecture of Orissa entered a new phase of advancement. The inscriptions were found in one of the small caves originally intended for ascetics - the Jains. An inscription of more than one hundred lines praises the king and lists in chronological order his numerous victories during his 13-year reign. It is also mentioned that in the third year of his reign, the king organized a big celebration, which included dance and music in honor of the celebration of previous victories and achievements.

Chinese scholars I Ching and Nyen Tsang visited famous Buddhist monasteries and universities, where they learned that more than 10,000 students from all parts of India and even from abroad were studying here, and the curriculum included music and singing.

At the beginning of the 11th century, when the hordes of Mahmud Ghazni attacked Katiyavar and plundered the Somnath temple, according to the Persian chronicles of the time, they found 300 musicians and 500 dancers serving the temple.

In the time of the Pallavs (mid-6th-mid-9th century AD), we again meet with information about the practice of dance in southern India. The temple of Mukteshvara in Kanchipuram, which was built in the 9th century, contained several devadasis (servants of God) who sang and danced in regular worship services. King Mokhendravarshan I, who reigned from 600 to 630 years of the new era, wrote a farce in Sanskrit, in which he would restrain appeal to Shiva as a comprehensive dancer. All this suggests that the Pallavas perceived dance as sacred art and highly appreciated it. The successors of the Pallavs were Cholas, whose reign lasted about 400 years. During this period art flourished. King Rajaraja I, the greatest ruler of the dynasty, is especially noteworthy. Among his achievements is the construction of the Brihadishwara temple in Thanjavur, called the highest and largest among the Hindu temples. From the inscriptions we learn that Rajaraja hired hundreds of workers for the temple, among whom were 400 dancers ‒ devadasi, 212 dance teachers ‒ men, several musicians, tailors, goldsmiths, etc. Rajaraja was so attached to the dance that he had a unit in the temple, called adavalan, which means “one who can dance”, which is also an epithet of Shiva. Inscriptions in some of the other Tamil temples of the Cholov period indicate that the devadasi dance was a common feature of religious worship. It must be said that the famous figure of dancing Shiva - Nataraji was executed in the Chol dynasty.

In the 12th century, Mallinatha wrote a work known as the Mallinatha Purana, which provided reliable information about the dances of those days. In the second quarter of the 14th century, the kingdom of Vijayanagar was the most powerful in South India for more than 300 years. His rulers were courageous people, their wealth was fabulous, and they loved magnificent ceremonies. A large number of travelers arrived in Vijayanagar and many described life there in all details. Abdur Razzaq, who visited Vijayanagar during the reign of Deva Paradise II as the ambassador of Persia, witnessed the Duscher festival. In 1443, he wrote: “The singers were young girls. They sat behind a beautiful curtain opposite the king. Suddenly the curtain fell back, and the girls began to move gracefully, and the soul was filled with delight. ”

Domingo Payas, a Portuguese chronicler, also visited the Mahakavami in 1520. He wrote: “These holidays began on September 12 and lasted 9 days in the king’s palace. In the morning, the king comes to the Victory House and goes to the room where the brahmans are located, and he performs a prayer, then the ceremony begins. In front of the house there are several courtiers and many girls dancing in front of the temple and the statue of God for a long time. That's what happens every morning, all 9 days while the holiday lasts. "

Payas describes the palace of the ruler of Vijayanagar Krishnadeva Raya as a very large building. In one place he notes: “This hall is intended for the king and the dancers. It is long, but not very wide, there are sculptures on the columns. They are in dance poses, depicting the whole dance”. Payas also visited the temple of Ganapati, about which he wrote: “They feed the statue daily, and when he (Ganapati) eats, the women dance in front of him. Women are given food and everything they need, and all the girls born here belong to the temple. ”

The Jesuit Emmanuel de Vega described the festival of temple chariots in Vijayanagar in 1592: "After that, 30 women dancers came to dedicate themselves to lifelong service to a deity who could not marry, all beautifully and richly dressed and with burning lamps in their hands."

Among the first European travelers in India was Marco Polo, a Venetian who was called the "prince of medieval travel." He traveled through South India in 1292 ‒1293 and so he wrote about Malabar: “They have male and female idols, to whom they give their daughters nuns to sing and dance for the approval of the deity.” Duarte Barbossa ‒ the envoy of the Portuguese government was in India from 1500-1516. He wrote: “They teach their women from childhood to sing, play and dance, to do a lot of turns and easy steps. These women are very beautiful and self-confident ”. There were many musicians and dancers from Delhi, Lahore, Persia, and Khurasan at the court of Muhammad Shah (1378‒1397). Abdul Hassan from the Qutb Shakhov dynasty brought together a group of dancers and actors from the village of Kuchipudi.

In Tamil Nadu, the Cholov dynasty became the ruling dynasty ‒ Nayaki. The kings of Nayaks and many of their wives were very fond of art and literature, and among them there were many poets and dramatists. The historical poem mentions that the emperor regularly watched dances and listened to songs in the company of women of his court.

After Nayaks came Marathi, who were the rulers from 1674 to 1855, when the country passed into the hands of Britain. Marathi were the rulers who cultivated a love of the arts, such as music and dance. The number of works in music, dance and drama written during this period, and the dance art of devadasi reached a climax.

After a review of dance art, the so-called Dean, we return to the North. Now India was Mogul. When the Mughals came to power, they introduced their customs and manners. The Mughals were prone to riches and pleasures and were anxious to bring more entertainment to life, and the dance became one of the main attractions.

The Mughals ruled from 1526 to 1856. During Akbar, Jahangir, Shah Jahan, the political climate contributed to the flourishing of arts such as music and dance. One of the poems in Persian is devoted to Sangita, designated as “the art of singing, accompaniment and dance”. The author describes 8 main types of dancers and dances.

Akbar also introduced the celebration of "Nauryz" ‒ the New Year holiday borrowed from Persia. It was a 19-day holiday, when everyone was generous and generous, and the emperor invited courtiers to the palace to celebrate. Ordinary people also celebrated this holiday: "Singers and musicians flocked to the capital from places as far away as Persia, and dancers were very much needed." Another custom, grafted Akbar, was the celebration of the birthday of the Emperor, which was held with great fun in the capital. They gave gifts, lit bonfires, feasted and special dancers were invited to the court. The dancers were a feature of the life of that time; Francisco Pelsaert, a Dutchman, wrote in his protest: “There are many classes of dancers among them: Lolonis ‒ who come from Persia’s courtesans, and sing only in Persian; dancing to music represents the rocking of the body is not lustful, but rather modest. Horkenis and Hentsinis ‒ who perform various songs and dances. ”

Among the Sikhs, the great ruler was Maharaja Ranjit Singh, also known as the "Leo of Punjab". His weaknesses were dances and dancers, as the military secretary of the governor-general of India writes: “About two years ago, Ranjit Singh received a dancer from Lahore as a tribute. In the evening, the dancers arrived with music and fireworks. ” Ranjit Singh's whim was the content of 150 dancers selected among the best in Kashmir, Persia and Punjab. A dancer named Lotos said she owns seven villages that she received at various times from Ranjit Singh as a sign of his attention.

At the end of the 15th century Europeans ‒ Portuguese, Germans, British and French ‒ came to India, but not as travelers, but as traders. Trading, they tried to strengthen their position and divide the zone of influence. Adapted to the situation and dancing, there is a European version of the dance "Nauch", as they call it.

From the recordings of English immigrants, we learn that the British combined their dances with Indian art and used Nauch for entertainment. In a letter from East India, written in 1754, Mrs. Kindersley writes: "When a native tries to congratulate a European, he tries to dance." Speaking of dancers, she continues: "These languid views of them, immoral smiles and postures are not entirely consistent with decency."

But the story of Indian dance does not end there. There were many masters, patrons and dancers. Over time, many trends and styles have been developed, adapted to different conditions and regions. The history of Indian dance has more than three thousand years, and each generation contributed its own individual features and developed its own system. On the basis of classical dance, a modern dance, the Modern, appeared, the creation of which is associated with the acquaintance of the famous Indian dancer Uday Shankar with the Russian ballerina Anna Pavlova, who triumphantly toured India in 1921.

In 1924, in London, Anna Pavlova staged a ballet divertissement with Udai Shankar, which included “The Dance of Radha and Krishna”, “The Hindu Wedding” and “Frescoes of Ajanta”. Returning to India, Uday Shankar created his ballet troupe [12].

2.1 Brief history of styles. Bharata - Natyam

Indian dance originated in the south of India in Tamil Nadu in the period from 500 BC up to 500 year AD. The dance is called Bharata-Natyam after the first syllables of the words bhava (emotions), raga (melody), tala (rhythm). These elements are recognized as the main features of dance art in India.

Technique Bharata-Natyam developed over the centuries, but reached its current state in the first quarter of the 19th century. Originally, the dance was a ritual act, a prayer through the movements and gestures of the dancer. Secular dance has become since the mid 20-th century.

On the basis of classical dance, modern dance ‒ modern has emerged, the creation of which is associated with the acquaintance of the famous Indian dancer Uday Shankar with the Russian ballerina Anna Pavlova, who triumphantly toured India in 1921, which included “The Dance of Radha and Krishna”, “The Hindu Wedding” and “The Frescoes of Ajanta”. Returning to India, Uday Shankar formed his own ballet troupe [10].

Bharata-Natyam originated in the temples of Shiva mainly in the South of India in Tamil Nadu. In general, the dance was conceived as a plea, and in this case, strict rules were developed for each type of art, including the training (training) of dancers and ways of presentation.

An attempt to trace the evolution and development of Bharata-Natyam must begin with the early period of the famous Tamil Nadu history. It marks the Sangam period, which lasted from 500 BC to 500 AD. During this period, several literary works were written, the two most important epic poems. Both contain descriptions of the lives of dancers, chapters on technique and dance performance. Later, in the 12th century AD, scholarly commentaries were written on epic poems that shed light on some obscure passages from the original and on early Tamil texts that contained chapters on music and dance.

In all the early Tamil texts, dance has two main varieties: refined and organized style and dance for fun. The traditional classical dance, which probably evolved from the first variety, became known as Bharata-Natyam over time, and this name is now preserved. The name of the dance is an emotional projection, melody and rhythm, which are recognized by the three essential features of the art of dance. From literature and chronicles, we learn that the traditions of Bharata-Natyam are connected with the teaching of devadasis. However, the system of initiation of dancers in Hindu temples is very old; we find early confirmation in the existence of a cult in Tamil from the 7th century onwards. From the texts it can be concluded that the requirements for the devadasis from the temples of Tamil Nadu were completed around the 7th century new era.

Associated with devadasis, the art of dance was sacred. They danced in front of the images of God in the temple, as in a regular ritual and outside about the holidays, when the statue of God was carried in a festive procession. Later, the dance was also present at the court, and in such socially important rituals as the wedding.

The Bharata-Natyam technique developed over the centuries, but reached its present state only in the first quarter of the 19th century. This honor belongs to the four well-known Tanjourish brothers ‒ the great masters of dance and music, who lived at the court of Raja Serfoji II in Thanjavur. They not only systematized and codified the technique of dance, but also made up its modern repertoire. The name Bharata-Natyam, widespread today, came to art only in the second half of the 20th century. Modern Bharata-Natyam exists not as a religious rite, but as an art. Today, Bharata-Natyam is performed by both women and men, and they do not belong to special classes and associations.

Bharata-Natyam was created as a solo dance, but sometimes two dancers dance together. Holiday theater performances begin each night around 10 pm and end early in the morning. Artists and spectators (all local residents) are not professional actors and dancers, they come to the festival village. Dancers, both men and women, observe the customs of austerity ‒ purity, severity in personal and social life during the festival. Musicians perform with actors, and like actors and dancers, they participate in the performance not for the sake of earning and receiving remuneration, but for spiritual and moral satisfaction.

There is no curtain on the stage either before the beginning or after the performance, but according to the rules, before the first heroine leaves, the two volunteers pull the sari, dividing the world into a real and “sacred” place of the performance.

The modern name Bharata-Natyam is associated with a dance that connects all parts of a dance performance, but Bharata-Natyam is not only a dance style, technique, but a performance system. The tradition of classical dance and dance drama exists in three forms: Odissi, Mohini-attam and Kuchipudi, in which the structure of Bharata-Natyam exists in a modified form [19, 23, 25].

2.2. Brief history of styles. Odissi.

The state of Orissa may well be proud to have experienced many cultural influences. In different periods of its history, representatives of different races and beliefs conquered this land and promoted the confusion of ideas, concepts, and religions. The very location of the state - on the east coast of central India - led to the fact that waves of cultural and historical influence rolled over it, which in turn led to the emergence of a completely unique Jagannath philosophy. As in other regions of India, religious philosophy determined the development of the arts, and dance initially took refuge in a cult complex. And even now the holidays in Orissa are not complete without dance and music.

In the temples of Orissa dedicated to Shiva, there are still many intricate in design, amazingly made carved panels containing motives of worship to the god Shiva. The facades of many monuments of architecture of this period are decorated with images of Nataraja and other forms of Shiva and his son Ganesha. In the temple of Mukteshvar you can see the image of Shiva in the pose of tandava. There are also images of musicians, but not in static postures: rhythm and joy are felt in the movements of the performers. These images are connected by tangible threads with the plastic of the modern Odissi.

The kings who ruled Orissa between the 8th and 11th centuries were called Gandharva Kesari and Nritya Kesari. They clearly considered it a matter of honor to achieve heights in the art of dance and music. It was at that time that inscriptions were written in the Bhubaneshwar temple relating to devadasi women intended to serve the deity. Devadasi played an important role in the temple ritual ‒ they had to dance from the first twilight to the time when the god Jur Jonath, the temple deity Puri, went to sleep.

The temple of Jagannath in Puri, the citadel of Odissi, was built by the kings of the Ganges dynasty, who ruled for more than four centuries and acted as powerful patrons of art, architecture and religion. By that time, Ramanuja's Vishnuit philosophical system had spread throughout the country. However, the rites of worship of Shiva were not forgotten.

In the remarkable temple of the Sun in Konarak, built in the 13th century, with its Nata Mandap, or Hall of Dance, a series of sculptures depicting dance, probably the most complex in execution in India, has been preserved. This is a place of pilgrimage for all dancers and art lovers. Apparently, the hall was used for dance performances to the glory of the gods ‒ it is believed that the temple in Konarak invited a large number of dancers. The entire temple complex is built in the form of the chariot of the god of the sun, into which seven magnificent horses are harnessed. Sculptures dedicated to dance, especially in Nata Mandap, and its proximity to the sea emphasizes the unearthly beauty of the Dance Hall.

Around the 15th century, during the rule of the Surya dynasty, an abhinay, or dramatically expressive dance, appeared in Odissi. At the same time, Orissa reached the pinnacle of fame in the field of art and literature. The minister at the court of the king himself was engaged in the preparation of the devadasi. He ensured that dances based on Gita-Govinda were performed carefully and with feeling.

In the 15th century, Maheshwar Mohapatra, while at the court of King Narayanadeva, wrote his book Abhinaya Chandrika. This painstaking study by Odissi is still necessary to study this dance style.

By the 16th century in Orissa there were three types of dancers: mahari in temples, start at the royal court and gotipua in akhadahs (halls), which spoke to the audience. Only the mahari were allowed into the inner sacred premises of the temple. Their tradition was strictly observed, there were strict rules of behavior and etiquette for them. They entered into a simple "marriage" with the deity, and so began their service to him. Their ritual dances were performed in an atmosphere of high piety. Later, however, the lustfulness of representatives of the ruling circles and the British authorities led to the degeneration of this type of art, its religious elements lost their meaning, it turned into only a means of entertainment of the royal court. Many temples were completely abandoned.

During the period of religious revival in the 17th century, churches again became patrons of art. But the mahari gradually disappeared, their place was taken by the gotipua, boys, dressed as girls and having the necessary physical training in akhadahs. They performed Bandha Nritya consisting of complex sculptural poses and bends. Wealthy landowners patronized the gotipua troupe, which traveled around the state in groups, entertaining the public. Their virtuosity was based on the flexibility of their almost gymnastic style. Later, however, the simplicity of their dance was tarnished by a wave of vulgarization that touched both their costumes and their scenic manner. As soon as they began to compromise, their social status declined, and they also gradually became an endangered tribe of artists. But in fairness it should be noted that they were always good singers and dancers, and, despite the socio-political storms of the 17th century, when stagnation reigned in all areas of art, it was the gotipua who retained the basis for recreating the ancient tradition in the future.

By the beginning of the 17th century, the Mahari tradition had weakened significantly and by the 40s of the last century had disappeared completely. Nachuni disappeared in the 19th century. Only the gotipua remained, and it was their reconstructed repertoire that formed the basis of the new style. Proponents of rebirth considered the purified version of the gotipua repertoire, Abhinaya Chandrika and the numerous poses of dancers in the Odissi temples to be the authenticity measure of authenticity.

To this day, the Odissi dance style is present in this region and contains adapted elements: karanas, hastes, body movements and body parts that are based on Natya-Shastra and are not found in any other dance style. Almost all manuscripts are illustrated, and therefore the traditions of Odissi are remarkably preserved. The Odissi dance style has an exhaustive and most systematized technical vocabulary, including only one aspect of art [19, 25].

2.3. Brief history of styles. Mohini Attam

The history of the origin of the dance tradition of Mohini Attam (literally, “The Dance of the Enchantress”) dates back to the distant past of Kerala, a state in southwestern India. Its modern form, performed exclusively by women, arose, however, not so long ago and was inspired by the work of dance groups performing their compositions at various public holidays. Nanjyar Kuta is a variant of the female performance of the highly stylized Kutiyattama, which, in turn, is the surviving receiver of the so-called Sanskrit theater. The Mohini Attam repertoire, which reveals no connection with the temple tradition, nevertheless carries a certain element of initiation. Scientists of Kerala claim that no traces of women devadasi were found in the history of this region, and any evidence to refute this view allegedly originates from the state of Tamil Nadu, with which Kerala was once historically linked. Most often, this is a solo dance, especially noted for grace, fluidity, simple footwork, and repetitive rhythmic movements. Most of the compositions of this style tells about the games of the young Krishna with the cowherd boys. The theme of this dance is love and devotion to God. Spectators can feel his invisible presence when the heroine conveys in detail her dreams through rounded smooth movements, soft steps and refined expressions of emotions. Dancing at a slow and medium tempo, the performer is able to improvise and inspire the audience with bhava or emotions.

There are a number of historical evidence proving the existence of solo dancers. In the treatise called “Maniprala Cavias” there is mention of a female dancer. Typically, women ‒ dancers served only in temples Suchindram and Tripunitura, mostly they performed dances under the Tamil lyrics.

There were three types of dancers: Uttama or a noble woman, mostly of aristocratic descent, who were forced to take a vow of celibacy; Madhyam serving the Tantrists during the Kriya rituals; and Dashi, which were intended for rough daily work. A purely religious dance, Avayavam was performed, as a rule, sitting under Pann's short verse reading or chanting, and included a little footwork to the rhythm of one bell. According to historians, the dancers Mohini Attam have never been attached to a deity as devadasis. Unfortunately, by the beginning of the 14th century, little remained of the conservative and isolated style. By 16-17 centuries, such theatrical styles of dance as Krishnatta, Ramanatta, and later Kathakali, glorifying male dancers, somewhat pushed aside the female solo performance. Some historians believe that this was due to the fact that practically no one was allowed to watch the Mohini Attam dance. The only women's tradition, Nanjyar Kuta, was able to survive under the auspices of the temple.

For the first time, the word Mohini appears in the 18th century Malayalam comments on Vyavaharamala, which two centuries earlier was composed by the Majamangalam Narayanan Nambudiri. Much later in his work “Goshayatra” Kunjan Nambiyar, the creator of “Ottum Tullal”, also mentions Mohini Attam. Names such as Mohinilaye and Mokhinistan, are found near Maharaja Kartik Tirunal Malarama Verma (1724 - 1798 AD) in one of the most significant treatises on the performing art of Kerala of the 18th century ‒ "Balaramabharatea". But, none of these texts gives any idea of the form of dance, most widely used in that period.

Being a symbol of tranquil energy, Lord Vishnu, reclining on the serpent Shesha, who is surrounded by the rings, personifies the power of stability and unity of the Universe. There is a legend according to which Vishnu took the form of the charmer Mohini, when the gods and demons, who smelt the Causal Ocean in the hope of getting Amrita (the elixir of immortality), could not decide among themselves who she would get. Then Mohini cast a spell on demons, took the vessel with the elixir from them and gave it to the gods. She also came to the aid of Lord Shiva, who was pursued by the demon Bhasmasura. This demon, having received from Shiva the gift of destroying anyone on whom he laid his hand, wished to use this gift against Shiva himself. But Mohini distracted Bhasmasura from persecution, promising him that he would possess her if she surpassed her in a dance match. By causing Bhasmasura to repeat her every movement, Mohini eventually led the demon to put his hand on his own head and thus turned himself into ashes.

The frescoes of Padmanabhapuram and the palaces of Mattancheri confirm the popularity of the myths of Mohini. Thus, the very phrase Mohini Attam means either a dancer – enchantress, or a dance – magic. According to experts, the Mohini Attam dance tradition, being the personification of the magic of enchantment, emphasizes the dance through which the male deity is transformed into the female.

Two brothers from the Tanjore quartet, Vadivela and Shivanandam, after the fall of the Maratha kingdom in Tanjore, moved to the palace of Maharaja Tirunal following the dancers Nirajaksha and Satyabhama. It is said that Maharaja also married the dancer Sugandhavalli Tirunal, being himself a poet and composer, creating compositions for the women's dance tradition. The decoration of his court was also a Tajik musician, Parameshvara Bhagavatar. Therefore, it is not surprising that, with the exception of Cholkett, who included nritta (a non-semantic rhythmic dance) and reminded Shabdam in Dasyattam, with his emphasis on verses dedicated to God, which was performed instead of Alarip (dance-greeting), the character of dancing was similar to Bharata-natyam, especially in compositions such as Jatiswaram, Varnam, Padam and Tillana. The music was also Carnatic. After the death of Tirunal, representatives of the British authorities all that was left of the tradition of solo female dance art hastily sent to Central Kerala.

Therefore, when Vallattol and Mukunda Raj began to restore the dances of Kerala, solo female dance did not meet their high cultural standards. Existing dances like Mukkutti for the song “Have you not seen my nose ring?” And Kalabham Kuta, which are rather primitive in processing, were more suitable for entertainment. In them, the dancer first approached one man or another in search of her ring, and with gestures she asked, “Did you see my nose ring?” So close to the viewer was considered indecent. But, despite the rather defiant gestures, some witnesses claim that both the movements and the abhinaya (mimic) performers were not deprived of artistry. In another composition, Kalabham Kutu, a dancer in the role of nayika (the heroine in love) was preparing to meet her beloved, praising the cooling effect of sandalwood paste applied to the body to soothe the heat of unrequited love. With the arrival of the British, the British diplomatic representative, Colonel Monroe, imposed an official ban on Mohini Attam in Travancore and Cochin.

Kavalam Narayana Panikar and other authors worked hard to create contemporary music for Mohini Attam in order to give it a completely local sound. Neither the excessively slow theatrical music of Kathakali, nor the stylized ritualistic music of traditions like Mudiyettu, appealing to the awe-inspiring aspect of the goddess Bhagavati, corresponded to the music for Mohini Attam ‒ dance seduction.

The local music of Sopanam reminded the hymns of Tuevaram, which were performed in the temples of Tamil Nadu. According to Lila Omcheri, the term Sopanam, meaning “step” in Sanskrit, refers to a stepped musical structure in which each note of an ascending and descending scale becomes a pause, and the singer’s voice vibrates around that note until it moves to the next. Starting from an arbitrary scale or shadzh, Kopanam in its reconstructed form is performed at a slowly increasing pace [1, 19, 23].

2.4. Brief history of styles. Kuchipudi style.

The style of Kuchipudi is a classical dance movement that appeared more than 3,000 years ago in Andhra Pradesh as a form of dance drama with religious motifs. The presentation involves men and women.

The birthplace of Kuchipudi is a village called Kuchelapuram (the name of the town in Telugu language means "settlement of actors") in southern India, where the tradition of classical dance dates back to ancient times, as evidenced by the sculptural images of dancers in the Amaravati temples, sculptural images of apsaras, celestial dancers in the temples of South India (Qatarra Temple). The rajanartyki danced him ‒ girls who lived at the temples and were officially married to God.

According to legend, the eldest nephew of Sultan Mohamed Kuli Kutab-Shah Abdul Tan-Shah was sent to the village of Kuchipudi to provide it with water. By order of Tana-Shah, a well was dug. The joy of the inhabitants knew no bounds, and as a token of gratitude, they staged a grand performance in the form of their native dance. Abdul Tana-Shah, being a great connoisseur of art, was so impressed with the performance of a dance drama that he presented the artists to the village of Kuchipudi, taking a promise that they would continue the tradition from generation to generation. Since then, this style of dance and became known as Kuchipudi.

But he was popular long before Tana Shah. More than 3,000 years ago, Bharata Muni, who wrote Natya-Shastra, explained some aspects of the dance, referring specifically to the Kuchipudi dance form. In ancient temples and Buddhist monasteries, such as Nagaryunakonda, Amaravati and Ghantsala, there are also sculptural compositions from the Kuchipudi tradition.

However, Siddhendra Yoga, who lived a little more than 500 years ago, is considered the father of this style of dance, since it was he who gave Kuchipudi the form that we know to this day. Siddhendra Yoga was a poet from the highest caste of Brahmins. He wrote the dance drama "Bhama Kalapam" dedicated to God Krishna. According to tradition, Krishna saved his life when he was still a young man, and his name was simply Siddhappa. Immediately after the wedding ceremony, Siddhappa and his young beautiful wife, following the ancient tradition, crossed the river by boat. Suddenly, a terrible wind rose, the boat overturned, and the newlyweds began to sink. Then Siddhappa appealed to God for help, swearing that he would devote his whole life to spiritual service if he survived. The miracle happened - Siddhappa was saved. He fulfilled his oath and became henceforth Siddhendra Yoga.

Since its inception to the present, the Kuchipudi dance form has undergone many changes. Deriving from a religious tradition, Kuchipudi used to be performed only in temples and exclusively by men who belonged to the highest caste of Brahmins. They called the performers Bhagavatulu. Kuchipudi was originally a group dance form. The first group of Bhagavatulu was formed in 1502.

But as time went on, it was changing. The first important change was the transfer of views from the temples under the open sky, and then to the stage. Later, women were allowed to perform dance, and if, before men played female roles, then now women began to play even male ones. And the last extremely important change in Kuchipudi’s history was the appearance of a solo dance. At present, there are only three traditional groups of Bhagavatulu, the other performers, both men and women, dance solely solo. However, sometimes they are combined to stage dance dramas, but only on the occasion of important holidays.

Thus, the positive development of the Kuchipudi dance tradition not only expanded the sphere of manifestations of the dance itself, but also allowed each dancer or dancer to fully and freely express their individual characteristics [13, 19, 25].

2.5. Brief history of styles. Manipuri style.

Manipur is a land of extraordinary beauty, green, fertile, surrounded by mountains. It is the valley of the Serpent God, inhabited by the people, who consider human life and nature as gifts of God and consider dance and music as the most beautiful and most natural way of expressing gratitude. Each event ‒ birth, wedding, death ‒ serves as a reason for a beautiful ceremony and provides an opportunity for men, women and children to become witnesses and participants in a professional dance and music ritual.

Manipur is a land where myths and legends coexist with almost scientific explanations of phenomena, where a complex system of prophecies coexists with broad knowledge and deepest philosophy. These various influences are harmoniously combined in a person’s daily life. Rituals are not just formal rites, alienated from the aspirations of ordinary people. In one house you can see shrines testifying to spiritual aspirations, and a loom to meet purely economic needs. But most importantly, each person feels oneness with nature, and songs and dances are a means of confirming this.

Manipuri ‒ the name of the style (literally ‒ "the jewel of the earth"), originated in the state of Manipur under the influence of Vishnuism, which flourished there in the 15-18 centuries. This is mainly a ritual dance based on rich mythological material. The main plots are the story of the creation of the world (based on the Mahabharata) and the story of Krishna (Raslila).

The beautiful legend of deities is akin to Shiva and Parvati, which explains the meaning of the name Manipur. When Krishna and the gopis (cowherd boys) performed Raas-lila, Krishna invited Shiva to see that no one interfered with them. Shiva really wanted to look at their ecstatic dance, but Krishna did not allow, allowing him to stand only at the gate of the dance floor, and Shiva swore that he would always stand with his back to the dancers. Shiva kept his word, but the intoxicating sounds of the divine flute of Krishna and the ringing of the gopi's ankle bells did not give him rest.

He shared it with Parvati, and they decided to create their own Raas-Leela together. Descending from their Himalayan monastery, they found a fabulous valley full of water. Shiva threw his mighty trident into the mountainside. The water poured out through the hole that had formed, and then Shiva and Parvati began to dance with joy, and Ananta, the divine serpent, removed the precious stones from his hood and illuminated the valley with them. The glow of these stones gave the valley the name by which it is still known today ‒ Manipur, or the land of precious stones.

The creative work of gods and goddesses formed the basis of another tradition. It says that the Almighty rubbed his right hand and created nine gods, then rubbed his left hand and created seven goddesses. Gods and goddesses began to dance and with the movements of their hands and feet they created matter, and then heaps of earth. Having created eight heaps, they rested, fortified with food and drink. Sixty such heaps were created, and the gods and goddesses rested after every eight. Along the way, they measured the time units that exist now. Poong, meaning "heap of earth", is both a unit of time and a drum, with which the time cycle is repelled. Cosmic representations of the inhabitants of Manipur and the laws of existence are interwoven into this myth. To this day, no foreign influences could not bury the tradition of ritual playing out the history of the creation of the world. The chain of traditions in Manipur is inseparable and unchanging.

The cult of Vishnu began to dominate in Manipur during the reign of the great philosopher ‒ King Bhagya Chandra (1759-1798). This is an extremely important period in the history of the culture of Manipur. Bhagya Chandra was an enlightened king, deeply devoted to God. He was called Bhakta Rajarishi, or the ascetic king. There is evidence that he excelled in poetry, dance, music and philosophy, as well as in the art of governing the state, warfare and administration. These qualities were combined in him with humility, compassion and generosity. It is not surprising, therefore, that folk traditions ascribe to him all the human virtues.

During the reign of Bhagya Chandra, Manipur was attacked by the Burmese. Despite the fact that Manipur fiercely resisted, the superior forces and powers of the Burmese people decided everything, and Bhagya Chandra was forced to flee, seeking salvation from Svargadeva, the king of the neighboring state of Tekhou. Leaving Manipur after his defeat, as evidenced by the legends, Bhagya Chandra performed a ritual dance with the hengao spear on a rock that dangerously hung over a high precipice. Because of the strong wind that raged in the valley, even standing on a high cliff was not easy. And the dance of Bhagya Chandra was perceived as a divine blessing and foreshadowing his return to his kingdom.

The kings and queens of Manipur were traditionally experienced in dance and music. The queen could dance on the same square with commoners. Dance was not just a form of entertainment. It was an offering dedicated to the gods, and there were no barriers to social status and castes on the dance floor. It was believed that kings should embody the subtlety of aesthetic taste, and the rulers would compete with their predecessors, encouraging the development of oratory, poetry, dance and music. That is why tals are still identified with the rule of individual kings, which helps to chronologically arrange them and observe their development.

The story says that King Bhagya Chandra was sanctified by divine grace and the god Krishna himself allegedly appeared to him in a vision and expressed his desire that the dancers and musicians of Manipur sang Raas-lila. Inspired by the image of Krishna, Bhagya Chandra learned that there is a banyan tree from which the image of the deity is to be cut. The king and the elders went in search of the tree, but for a long time could not find it; almost despaired when they heard a boy playing flute in the forest. Considering this a divine sign, the king continued his search until he met a poor family living in an old house in a remote part of the forest. Near the house was found a giant banyan tree. When they began to chop it, blood started flowing from it. The tree was taken to the capital and an image of Krishna was carved out, which was consecrated among prayers and general exultation. This image has become sacred to the Vishnuite cult in Manipur.

Organizations grouped around the Krishna temple and the royal palace were custodians of artistic, administrative, religious, and literary traditions in Manipur. Their role continues to remain vital, for they constitute the highest body that preserves the highest level of study, interpretation and practical application of all that is based on tradition. These organizations are respected by the most eminent scholars and performers who seek their advice, in particular, Brahma Sabha on controversial religious issues, Pandit Loisans on controversial issues related to traditions, and Palais Loisans on dance and music. Even the kings of Manipur have always respected these organizations, their decision was considered final. Their jurisdiction covered the protocol and ceremonies in relation to the arts, they also observed the proper observance of rituals [1, 19, 25].


3.1. Bharata-Natyam

3.1.1. Style

Of all the types of classical dance in India, Bharata-Natyam is considered the oldest because it most closely matches the ancient texts about dance. This is the oldest and best preserved dance in the world, whose history goes back about 2 thousand years. Today, Bharata-Natyam is performed by both women and men, and they do not belong to special classes and associations. Bharata-Natyam is a dance that combines both the story and the technical side. These dances are most interesting for the viewer, difficult to perform, because the dance story is complicated by the need to constantly keep the viewer's attention, and technical dance requires tremendous physical training and ability to smile.

In ancient cultures, classical dance has never been a spontaneous emotional outburst. He was one of the ways of contact with knowledge and wisdom, a way of self-knowledge and realization. The training of Bharata-Natyam took place according to a strictly developed system, under the guidance of a teacher. Like a priest, a teacher is an intermediary transmitting Higher Knowledge. Its basis is the system of traditional lessons (adavu), the study of sign language is wise, and Abhinaia is the transmission of emotional states. In addition, students had to know the basics of music, classical singing, natuvangam - pronouncing rhythms, own the technique of applying makeup.

Introducing the art of dance, the Indian teacher (guru) simultaneously teaches the philosophy of life. Arangetram is a Tamil word for elevation, ascent. To learn the technique, it takes 6–7 years to go through margam. After classes with a guru, the dancer gets qualified. This is a test that verifies the teacher and talent, student's virtuosity. The female dancer, according to the authors, must conform to the ideas of female beauty, traditional in India. And also, should have absolute control over movements, steps and turns, be endowed with a good voice, be able to dance to the accompaniment of vocal and instrumental music. She should feel at ease during the dance, and know when to finish, and start the performances.

For centuries in the temples of the south of India it was performed by novices devadasi. Equally in this beautiful dance of Tamil Nadu there are movement, facial expressions and music. Religious in spirit, the dance is performed by a single dancer. The content of the dance is almost entirely determined by the rich mythological heritage of the Hindus. The technique of dance is directly or indirectly based on some ancient manuals, the earliest of which is “Natya-Shastra”, written almost two thousand years ago. Possessing a highly stylized and sophisticated technique, Bharata-Natyam equally uses the elements of Nritta and Nritya. Songs to the theme of love, but love is not sensual, they are performed solemnly, with a sublime mood. The technique of Bharata- Natyam’s development has been developed and perfected over the centuries, finally reaching the magnificent form that it has today.

The traditional form of dance performance in the style of Bharata-Natyam is solo, but nowadays there are mass performances involving several dancers, which gives the classical dance more entertainment. In addition, men appear on the scene more and more often, although previously they could only teach the art of dance, while they themselves did not take part in the performances.

It is believed that the word ”Bharata” consists of the speech syllables of the following words: ”bhava” (feeling), ”raga” (melody) and ”tala” (rhythm). There is another version according to which Bharata-Natyam got its name in honor of the legendary sage Bharata, the author of Natya-Shastra, written around the 2nd century AD. This work, along with another ancient text ”Abhinay Darpana”, dating back to 1000 AD, is the main theoretical tool for dance. The declaration of dance syllables was taken from the Rig Veda, four aspects of the dance were from the Yajur Veda, a song from the Sama Veda, and ways of expressing sentiment and emotion from the Atharva Veda. Having systematized all the information, “Natya Veda” appeared.

For 20 centuries Bharata-Natyam has remained the most popular classical dance of India, preserving the basic principles and technique of performance, it conveys fleeting moments of the soul, reflects its unity with the absolute. This is a kind of worship of gods. The dance calls for the poetics of movement, where expressiveness is achieved through the synthesis of emotions, movements, and a smile. Bharata-Natyam, being a classical dance school, developed his own system of hand gestures, fingers, which were the rarest expressive language in which a rich range of human senses was encoded. Various gestures, positions of one hand (asamyuta hasta), a combination of gestures of two hands (samyut hasta) make up a vocabulary of narration. Dancers use the mudra language (hasta mudra). Classical Indian dance (Bharata-Natyam for example) is primarily associated with the dance story, in fact, in one way or another adapting the Bharata-Natyam Hasta-Mudra system of gestures, absolutely everything can be explained to the unenlightened.

Based on the expressed value, hasta can be classified into three varieties: natural, interpretive and symbolic. Natural gestures can only mean natural values. Interpretative gestures convey objects and actions through an imitation of the characteristic features of everything that can be represented: animals, birds, actions. Symbolic gestures are used to express abstract concepts that are difficult to understand.

Narrative potential shocks the imagination. A very important role is given to the symbol and hint. The viewer should empathize with what is happening on the stage, draw in her imaginations links of the general chain of the performed action.

Bharata-Natyam is a sophisticated and complex form of dance art. This is a dynamic, earthly and very clear dance style. One of the most important aesthetic virtues is that in Bharata-Natyam there are no unfinished poses; each pose is always perfect. Accordingly, the movements are also ideal, the art of movement is so regulated that it simply cannot fail to admire. The simplest movements are so verified by the three parameters of sthana (body position in space), nritta hasta (hand gestures), and chaari (foot movements) that they look perfect. Retaining all the above features inherent in the South Indian styles, it is distinguished by strict geometric lines and a certain restraint in expressing emotions. Starting position - straightened torso, knees and wide-spread feet give the dance a strict and at the same time elegant symmetry, which is enhanced by the eloquent, expressive play of facial muscles. Then, the dancer's tilts and jumps, the most varied combinations of her movements, are superimposed on this initial dance pose. The eyes, head and hands of the dancer seem to draw circles, straight lines and triangles. In ancient times, these movements were in the nature of a magical action, but what they denote today, no one can explain. Basic poses are performed in the half-sitting or fully seated position, which should express attraction to the ground.

Emotion is always expressed, but it is not expression, but rather the symbolic designation of a particular feeling.

The main techniques are based on the following positions: deployed hips and bent knees, deployed feet (half-seated). The combinations of alternate stop on the heel and toe are widely used, but only within the basic posture. The exception is reduced to 2-3 combinations, in which the dancer takes a straight pose. The body is one. It is not divided into the chest and waist. Straight lines, diagonals, triangles ‒ the main motives of choreography and movements of actors in the dance.

To designate the simplest pas in Bharata-Natyam, Tamil names were adopted throughout the time. You can often see a dancer stomping on the floor with a sole in Bharata-Natyam, pushing the heel forward or to the side, sliding the leg along the floor in a sliding motion, quickly moving sideways, stretching her arms and legs in different directions, jumping performed in Muramandi (squatting on the floor), and also performs some pas, inherent only in this style, which ends the dance episode.

The combination of figures in the dance allows you to quickly change the direction of movement of the body. Some figures seem energetic, others are soft, some are performed on the spot and in the rhythm of the dance, others fall out of it, some positions provide for greater freedom of movement to the side, while others are performed by the dancer with the definite goal of coming forward from the back of the stage. Twists and jumps allow movement throughout the scene and movement on the floor. All this provides the choreographer with rich opportunities to compose a variety of compositions. A good dancer can dance very effectively even a small combination of Nritta. The performance of lengthy combinations does not indicate the skill of the dancer, but rather speaks of her endurance and self-control.

Hands in Bharata-Natyam are usually symmetrically located on both sides of the body. There are positions of the arms above the head, around the body and in a position where the arms are extended downwards or sideways at shoulder level. The symmetrical arrangement of the arms on both sides of the body conveys the dancer's relationship with the universe. Natiarambha or “the beginning of the dance” hands in front of the chest, not extending beyond the contours of the body; relaxed posture in which the arms are lowered along the body - dolahast. In this position are often depicted sculptural dancers. In all these postures, the position of the fingers may vary, but in the Nrite they do not bear any particular meaning, but only give the dance grace and variety. Hastas in nritye (plot dance) have a certain meaning.

Nritta, if possible, should transmit pure joy, not clouded by different races. The attention of the audience from the line of the body of the dancer and her movements is distracted by the facial expression. This is the difference between Indian dance and Western ballet, where the expression of the ballerina’s face and her movements is greatly influenced by the role she plays. The dancer Bharata-Natyam, if she does not participate in the performance, must refrain from distracting attention. It is necessary to understand that nritta is not a means of expressing different dance moods, it is just its beautiful episode.

To some extent, the dancers portray the rook on a chessboard. They do not know how to walk diagonally, but only very rarely, for particularly spectacular passes through the stage.

The basis of Bharata-Natyam is Karana - 108 poses, mudras and hasts ‒ the positions of fingers and hands, adavu ‒ the technical basis of the style. Adavu is a phrase, a unit of dance, a short and elegant composition, a specific stop following the prescribed combination of steps and movements. Each Adavu is determined by the cymbal rhythm. There are more than 15 "Adavu", each has many options. Adavu are joined together in various combinations. The Adavu combination, known as “Jatis”, has many variations, subordinated to the rhythm, used to beautify the Nrita.

“Angahara” is a chain consisting of 6–9 karanas. The number of angahar – 32; their names coincide with the name of karan. In karanas, the body as a whole takes fixed postures, and the a angahara is a continuous change of postures and positions. If an angahara is phrases, sentences, then karanas are letters (alphabet) in action.

“Rechaka” is the next technical method ‒ lifting up, movements around the body, as well as rotation by various parts of the body, which are used, both in phrases (angahara) and in letters. There are 4 types of river: for the neck, for the hands, for the waist, for the legs. "Pindy" is the next technique, it is a sequence of phrases (angahar), each letter (karana), consists of a series of poses.

There is also a musical sequence used as a key position in Nrite, it is known as “Tirmanaiq”. It can be assumed that Nrita as part of Bharata-Natyam consists only of Adavu, Jatis and Tirmanaik, but there are also other movements, steps, postures and sequences, but their number and diversity is of lesser importance.

Abhinaya ‒ transfer of emotional and psychological states through the face. It is inherent in a variety of movements with an emphasis on tapping, jumping and turning. The main compositional figures of the dance are poses with arms and legs stretched out, accompanied by movements and a unique change of hand gestures. The main figures are balanced poses with arms and legs extended, which gives the dance some linearity. In this dance, beauty and strength, slowness and speeding, pure dance and pantomime are equally felt. Professional dancers have a deep understanding of the ideological and philosophical content of Indian myths and legends, and are fluent in dance techniques. The transmission of various forms of poetic text is a real exam for the dancer's professional skill. She plays the role of the main character of the work and depicts her various states. The song can be performed by a dancer or musicians. The face of the dancer should register the momentary emotions, passions that come from the words of the song and the direction of the music; eyes, eyebrows, mouth, lips and cheeks are a potential tool for suggestion and hints. To be able to express the smallest shades of feelings, a dancer must be a truly creative, inspired person. It is the ability of the dancer to convey the plot of the dance at different semantic levels and attracts the attention of the audience. When performing solo, the individuality of interpretation depends on the age of the dancer, her training, artistic taste, experience, knowledge and talent. Dance is performed by the group and individually.

Abhinaya is achieved in four ways ‒ angika ‒ body, arms and legs, whack ‒ song and speech. Vachika includes articulation, intonation, accent, pitch, as well as recitation, diction, use of major languages, dialects, images of speech, decoration of rhetoric and rhythm. Aharja ‒ make-up, costumes, body coloring and body parts, the use of artificial beard, hair, weapons, accessories, such as an umbrella, banners, ships and masks. Elements of stage decoration and props are not used in Nattier, so the viewer must exercise in the imagination. Satvika ‒ moods and feelings: joy, grief, anger, surprise, bliss ‒ all these feelings have their own dance version of mimic expression. In the “Natya-Shastra”, almost 80 positions are recognized for registering fleeting nuances of feelings by face. Only the eyes are able to express 36 types of views, which are individual or in combination: eyebrows; eyelids; eyelashes; eyes are pupils. Hands, arms, breasts, sides, abdomen, waist, hips, legs and feet ‒ everything has its own meaning and special instructions for their use. There are also various types of gait, jumps and body rotation.

Head positions.

Slowly from side to side (sadness, surprise, impatience).

Quickly from side to side (I do not want, cold, fever, excitement, horror).

Up to the side (proudly look at your features, look at objects, maintaining self-esteem).

Down (meditation in yourself, point to a place, ask for food).

Up, down quickly (agreeing to anger, persuading, scolding, question).

Twice down leisurely (praise, inquire, make a hint, give instructions, suggest sitting down, expressing thoughts).

Raise your head (self-confidence).

Rotate (confine fear).

The Greeks in their theater used masks so that you could understand who the villain was and who the hero was. In Bharata-Natyam there are no villains and heroes, but there is an opportunity to convey to the viewer the feelings that both the hero and the villain can experience. Much, however, is left to the viewer's imagination, and for this reason a significant role in the Indian classical dance is given to a hint and symbol. In turn, the dancer is faced with the task of not only creating an image by transmitting his moods and sensations, but also arousing similar feelings in the audience. Then it becomes clear why, according to the Indian tradition, members of the audience (rasika) should know the dance technique as well as its performer.

Common to all schools of classical dance are the elements of tandava and lasya. These terms introduce into the aesthetics of dance the central concept of the philosophical thought of the Hindus ‒ the principle of masculine and feminine principles. Tandava ‒ masculine, as the name implies, means all-heroic, bold and decisive; Lasia ‒ feminine, all soft and graceful. It does not at all mean that only men use the first elements in the dance, and only women use the second elements. It should be noted that all these definitions ‒ nritta, nritya, natya, tandava and lasya, etc. ‒ do not mean any particular type of dance, these are only technical elements inherent in various types of classical dances.

Nritta is the dance itself, free movement of the body for the sake of their own beauty. The dance is not intended to tell the viewer anything. Nritya, on the other hand, is a purely expressive dance, aimed at expressing a particular meaning, theme. Achieve this through facial expressions, conditional gestures and symbolic body positions. The third element of the dance, natya, like nritya, includes facial expressions and gestures, but, moreover, it contains speech, an element of drama. The technique of dance is to use all the expressive means of the human body by the dancer. The dancer has a wonderful language ‒ hasta mudra, or sign language. With the movements of one or two hands, the dancer opens a whole world of images before the viewer. A lotus flower slowly opens its petals, luring bees, a deer wanders in the forest, a fish splashes in invisible ponds, fingers quickly squeeze ‒ and now this is a warrior’s fist, a curved hand ‒ a cobra ready for attack. The fingers placed before the lips turn the dancer into Krishna, playing the flute, the bent fingers ‒ the tiger's tense paw.

Emotional beginning must necessarily dominate in the performance, which is why Bharata paid great attention to the “races” ‒ manifestations of various moods. He describes eight such “races” and claims that one of them should set the tone for the whole play. The connection between what is happening on the stage and the auditorium is established by means of a “race”. In the conditional framework of grammar and technology of dance there is a large proportion of improvisation - the dancer is not only free to show his skill, he is expected to be treated creatively and certain parts of the dance. In Natya, there are many aspects of expressing emotions in dance and drama: Nayaka and Nayka, respectively the bride and groom, or the hero and heroine. In the general classification there are: about 150 variants of Nayaks and more than 1000 variants of Naik. This is due to the fact that a woman is more emotional. This classification is associated with education, age, sexual characteristics, and finally, love. The dancer becomes a kind of architect, using movements for the construction of the building, and only depends on him whether the building will stand or collapse.

There is no curtain on the stage either before the beginning or after the performance, but according to the rules, before the release of the first heroine, the two volunteers pull the sari, dividing the world into a real and “sacred” place of the performance. She performs a short dance, usually “Alarippa” behind this curtain, and then leaves.

The main dance program (Margam) of the classic Indian dance Bharata - Natyam includes up to 8 different dances, such as: Allaripa, Jatisvaram, Shabdam, Varnam, Padam, Ashtapadi, Kirtanam and Tillan. The whole program lasts about 2 hours.

Technical dances are built on the principle ‒ the farther from the beginning, the faster the pace (count to four at a normal slow pace, note the time taken by the stopwatch (it should go a little more than five seconds) ‒ this is the first speed, now for the same interval count up to eight, this is the second speed, and now for the same tiny interval count to sixteen ‒ this is the third speed). Imagine that for each account should move the simultaneous movement of arms and legs. At the first speed ‒ this is real, at the second ‒ conveniently, at the third ‒ this is impossible.

Bharata-Natyam begins with the number alapripa, which creates the impression of a gradually opening body as an offering to God. Looking sideways and gracefully shaking her head, the dancer spreads this movement throughout the body. One after the other, then smooth, sharp movements strictly follow the rhythm of the drum of the mridangam and the conductor nattuvar's singing, and dozens of rhythm types are beaten out with ankles on the ankles.

“Allaripa” is a dance spell that helps to present oneself through movements and rhythms to God. “Allaripa” ‒ the composition of the Nritas and some categories belong to two other points; “Jatishwaram”, which synchronizes patterns of beats and musical notes and “Tillan” ‒ in which various rhythms, poses and movements are woven into a sequence of syllables reproduced in a musical refrain. Nritya is represented by dances like “Shabdam”, “Kirtanam” and “Shlokam”, which describe the attributes of some gods and incidents from their lives. ”Padam” ‒ the transfer of meaning through erotic feeling and love lyrics has a symbolic spiritual meaning. Jawali also contains erotica. The main themes of ”Padam” and ”Jawali” are the love affairs of the divine heroes of Hindu mythology, such as Krishna and Kartikeya. The sophistication of the dancer in pure dance, manifested in the rooms of Jatisvaram and Tillan, and in mimic compositions such as Shabdam and Padam, reaches its full expression in the central part of Bharata-Natyam, called the varnam, and requires the greatest tension from the dancer of all physical and emotional forces.

Nritta, the purely dancing part of Bharata-Natyam, includes alarripa, jatisvaram and tilana. In alarippa, the symmetric movements of the dancer are in harmony with the reciter's recitative; In addition to the recitative, jatisvaram introduces the furious voice singing corresponding to this rage, or melodic line; In Tilana, the vocal accompaniment gradually unfolds into a stew, while the dancer demonstrates a series of static postures, and then rapidly changing positions. In a pure Nritta dance, straight lines of movement form geometrical figures in space. Nritya includes shabdam, varnam, padam and javali, which are performed with songs telling about different life situations.

The longest and most difficult part is the Varnam. He combines Nrita and Nritya, in equal shares. Now it lasts about 20 minutes, although it used to be about 3 hours and represents a real test for the skill, skill and abilities of the performer. The composition consists of a song praising God, a hero or a king, and when it is performed, the words of the song are reproduced with the help of Abhinai. The song, however, does not consist of verses and verses. At the beginning of the composition or between the different parts, “Nrita” are performed sequentially, in most forms of “Jatish” and “Tirmanam”. These parts of Nrita have no purpose and meaning, except for decoration, but they still bind the pattern into a whole. The other part of Bharata-Natyam uses songs created for this dance, except for “Varnam” and “Svarojati”, which use special compositions for this style; the lyrics of others consist of a wide range of poetic literature in the languages of Tamil, Telugu, Sanskrit and to a lesser extent Kannada. This list includes the sacred songs of the South of India. The Bharata-Natyam style accompaniment is the pure style of Karnataka music.

Bharata-Natyam is based on the Karnatak music system and its rhythmic cycles, or tala. The musical accompaniment should contain the rhythmic potential for pure dance and the corresponding literary content for the plot dance. Mridangam ‒ the main percussion instrument of South India ‒ has one body, unlike the northern tabla, which consists of two separate parts ‒ with a lower and higher register, each of which is played with one hand. The syllables, or rhythmic sounds of mridangam, are inherent in Bharata-Natyam, they are pronounced or sung as an accompaniment to abstract parts of the dance - nritta.

As in music, the notes have the names “sa-ri-ga-ma-pa-dha-ni”, so in the dance there are drum syllables: tat-dhita, taka-dhimi, naka-jham, tadhin-gin, etc. Various combinations of these phrases during their sounding give pure dance fragments ‒ nritta piquancy and expressiveness. Combinations of such phrases are called dokaty, and in any dance representation the virtuosity and skill of nattuvanar are determined by the correct construction of these dokat into complex rhythmic figures in a certain time cycle.

The word tala comes from the word denoting the ”surface of the palm”, which beats the rhythm. There is a hypothesis regarding the word ”tala”, according to which it consists of the first syllables of two words: Tandava and Lasya, which romantically implies the merging of the male and female principles or forms of rhythm. There are seven tala. Each of them can use any of the five dokat options, which gives us a total of 35 different tala.

In the past, the dancer accompanied the orchestra, who was behind her on stage. It consisted of one or two nattuvanars who played on cymbals and sang songs, a boy whose only task was to maintain a monotonous monotonous sound, or shruti (pitch tone) with the help of a small box and a clarinet. The clarinet, once quite popular, was later replaced by a flute. This was demanded by “Abhinaya Darpana”, and this situation persisted until the 20s of our century, when the stage conventions changed. In today's concerts, the musicians sit to the right of the dancer, closer to the front edge of the stage. The orchestra consists of: nattuvanar, singer, tanpur player who replaced the primitive box of shruti, flutist, violinist and musician playing wine.

However, the times are changing, and many hours of performance has become much shorter, today it lasts about one and a half hours. The mythological content of the lyrics, based on the episodes from the Mahabharata and Ramayana, is replaced by the poems of modern poets. No longer used musical instruments such as clay pots. Dancers of Bharata-Natyam abroad often use phonogram [14, 19, 23, 25].

3.1.2. Suit

The performers of Indian classical dance looks very impressive. The dancer Bharata-Natyam is no exception. She is dressed in a colorful costume and has so many jewels that it is not clear how she can move at all ‒ not something that she selflessly dances. The dancer's costume is a rich sari from Kanchipuram. Kanchipuram is a city famous for its finest silk sarees with traditional, embroidered gold thread ornaments around the edges. Contrasting colors are usually preferred for the scene, so that the color of the ornament stands out from the sari itself. Mustard, green and red colors are usually associated with the dance of Bharata-Natyam. A bright monophonic sari with a wide border is wrapped around the waist and gathered into folds that unfold as a fan when the performer takes a pose. It is tightly wrapped around the hips and legs of the dancer, its end is laid in a small fold and passed through the belt in front. The loose end of the sari is folded over the chest, slung over the shoulder and secured to the waist with a beautiful belt.

The dancer's hair is braided in braids and adorned with fresh jasmine flowers, and a bright tassel or pompon at the end of the braid. A pearl thread runs along the parting, ending on the forehead with a flat gold ornament. Two large round hairpins on either side of the parting symbolize the sun and the moon. Gold earrings, bracelets, rings, necklace with pendant in the middle and necklace sparkle with red, white and green stones. In Bharata-Natyam use red, white, and green semi-precious stones set in gold or gilded silver.

However, times change, and the appearance of the dancers and the dance itself change. Increasingly, they abandon the sari, preferring more comfortable, unrestricted clothing, do not perform some ritual dances, such as snake dance or numbers with jugs and lamps. Saris are worn differently, their length, as a rule, just below the calf. Sewn suits imitating saris are in fashion now. Thanks to the costume, the dancer maintains a neat appearance and eliminates the need to wind nine meters of heavy matter around herself. The modern devadas suit consists of a well-fitting, short, with a sleeve to the elbow, a very bright ”Choli” ‒ blouses, narrow, right along the leg of ”Shalvarov” ‒ pants and a certain amount of ”Sari”, one end of which is folded in front between the legs and the other is stretched across the back to the chest, and is also folded.

The whole costume is usually made of shiny silk or brocade. After the revival of the Hindu art of dance and in the present dancers have a version of the costume sewn, and not wound every time. The face is usually not decorated, but the eyes necessarily highlight a broad black line, resembling a lotus petal. Her eyes are enlarged and lengthened with a special black paint with a cajal that makes them more expressive, between the eyebrows there is a tiny red moon. The dancers paint their fingertips in red paint, draw circles or other patterns on their palms, and draw a line along their feet. The palms and soles should be painted red. There are many jewelry ‒ necklace, lining on the head, earrings, ”Nath” ‒ a ring in the nose, rings on the fingers, bracelets on the wrists and legs, cuffs, belt. Also essential are fresh flowers that adorn: the back of the head and the whole braid. And there are also bells consisting of bells from 50-100 pieces per leg, which serve as an accompaniment to a dancer.

Male characters use “Kurt” ‒ a knee-length shirt and shalvaras narrow in the leg or “Dhoti” ‒ a bandage around the hips and legs in the form of pants, and a jacket, some also have a “Turban” ‒ a bandage around the head, a false beard and mustache.

3.2. Kuchipudi

3.2.1. Style

Kuchipudi's unique charm lies in the subtle combination of dramatic and classical dance with scenes from the Indian epic, abstract and graphic dance are combined here with a pronounced dramatic element. Kuchipudi is both a dance and a drama, as the dancers still play and pronounce the lyrics. The Kuchipudi technique uses fast, rhythmic footwork and sculpted body movements. Stylized facial expressions, the use of hand gestures and subtle expression of the face combine with a more realistic action. Vigorous jumps and turns, a bold and full of feelings of the eyes, extraordinary speed and precision of movements are replaced by a cascade of frozen sculpted poses, then to spin with a new force in the whirlwind of this extraordinary dance. All this requires dancers to have excellent physical training, excellent plastics, wise knowledge (or hand gestures of sacred significance) and excellent Abhinaia (the art of pantomime). The combination of all these qualities, plus the presence of a huge internal energy and a well-developed ability to instantly transform into images, leads the audience to perceive the art of dance as a light, energizing, fascinating act.

In Kuchipudi, an element of pure dance, Jatisvaram and Tillan, is used, and special props are sometimes introduced ‒ the dancer, for example, balancing on the edges of a copper dish, holding a jug of water on her head, and performing complex shapes. Nritya often includes excerpts from a dance drama, such as Bhamakalapam. Padam and Jawali are the same as in Bharata-Natyam. The movements in Kuchipudi are round and swift and combine smooth steps with jumps. Kuchipudi performed at a fast pace. Musical accompaniment, as in Bharata-Natyam, is the Indian music school of Karnatak, performed on the same instruments.

The famous dancer and teacher of Vempati Chinna Satiam Garu brought Kuchipudi style to the big stage and gained his recognition and respect. Such famous dancers as Vijayantimala, Hema Malini, Sonal Mansingh, Yemini Krishnamurti and others studied at the Vempati Academy in Madras.

Age of students from 6 to 26 years. The course of study at the Academy is 5 years. Students learn the theory of dance based on the Natya-Shastra, dance moves from simple to complex, the basics of rhythm (tala), music and singing. Only after studying the base of movements you can start dancing compositions. The first of these is “Purvarangam” ‒ a prayer and an appeal to the gods, an appeal to their spiritual mentor ‒ the Guru, and also a greeting from the audience, where art experts and connoisseurs gathered. Usually a concert program begins with this dance. Kuchipudi includes not only canonical genres ‒ koutvam, jatisvaram, tilan, tarangam, but also plot dances built on ancient legends about the life of the gods - about the coming of Vishnu to earth (“Avatar Vishnu”), about Krishna, Shiva and Parvati. Jatiswaram and Tillana ‒ technical compositions. They are characterized by a fast rhythm, jumps, a variety of poses. Tarangam is a genre unique to Kuchipudi’s style, whose compositions contain narrative episodes from the life of God Krishna and require a virtuoso technique of performance, the top of which is a dance on a brass plate. Generally speaking, if we talk about different styles of Indian classical dance, Kuchipudi is one of the fastest and most complex in terms of technique.

Kuchipudi style has a rather extensive and well-developed theoretical base. Every aspect of Abhinay, or the expressive means available to man, is described in detail in such a competent treatise as Natya-shastra, written by the great Bharat Muni. Kuchipudi follows the Natya-Shastra more than any other dance form in India.

Sattvika Abhinaya dominates mainly in Natak (drama), Angik Abkhinaya is expressed in Nritta (pure dance, technique) and both are equivalent in Nrity (solo dance). In Angika Abhinay there are three groups:

1. Angas
- Shiras (head)
- Hastas (gestures)
- Vaksha (chest)
- parshva (side)
- roll (hips)
- padas (foot)

2. Pratyangas
- Scadhe (shoulders)
- bahu (hands)
- prshtam (back)
- shock (belly)
- Uru (outer thigh)
- jangha (upper leg)

3. Upangas:
- Drshti (eyes)
- bhru (eyebrows)
- putta (eyelids)
- capola (cheeks)
- nasaka (nose)
- Khan (jaw)
- adhara (lower lip)
- Dasana (teeth)
- jihva (tongue)
- Vadana (person)
- gulbha (ankle)
- anguly (fingers)

The Pratyangas and Upangas movements always depend on the Angas.

Hastas (hand gestures) are part of Angika Abhinaya and include ways of expression through the physical body (head, eyes, nose, hands, etc.). Despite the fact that the expression through gestures takes only a small part in Angika Abhinay, their role is very important. They have not only decorative meaning, but also show the specificity of communication and actions in relation to objects.

The dance compositions of this style are based on five different rhythmic variations: 1. Chaturarasra (a rhythm that measures 4: that kadkhi mi), 2. Tisram (3: that ki ta); 3. Misram (7) (that ki that, that kadkhi Khandam (5: that that kak that that); 5. Sankirnam (9: that that kadhi, that, that that ki that). In a composition all these rhythms interlace among themselves, forming exciting musical drawings, voiced by the bell on the ankles of the dancer.

Nine different moods of "Navaras" form the basis of the dancer's acting skills:

1. Love ‒ Shringara; 2. Joy ‒ Hasya; 3. Sorrow ‒ Karuna; 4. Anger ‒ Rudra; 5. Heroism ‒ Vira; 6. Fear ‒ Bhayanaka; 7. Revulsion ‒ Bibhatsa; 8. Surprise ‒ Adbhuta; 9. Peace ‒ Shanta. In addition to the nine basic ones, the ancient treatises also call 50 other sentiments “bhava”, nuances of feelings.
2. The program of Kuchipudi style performances can include from 5 to 10 dance compositions.
3. The presence of “tarangam” in the repertoire makes Kuchipudi special: while performing this composition, the dancer balances on the sharp edges of the copper dish, sometimes holding a small jug of water on her head.
4. Nritta is a rhythmic sequence ending in either song or verse; Nritya (or Shabdam) is a collection of rhythmic patterns, each of which follows a certain pantomime interpretation (or abhinay) and, finally, Natya is a complete dance drama with a unfolding storyline and various characters.
5. Each dance form, in fact, is a unique combination of these three aspects and, of course, each of them has its own zest. But Kuchipudi, however, is considered the most beautiful and most complex form of dance of all of the above [10, 12, 13].

3.2.2. Suit

The phenomenon of Indian dance costume is in the continuity of the cultural tradition. Like any other oriental theater, the ancient Indian classical theater is conventional and does not imply any scenery. The main means of expression ‒ the characters' robes, color, shape, make-up pattern.

In the ancient Indian cultural tradition, there is a certain canon of female beauty. His description is found in a variety of literary monuments. It is indisputable that the authority on which Indian writers were guided was the treatise on the art of love “Kama Sutra” (3–4 centuries AD). Female beauty here follows an ideal image of her: heavy rounded breasts, slender waist with three lovely folds, wide hips. Graceful hands are likened to vines, hands and feet to lotuses; charming faces are comparable to the disc of the moon, sensual lips are like the scarlet fruits of bimba, a long section of the eyes under the fractures of thin eyebrows is brought to the ears with antimony; blue-black curled locks of hair fall down onto the gentle shoulders. And the make-up of the dancer, drawing this conditional image, brings it to the model level, extracts femininity and beauty extracts from it: the face brightens, the eyes are thickly surrounded with black “arrows”, the own eyebrows form is often hidden, and “canonical” eyebrows are drawn on top.

There is also, but not always applied, the practice of “improving” the figure: to fill the lack of volumes, special inserts made of soft materials (for example, foam rubber) are sewn into the corresponding parts of the dance costume.

The Kuchipudi dance costume is traditionally bright, it uses a large amount of jewelry. Initially, women wrapped their figures in sari made of pure silk of rich colors with a contrasting border. Nowadays, ready-made, made-out of the same saris, costumes are more often used. This saves time and effort in preparing for the performance, and also provides ample opportunities for the imagination of actors and costume designers. The costume consists of several parts:

- blouse ‒ there are two options ‒ short, ending under the breast, or long to the hips;
- chest covers the "apron", neatly laid narrow folds, leaving a border on the shoulder and back, and a wide edge attached to the waist;
- loose trousers tied to the bottom, folded along the length of the legs; pleating, beautifully revealing a fan in the dance and deep plies;
- a hem with two or three folds, reaching to the waist, is sewn to the bottom of one of the legs;
- the wide Basque completely sewn into the hips, sewn into the left side seam of the pants; its manufacture is the richest edge of the sari - anchal;
- a short fan, often decorated with tassels, is also sewn to the belt.

The variations of details are different: instead of pants, a skirt sewn in front with pleats can be used, while plain cotton trousers should be worn down. Wide pleating, an indispensable attribute of the southern classical style. The skirt can be oblique or straight, have one or more levels of folds.

In general, the costume is stylized as a sari, draped in one way or another on the body. Also, the men's suit reminds of the dhoti, which, like the sari, was a single piece of cloth, wrapped around the hips in a certain way. Men's suit pants consist of the same set of details. The dancer's torso is more often exposed, the chest and arms are richly decorated, and a sacred brahmin cord, reminiscent of an ancient privilege, is slung over his shoulder - only members of this varna could perform ritual dances.

All of the above is true for solo performances and regular concerts. When it comes to performances and plot drama, the canonical costume set design comes into force, where each demonic, positive or neutral character is distinguished by the color of the costume, the characteristic attributes and often the make-up mask.

Since most of the plots are borrowed from mythology, special attention is paid to ensure that the costume properly determines the character's belonging to the category of celestials or people. High crowns, an abundance of jewelry on the chest and forearms distinguish high-born heroes.

For the image of Krishna, the gray-blue makeup of his skin is used ‒ “the colors of thunderclouds”, a peacock feather adorns his head, and a flute in his hands (or on his belt).

Shiva, as a rule, is baleen, his red curls are gathered into a bundle, topped with a crescent, with a third eye visible on his forehead.

Satyabhama, the beloved and devoted husband of Krishna, is dressed in a bright sari. It personifies the soul that it seeks to merge with God Krishna, the universal principle and the single driving force. The little parrot on her head symbolizes all life in this world, and the head of a snake - knowledge and wisdom.

Satyabhama is the main character in most of the plays in Kuchipudi. A richly decorated braid, “jada”, always comes down her back. This is an attribute of a married woman and, perhaps, the main decoration of the Kuchipudi dancer. According to the canon, jada consists of 27 parts ‒ 27 “stars”. At the end of the braid, three balls are tied up ‒ the symbol of three worlds; three more are attached to each of these three balls: 9 small balls represent 9 planets.

On the head there is a gilded jewelry with semiprecious stones and pearls, the four parts of which symbolize the 4 Vedas, and the two details resemble brooches on the sides of the head ‒ the Sun (on the right) and the Moon (on the left).

Previously, all items were made of light wood and covered with golden paint. Now the head ornaments are metal, and the braid is more often decorated with orange or, more rarely, white flowers.

These colors adorn the hairstyle of the dancer. This is a rather complex construction of two, and even three “bagels” of artificial hair, creating a crown-like appearance on the head. In the middle of the donut, a round Racody ornament is attached.

Two or three necklaces are included in the dance jewelry package. The earrings have a traditional dome-shaped shape, and additional details are attached to them, which are located along the ear and attached to the hair. The nose is decorated with three items at once ‒ natx. On the wrists and forearms a variety of golden bracelets. The waist is covered with the same color metal belt.

The upper phalanges of the fingers and feet are painted with a special scarlet paint ‒ alto. In the old days, these beauties emphasized the feminine charm of the lines of these parts of the body, and in the dance, the paint adds refinement and clarity to the movements.

On the ankle worn ghungkhru, wide leather bracelets with a lot (up to 40 pieces on each leg) of small bells. These bells are a full-fledged musical instrument, during performance they clearly beat off a given rhythm. Each dancer honors and recognizes his ghungkhra for a sacred object. It is assumed before the performance to put the bells in front of the image of Shiva, and then take them from the hands of the Teacher.

3.3. Odissi

3.3.1. Style

Odissi's temple dance, whose tradition was formed thousands of years ago on the east coast of India, is performed for God. This is a kind of meditation, conversation with Him, admiration for His unearthly beauty, strength, glory, knowledge, wealth.

All the hypostases of the Creator, his divine energy cause the dancer's delight, she tries to reflect His actions in the movements of the dance. Her fractional seconds of being reincarnated from angry Narasimha to a compassionate Buddha can be envied by our most gifted actors, brought up in the traditions of the school of experiencing. It is the experience, the state of mind, the subtle nuances of relationships that have found expression in the whole science of "races" that underlie Odissi.

The style of Odissi is close to Bharata-Natyam, by technique, costume and expressive means. Like Bharata-Natyam, Odissi was performed in temples by mahari dancers and served as a dedication to God. Thus, in the temple of Jagannath, one of the most revered in all of India, the Odissi dances were performed twice a day ‒ during the morning offering ceremony to God and during the night service.

But, if Bharata-Natyam is a cascade of fast and canonized dance combinations, then Odissi is more fluid, has graceful movements, graceful postures, and the music accompanying these dances is more melodic. At the heart of Odissi are the richest means of technology, in this style there are many written down in the texts or the rules transmitted orally. The positions of the legs, the setting of the foot on the toe or heel, body posture, body bends, movement and walking movements ‒ all together is a beautiful sight. These are very stylized, subtle and elegant movements that create the impression that the body of a dancer constantly adopts postures that delight the eye and deliver aesthetic pleasure.

Odissi has his own extraordinary charm, harmony of lines of movement, this is a very “sculptural” style of dance. Its main quality is refinement, and the aesthetics of style is built on the close connection of poetry and music. Dance is an expression of the joy of a person through movement. When this pure expression and released energy is enclosed in a classical framework, they must strictly adhere to certain technical rules. Odissi contrasts sharply with the Kathak style and even denies the basis of his technique, since the Odissi technique is based on the principle that the human body should use its flexibility.

Odissi's style contains Nrita ‒ technical elements and gestures (meaningless), as a source of technical elements for Nritya ‒ narration, improvisation; Both of these elements are used for productions, but in different themes of the Odissi style repertoire. Classical musical accompaniment: traditional musical instruments are used ‒ drum, minor cymbals and flute. In our time began to use the violin, sitar, wine (stringed plucked instruments).

Odissi is a style of Indian classical dance that originates in religion. Most of the themes of the Odissi repertoire have a religious bias. One number lasts about 40 minutes, which begins with a short dance ‒ a spell and ends with the culmination of a pure, rhythmic dance. Only the last 30 years, this tradition is broken, and new themes are included in the repertoire of this art.

Nrita (pure dance) is present in the form of postures, bends of the body and basic pieces of equipment. The text is transmitted through expressive dance. The final theme in the Odissi style is the sequence of Nrita (pure dance), represented at a fast pace.

Dancers and dancers were brought up in gymnasiums based in different parts of the state. Their dances were dramatized and accompanied by acrobatic elements.

More recently, a new repertoire was invented to represent Odissi. The performance requires the dancer to have lyrical grace and charm, precise observance of poses resembling temple carvings. The details of the costume, ornament and make-up of the Odissi dance are set out in various antique texts. An integral part of the Odissi dance is a combination of physical and emotional aspects, resulting in a trance state at the conclusion of the performance.

Most of the dance poses of Odissi repeat the temple sculptures of Orissa. The array of the temple in Konarak, erected in honor of the sun god, and several places of worship of Shiva in Bhubaneshwar are particularly rich in carvings based on technical elements of the Odissi style. It can be said without exaggeration that there is a large part of the “dictionary” of the Odissi style represented in stone. And these attributes give the Odissi style a privileged position among traditional classical dances in India.

Odissi's style differs from other styles in that the body of the dancer, firmly fixed in a single unit in Bharata Natyame and slightly softened in the upper part in Kuchipudi, acquires a characteristic bend, tribhanga, breaking straight lines in the neck and waist.

The Odissi technique is based on chouk (square) ‒ a pose in which the arms and legs are bent at a right angle, with elbows and knees spread apart. By the nature of this is a male pose, body weight is distributed evenly on both legs ‒ samabhanga. This is a pose of the god Jagannath, reflecting the balance and inclusiveness of his dharma. A characteristic feature of the Odissi is the bhanga ‒ or the fracture of the human body with a shift of the head, torso and hips; the latter is achieved by inclining the weight of the body on one leg. Abhanga ‒ posture with a displaced center of gravity, in which the weight of the body is shifted to one leg, while the other is bent at the knee in a standing or half sitting position.

The next pose is the tribhanga (triangle), in which the body bends three times, so that the lines of the arms and legs form triangles. The line of the body is broken in the knees, in the waist and in the neck. And hands, ankles and legs form triangles of various sizes. This is the most interesting pose in Odissi. This is an unbalanced figure, which is not only extremely difficult to achieve, but also requires a lot of self-control and self-control from the dancer; if she wants to do it beautifully and gracefully. There is something airy about her, and, unlike the choke, she is very feminine. When the tribhanga is performed without due attention, it makes a terrifying impression, for it exaggeratedly, to deformity, emphasizes the forms of the female body. Tribhanga is represented in sculptural images of female figures and is based, like sculpture, on the Hindu concept of iconography. The Tribhang is engraved in many sculptures and is pivotal for Odissi, although in other Indian classical dances a center of gravity shift is not allowed. Having mastered these fundamental beginnings, the dancers begin to complicate the technique at the expense of the belis, that is, various kinds of movement units. There are innumerable chari, or walking styles, and the student must learn to emphasize different patterns of movement in bhumi. The purely dancing elements of Odissi are mangalacharan, batu, pallavi and mokkhiya. In Batu, a dancer makes sudden movements, as if striking the strings of guilt or playing flute, drum-mridanga and cymbals. Dancing on a certain stew on a certain stew, the dancer creates images of amazing beauty, made up of sculptural poses. In mokkhiya, which is a kind of finale, the abstract dance moves of the dancer end with smooth jumps.

The music in Odissi is very lyrical, and the tribhanga naturally flows into her mood or melodic figure. In most other styles of classical dance, the transfer of body weight from one foot to the other is prohibited, but for Odissi this triple bend is the very essence of the style. Another feature of the Odissi is that the movements of the body directly correspond to the positions of movement of the lower parts of the body. The legs hold the moving body firmly, the hips are immobile. The upper part of the body makes soft, wavy movements in an upright position, the head is constantly rejected in the direction opposite to the body, creating a very beautiful, lyrical, spectacular effect. The significance of this movement in the Odissi is often underestimated, and the very restrained movement of the upper body, especially the back, turns into a movement of the hips, which, although easier to perform, is not aesthetically pleasing. It is this movement of the torso that gives Odissi its special shade.

Odissi's legs also have some unusual movements. First of all, around the dancer on the floor there are certain points on which he puts his foot. The legs move sideways, and the knees are spread far apart. The dancer often, before placing his foot on the floor, raises it with the toe pulled down or lifts up without bending, high up. Perhaps a circular motion, when the foot is placed on the floor from the side, and the whole body follows it in the same wave-like manner. This is a particularly exciting moment in dance. Often a dancer puts her foot forward, then lifts it up and moves it backwards with a spiral movement. Sometimes the performer goes on the heels, raising her socks, and goes back in this position, making circular movements with her hands.

Padabheads are the positions of the legs: itself, Kumbh, Dhana, Maha, Eka, Drinked, Nupura, Suchi, Ashrita, Trasya and Rekha. Combinations of body positions and legs give rise to a variety of basic poses, exceeding the usual stock of other styles. In the positions of the feet it is unusual that sometimes a dancer touches the floor with a heel or just a toe. Chari, or gait, is a way of moving around the stage. Each chari is quite complex, they differ in speed of execution and value. The dance depicts numerous variants of the female gait; it is compared with the gait of various animals, most often swan, peacock, deer and elephant.

Bhumi, the movement pattern on the stage, is closely related to the padabhead, or the positions of the legs, and the bhangi, the body postures mentioned earlier. Bhumi also denotes part of the scene around the dancer. Legs move in a certain way, outlining a circle, square or semicircle. The legs are extended from the center point forward and sideways so that the outlined circle becomes larger. It has been suggested that the delineation of circles and squares by the movements of a dancer around the scene goes back to the tantric cults that were once so strong in Orissa. In Tantra, circle and square are of great importance. However, future dancers who study Odissi do not think about the meaning of these bhumis, seeking only to learn the movements and often unaware of a possible explanation.

Brahmarie ‒ turns, or circular movements around the vertical axis. Ekapada brahmari is a special figure when the performer makes a full turn on one leg in the position of the chowk or tribhang, raising the foot of one leg to the level of the knee of the other, in front or behind. This turn is either clockwise or counterclockwise. Only in brahmari and during turns the body moves in a horizontal plane.

In Nritje, or the Odissi storyline dance, the hasts convey the meaning of the songs and adorn the fragments of pure dance. In each style of classical dance, especially in Kathakali, Bharata Natyam and Odissi, the hates described in “Abhinaya Darpan” are widespread. However, dancers of every style, especially Kathakali and Odissi, also adhere to their own non-canonical texts, and the performer of Odissi follows “Abhinaye Chandrike” by Maheshvara Mohapatra.

Odissi uses several of the hastas described in Abhinaya Chandrika and are completely different from those found in Bharata Natyam or Kathakali. These hastes exist today; they are passed down orally from generation to generation.

Natya, or the dramatic element of dance, existed in Orissa already at the time when the gotipuas performed in jatra groups. These troupes were maintained by a local Zemindar, or landowner. Their programs were built rather as theatrical performances with dances, in which the plot was played by several dancers. The tradition of these dance dramas developed unevenly. Over the past thirty years, more interest has been shown in solo performances on stage. However, some gurus, who had many students, still found a way to preserve the tradition. Among them, it is necessary to mention the guru Kelucharan Mokhapatra, who was the choreographer of some numbers, as well as dance dramas and used classical technique, appropriate orchestral accompaniment, several actors, costumes and a change of scenery.

Nowadays, the Odissi performer is usually accompanied by a musician playing mardale, a flutist and a singer. Mardala ‒ is a traditional drum played by a guru, playing the boli, or pronouncing loudly drum syllables, accompanying pure dance fragments in a composition. Manjirs, small copper plates, are effectively used to maintain the subtle nuances of rhythmic accompaniment. According to tradition, the mahari sang themselves, but as a result of the dance going on to the stage and into the big halls, this task was undertaken by a professional singer. Nowadays, the dancer Odissi is sometimes accompanied by a sitarist ‒ instead of the usual violinist in the past, who appeared as a result of the influence of the traditions of neighboring Karnataka. However, most often from the instrumentalists invited flutist [5, 12, 25].

3.3.2. Suit

The Odissi dancer costume is a practical and comfortable silk sari. Ornament on a sari is characteristic only for Orissa. Perhaps the mahari wore it differently, and it is possible that their clothes were decorated with multi-colored stones, but in our time the performers have refused this. Only dancers, guarding traditions, change little in their costume. Jewelry is made of silver, although, perhaps, gold was used for this purpose earlier. On the head of the performer is the decoration of the mathamani, in the ears is a beaker, on the wrists are bahichudi or tayita, at the waist there is a belt of fine work; on her ankles are ringing bells strung on one strap; and on the neck is a necklace with a medallion, padak-tilaka.

In addition, the Odissi dancers build themselves a very complex hairstyle in the shape of a beam, decorated with tahiya, a miniature image of a temple gopura (tower); wreaths of flowers are woven into the hair. In addition to the usual make-up, which is used by the performers of classical dance, the dancer Odissi applies a line along the eyebrows to the cheekbones with sandalwood paste. And finally, a red liquid that is applied to the palms and soles [12,18].

3.4. Mohini Attam

3.4.1. Style

Since ancient times, Mohini Attam dance has been performed only by women, and it has the special charm of feminine grace and gentleness. The repertoire of Mohini Attam is small. This is, above all, a purely abstract dance, in which the main is rocking the upper part of the body, and the location of the legs, close to the ple. When emphasizing the direction of movement of the eyes play an important role. Curving with her whole body, the dancer demonstrates smooth movements, as if imitating the rocking of a boat on a brisbane ‒ a picture customary for a Kerala resident. At the end, the dancer plays the plot from the Ramayana, using appropriate mimic means and sign language. In Nritya ‒ dance themes, where the means of expression are facial expressions, eye and hand movements, inspired by the works of famous Indian poets. Sign language is designed as subtly as in the great dance drama of Kerala Kathakali, whose elements influenced the Mohini Attam dance.

The geometry of the movements and the basic technique of Mohini Attam display unforgettable images of Kerala's nature: coconut palm leaves swaying in the wind; boats swinging in the waves and creating patterns of divergent circles on the water. It is an endless source of energy, which unfolds in a spiral, as the Kundalini Shakti (sleeping energy) gradually awakens, creeping up the spine. In circular whirlpools there is no point that would symbolize the beginning or the end. This is the churning of the ocean, as a result of which Mohini appeared ‒ it came out of the same waters where God Vishnu was reclining on his bed of serpentine rings. It seems that all these images unite in Mohini Attam, in smooth circular movements of the body, which constitute the central element of the dance. The flexibility of the waist, shoulders, elbows, wrists is developed within the framework of the Andolic discipline and cannot go beyond the limits of the established norms. The movement starts from the center of the body and goes to the limbs, or, on the contrary, starts from the limbs and goes to the center. Simultaneously with the swinging torso, the lower part of the body is in the position of the semi-plie with the knees turned to the sides, which form a square rather than a triangular shape. True, there is no unanimous opinion among the dancers regarding the distance between the feet. Eye movements, although not as sophisticated as in Kathakali, are quite alive. Grace and nobility emphasize a snow-white suit with a gold border, a specially modeled outfit that replaced the 9-meter sari, which was in fashion 35-40 years ago.

The temples of Kerala also incorporated elements of a circle, full of rounded borders, in contrast to the awesome verticality and engraved lines of Tamil Nadu temples. The same aesthetics are reflected in the processing of dances. In Mohini Attam, it is the movements of the torso (andolika) that echo the curls of musical patterns. Edekka, a percussion instrument used in Mohini Attam, is also called a “singing drum.” Its sound also has some rounded softness, different from the carved clarity of Bharata - Natyam or Bolov Katkhak.

The modern Mohini Attam is a polished version of a style that has undergone significant changes. Initially, the Mohini Attam teachers were men. When the famous Kalamandalam school just rushed to its creative flight to Mohini Attam, Guru Krishna Panikkar already had abbreviated Varnam, Padam and such compositions as Rasacrida and Gopi Vastraparanaharanam in the repertoire, which are in many respects similar to the tradition of Krishnattam and Kaikotkitali and Tyruskirati group dance and Kirikatikarahamunaram, which are in many respects similar to the tradition of Krishnattam and Kaikotkitali and Tyruskirati group dance. Footwork (steppe) included the elements of Tullal, Padayani and Arjunanrittam. Kalyani Amma, one of the early teachers of Kalamandalam (circa 1933-34), presented a number similar to Taranu, which she named Hindustani.

To date, the performers Mohini Attam have quite clear views on art, which is reflected in their style of dance. Kerala Kalamandalam, remaining in tight isolation from other schools, generally does not recognize any other style than their own.

The current repertoire of Mohini Attam consists of such narrative parts as Jiva, Tyanis, Padamy Swati Tyrunal, compositions by Irayan Tampi, Cholkettu, Dandakam, as well as some literary works of Kerala recently discovered. And Guru Kavalam helped remove all remaining signs of Dasyattam influence from the dance.

Gita Govindam Ashtapadi is a mandatory number for any artist Mohini Attam. In general, each dancer interprets the compositions in her own way. A dance that is fully based on charming grace, combined with the virtuosity of rhythmic movements, can be difficult for the modern public to perceive, unable to concentrate its attention for a long time. For a change, modern performers are experimenting with themes from the Mahabharata.

In Kerala, where dance is viewed from the point of view of the development of a repertoire, the government introduced the practice of holding Mohini Attam competitions in schools and colleges. This led to an increase in the number of performers, but, unfortunately, did not improve the level of performance.

Mohini Attam has achieved access to the international scene. Already in 1959, an American woman named Betty Jones arrived in Calamandalam to study dance. Its monogram for the University of Pennsylvania is one of the earliest works devoted to the study of the Mohini Attam style. In Melbourne (Australia), Tara Rajkumar, a Kathakali and Mohini Attam performer who studied with such Gurus as Krishnan Nair and Kalyanututamma, successfully led the establishment of Natya Sudha, where Indians and Australians study both styles [10, 12, 23, 25].

3.4.2. Suit

The costume is usually white or cream, with a gold border. Jewelry ‒ anklets and jasmine garlands on hair twisted into a bun. The makeup is realistic, unlike most styles of Kerala.

3.5. Manipuri

3.5.1. Style

In the culture of Manipura, there is a strong tantric influence. It is reflected in the Saivite creation legend. The process of creation was called the union of heaven and earth. It is believed that dance and its origin are closely related to the creation of the world. The presentation on this legend is an integral part of the Lai Haraoba, an elaborate festival of dance and music. Laipou is a dance of creation and is now being performed at every festival of the Lai Charaoba in its original form. Annurol ‒ ritual dance, described in the ancient Manipur texts, is also performed at this festival. This allows us to trace the origins of the dance, going back to the legendary age of piety, and to the period when, according to belief, the worship of fire, the purest and oldest form of deity known to man, began.

The Lai Charaoba ritual, which reproduces the process of creation of the universe, begins with the declaration of the original nothing, or emptiness. Then water appears ‒ men in white and women in robes in pink stripes offer sacrifices and banners to the river. These men and women are Maiba and Maibi, according to tradition the high priests and priestesses of Manipur. The excellent connoisseurs of the sacred texts who have mastered the skill of the soothsayers, they are the main characters in all important ceremonies. Gold and silver objects representing the earth and the sky are sacrificed to water. Maibi dip ceremonial leaves into the water, which is considered the source of life. The inhabitants of Manipur evoke her divine energy by music.

When a deity enters a maibi, it speaks with its lips. He is solemnly accompanied back to the temple to the loud sounds of pipes. On the way, dancers demonstrate their art three times in honor of the deity. The following days of ceremonies, dance and music are held according to a strictly prescribed ritual. Twisting lines are drawn on the ground, various dance ceremonies are performed; it is believed that they will bring prosperity to the village.

Hicham hirao, ceremony with a boat, another important ritual involving dance. The boat is a symbol of life, god and journey through life. In some places in Lai Kharaoba, the tangrio dance of the Tengao is included. He requires performers intense training. Since dancers generally require excellent body control, balance, strength and concentration, the tengao is considered the highest form of dance mastery among experienced performers. Their reputation very often depends on how they took possession of the tengao.

Sankirtan is an ancient tradition of music and dance, the repository of rasa bhava, classical ragas and tols. Thematically, it relies on the tradition of Krishna, although its prototype, araibapala sankirtan, was dedicated to Rama. During the reign of Bhagya Chandra, the number of songs to the glory of Krishna increased dramatically, this period is considered to be a revival of the sankirtan tradition. Nata sankirtan literally means ”singing and dancing for the glory of Hari”. His performance is considered the highest form of worship. People approaching the place of sankirtan first bow to him and then to the audience. Sankirtan is performed even during the marriage ceremony, as by tradition it replaces the sacrificial fire common in other parts of India. What kind of sankirtan is performed depends on the ceremony and occasion.

In sankirtana, any of the 64 races can be used, which, after all, are only variations on the Shringara (love) race. The legend of Krishna and Radha is often played out, and each of its execution must include the rajamel, or divine union of Krishna and Radha. It is a symbol of the union of purusha and prakrit (male and female energy) and the creation of the world. During rajamela, the plates that the dancers hold in their hands are never completely separated from each other.

Raas-lila ‒ theatrical performance dedicated to the exploits of Krishna. There are five types of Raas ‒ Maharaas, Vasantraas, Kunjaraas, Nityaraas and Divaraas. Some of them can be performed only at certain times of the year, others at any time.

Before every Raas-lila there is sankirtan. Actors greet the ceremonies master and, having received his permission, begin the performance. Ceremoniester personifies Radha's girlfriend, who conducted the first lila in Vrindavan. Drummers traditionally take off their shirts, bow to the deity, and then to all those present: elders, teachers, everything else. Singers and other musicians do the same. Drummers begin to build a raga, then singers and a musician playing on the sink join them. The singers sing about Vrindavan, the place and time of the action, the circumstances that are recreated in the performance. When they begin to describe Krishna, the actor playing this role begins the abhisaar, or his journey to meet the beloved (the child usually plays Krishna, and his role begins shortly before 9 pm). He goes to the middle of the site, dances and moves to the temple above the north gate. All Raas must end before the first ray of sunshine.

All parents want their children to participate in the Raas and, preferably, play the role of Krishna or Radha. Parents are willing to bear the cost. The main part of the expenses are borne by the parents of Krishna, then Radha, Paurnimi, Candravali, then the four girls who are near Radha, and finally the parents of the rest of the gopis, who may pay only for their children's costumes. These monetary contributions are spent on decorations and decorations of the mandap (dance grounds), payment for professional dancers and musicians, as well as the gurus and his students, who for several months prepared children for their roles. Teaching young children is a nursing task. A teacher, who deals with, for example, a boy chosen for the role of Krishna, should teach him such difficult songs and dances as abhisaar, hrishnattan, a duet with Radha, the ability to talk with gopis. He has to prepare it for the bhangi paren with the participation of other dancers and singers. The main guru provides general guidance: he works with children, moving from one class to another, because everyone needs them. Thus, children of different ages are taught to play their respective roles, and those who have this inclination for this continue to improve their role throughout their lives. Over time, they become professional dancers.

The day before the start of the Raas, the organizers gather participants for gopibkhojan. During this ceremony, teachers receive clothes, money, food, and khir (a sweet dish). This is a touching meeting of all those who worked together to achieve a common goal for almost six months. The guru may have been very strict with the children during his studies, and sometimes he even beat the boy, who plays the role of Krishna. But now the venerable guru is an example of faith and humility, he bows low before the child Krishna and says: “You have taken the form of God, whom I worship. Forgive me for hurting you. ” For all participants, the day of Raas is a special day. Children are thoroughly bathed and dressed for the evening program. They are treated like little gods and goddesses.

Manipuri style is close to the general spirit of East Asian dances. Some types of Manipuri are performed very energetically, including the use of acrobatic techniques; for other species, the typical modest dignity and graceful swaying movements, as in folk dances. The Indian thinker and poet of the 20th century, R. Tagor, chose the Manipuri style for dancing at the university he created in Shantiniketon (near Calcutta). Tagore's activities greatly influenced the revival of the tradition of classical Indian dance. Introducing the art of dance, the Indian teacher (guru) simultaneously teaches the philosophy of life.

As in tillan, the musical accompaniment has its own special harmony and rhythm, and the circular movements of the performers are striking in their refinement. Manipuri dance consists of two main parts: chali and bhangi. Nritya consists of breeding, where elements of pure and dramatic dance are combined. Sutradhara singers - they sing very high voices with great feeling. The manipuri dance is accompanied by an orchestra: flutes, single-string foam, drum-pun and cymbals. In the pictorial dance, the plots from Jayadeva’s “Gitagovinda” and Vidyapati’s poetry are used.

The dance has several varieties and, like ”Kathak”, has fast and graceful elements, performed by men, embodying a courageous beginning and women who bring beauty and grace to the dance. The dance contains elements of folk dancing and is usually performed in moonlight. To master the technique of this dance, the most intense training is needed.

As for the technique, no Indian dance style achieves such lyrical grace and smoothness as the Manipuri: there are no body breaks; hands never rise above your head. The head, arms and legs move harmoniously, while the body bends, describing the figure eight. Indeed, the bends characterize this dance style; a dancer can dance for hours without a single sudden movement.

Another feature of this style is that often men and women dance together. But the male dance is marked by vigor and a sense of the dark force of the jungle and the mountains, where life is fraught with danger. And in contrast to the scene there are girls with smooth movements and serene faces.

It should be noted that the dancer Manipuri must maintain a unique ease of movement and strict restraint, no matter how difficult the dance and whatever physical effort it may require. This is perhaps the key to understanding the style. Manipuri is a series of vivid but unrelated pictures. He is lyrical, but inferior to other dances in contrasts of tempo, rhythm of movements. The dancer, like a shooting star in the sky, moves around the stage, conveying a cascade of human emotions; by an unexpected leap, he rises up to fall again and ascend again. No sharp gestures. One movement passes into another, creating a feeling of infinity. A gentle change of shapes leads to a smooth and continuous body movement, which is so characteristic of this style of dance. In Manipuri, the difference between tandava and Lasya is very noticeable.

In the performance of women, the dances of this style are exclusively lyrical, gentle, soft. The movements of the dancer, spindles similar and circular, are remarkable for their amazing grace, refinement and smoothness; posture with compressed knees resembles the figure eight; dreamy-lyrical facial expression. These dances are distinguished by lyricism, grace of the basic movements and easy walk of performers. The position of the body and the position of the dancer resemble picturesque groups in Indian frescoes. Purely dance numbers are performed on a certain stew, the dancers, as it were, build in space an elegant interweaving of lines. The movements of the dancers are smooth, the eyes are usually lowered down.

In Manipuri there are certain compositions that are traditionally passed down from generation to generation. They are called parens and contain almost all possible movements and style figures. They are considered immutable. Parens are found in that part of the dance called jagoi (in Raas-lila). In addition to dancing in calm manner, the Manipuri style includes full of energy male numbers: called cholom ‒ beating the rhythm on a drum hanging from the neck, the dancer jumps and spins. Here it is necessary to highlight the pung-chol dance performed by men with drums in their hands, and the kartal-chol dance performed by men or women to the accompaniment of cymbals. All cholom dances are part of the Sankirtan tradition, in which singing and dancing are aimed at unity with God.

Making fast circular movements, acrobatic jumps, they do not stop playing the drums and arouse the admiration of the audience for their virtuosity. This type of dance is close to karatal-cholom, where performers dance, clapping their hands, and mandilanartan, in which dancers, without interrupting movements, play cymbals. Both dances are performed during the holidays and on the occasion of special celebrations. Although, at first glance, the movements of male dancers do not require any special efforts, they contain reserves of enormous physical strength hidden behind external exposure. Even when men perform fast dances with swords and spears that require maximum energy, the power of a dancer can only be felt through very stylized and restrained movements.

There is one more branch of Manipuri ‒ lay-haroba, a festival in which dances are built around the theme of the creation of the universe. On the last day of the festival, dances recreating the history of the beggar and the princess, which personify the ideal lovers in the mythology of the inhabitants of the Manipur valley, are performed.

Dance performers are dressed in unique and very colorful costumes. The art of classical dance, which has reached perfection in modern India, belongs to a purely national phenomenon. Training a dancer or a dancer lasts from 10 to 13 years with everyday grueling work.

Externally, the Manipuri is not an effective style. All figures constitute a single whole, passing one into another, the harmony of body movements conveys the spirit of dance. Only maibi dances are a little different from others, as there are more swinging movements and jumps in them.

Manipuri is never aggressive, it is gentle and restrained. Exaggerated use of mimicry contradicts his norms. All movements, both horizontal and vertical, are circular and go from one to another, making spiral combinations. Hands and arms should be amazingly flexible. There is no completeness in any movement, mood or thought. The movements of the bodies are not fixed, they are transmitted by a subtle hint. It requires stress and training in order to give Manipuri its apparent ease. Every movement hides a lot of effort. That is why the casual viewer may not understand this dance.

The whole range of dance is divided into jagoi, cholom and thangta. Djagoi are performed by dancers of both sexes, as, for example, in Raas-lila and Lai Kharaoba. Cholomas are performed with drums and cymbals. They can be energetic and extremely gentle.

For the success of the ceremony is extremely important specialization of each performer in any particular aspect of it. The dancer, singer, drummer, performer, playing the cymbals ‒ each has its own specific role and each of them needs serious preparation.

The connection between the movements of the dancer's legs and the tal, or rhythmic cycle, is extremely important. There is no need to beat the rhythm with your foot. Often the rhythm is only scheduled. At the same time, the main rhythmic points are strongly highlighted. The dancers on the ankles do not have bells, because their leap may end at a time when no sound should be heard. Rhythmic points can be marked by the movement of the foot, ankle, knee, hip, or even a jump. Dancers may find the stamping of a foot at a rhythmic point too elementary.

In Nata Sankirtan Manipuri, almost 100 tals are known. Of these, only 60 are widely used. These are not just rhythmic cycles, but also the main musical accompaniment, an important technical element of the Manipuri - beating complex rhythmic patterns on various drums, cymbals, even just palms, male singers playing the cymbals, performing knee beaters . They lean forward slightly, without bending the spine or spreading the legs. This is an important element of masculine style. The dancer maintains this position even when performing complex movements, when he raises his leg, makes turns and jumps.

The manner of singing and voice culture of Manipuri differ from other styles. The singer's voice is usually high and very clear. The Manupuri singers never needed microphones, they had loud enough voices to be heard by 3,000 people.

There are four types of percussion instruments: pung (drum), dholak and dhol (also types of drums) and khanjuri (small single-membrane drum). An important role in the rhythmic accompaniment is played by clapping hands. Different dances, or cholomas, require different techniques of performance.

Nowadays, Manipuri are performed by individual dancers and small groups of dancers outside the state in which this style originated. He turned into an art form with professional performers who are ready to perform in their own country and in front of foreign audiences. Although the people of Manipur are jealous of their traditions and heritage, they were able to satisfy the increased interest in this style, playing passages from ancient ceremonial dances and various representations. Famous gurus have developed a choreography of new compositions, which preserve the traditional technique of dance.

Manipuri is a living tradition, the dance style is in close connection with everyday life. Due to the fact that, until recent years, Manipur, surrounded by mountains, was relatively inaccessible, its culture did not meet with complete understanding. In fact, even in the early stage of its development, the art of Manipur reached a high level of complexity, each historical period made a significant contribution to the development of the arts. Like the literature of Manipur, the traditions of his dance meet the high standards of classical and grace [5, 10, 19, 23, 25].

3.5.2. Suit

Children participating in sankirtan wear pink clothes with narrow black stripes on the edges and white scarves. Men wear white dhoti and two types of turbans. On drummers ‒ small koyetmachi turbans, made of extremely thin muslin. They are thoroughly washed and starched. On singers - extremely complex turban koietchuby. Tying of these large turbans, which in itself is a complicated art, is done by respected professionals. The sankirtan performers must be immaculately neat. They put sacred threads and beads on their bare breasts. In muslin, like the one from which the turbans are made, the drums are also wrapped, since they are believed to be living beings and need clothing.

Costume for dancers, known as “kumil” - dress, decorated with mirrors.

The costumes are unusually colorful, the skirts are embroidered with mirrors, the upper part of the clothes is decorated with ornaments; on the faces of translucent veils. This is a typical costume of manipuri-ras, a dance based on the story of God Krishna and his beloved Radha with her girlfriends, the gopi shepherd. Men wear white dhoti and two types of turbans. In the costume of Krishna an indispensable attribute is the peacock feather in his hair.

In Manipuri, simple decorations are used, but they create a fantastic atmosphere. The round dance floor does not allow you to use a backdrop or large decorations that would block the action from the audience, at least on one side. However, the use of the principles of perspective and the technique of dance allow the public to convey a sense of depth, distance and size.

On the modern stage, the classic types of Indian dance are performed clearly and cleanly; and although the long numbers are somewhat reduced for the sake of time and modern tastes, the spirit and character of the dance remain unchanged, which does not exclude some experiments of experimentation and innovative rethinking in the field of form. To truly appreciate Indian dances, it is necessary to watch them again and again, as we re-read our favorite poems again and again, each time revealing a different, deeper meaning [12, 23, 25].

Chapter 4. The Health Effect of Indian Classical Dance

Movement is life. Keeping fit is essential: physical education, aerobics, shaping, jogging in the morning, swimming. For more than two thousand years in India is a widespread method of maintaining physical fitness through dance. Occupations by Indian classical dance have a complex effect on the body.

Dance is not just a kind of movement. This is a way of life: diet, mindset, reading circle, atmosphere of art, inspiring performer. According to the thousand-year Indian tradition, the devadas dancer was the wife of God on earth. She had to look good. There is a whole list of qualities that a dancer should have (the treatise Abhinaya Darpana by Nandikeshwara, 12th century AD). An important quality was endurance. The dancer should dance so that the viewer does not feel that she is tired. This rule remains the criterion for assessing the dancer's skill to this day: where the work is visible, there is no art. Movement should be clear, but not hard, jump - easy, the game of eyes, eyebrows, facial expressions - elegant, devoid of exaggeration. Contemplating the dance performance, the viewer should experience the aesthetic pleasure of the “race”. The program of Kuchipudi style performances can include from 5 to 10 dance compositions. The whole program lasts about 2 hours. During this time, the performer does not have to show the slightest fatigue with his appearance. This is professionalism. And in order to achieve this skill, we need regular classes. For example, the opening dance of Purvarangam lasts only 8 minutes. But during this time, the performer performs more than 200 different dance moves. The graceful game of eyes and eyebrows gives way to an incredible cascade of virtuoso, verified movements.

Many are struck by the femininity and majesty of the posture of Indian dancers. It is achieved at the cost of hard work and gradually becomes a habit. All movements are performed in the Plié posture (a rather low landing with extended knees, with an ideal Plié, the space between the legs resembles a square set at one of the corners) [3,5].

The dance helps to get rid of some physical defects (flat-footedness, the initial stages of scoliosis) in some cases it can compensate for heart defects and correct a small lameness. Classes Indian classical dance - this is a great exercise for the eyes, eyebrows, all facial muscles. With regular exercises with a special set of exercises for the eyes as part of dance classes, an improvement in vision is possible.

Almost all the muscles of the performer’s body take part in the dance: all the muscle groups of the legs. Strong leg muscles are better than compression hosiery that supports veins, preventing varicose veins. In Plié “aramandi”, the inner surface of the thigh that is problematic for women also trains; strengthens the muscles of the back, shoulders, neck. Waistline decreases, chest volume increases. The work of small muscles of the fingers, hands stimulates the cerebellum ‒ the brain, responsible for motor functions. Indian classical dance is famous for its bright acting. The face of the dancer becomes a mirror in which many nuances of emotions are displayed. In order to display these emotions on the face, not only the senses are connected, but also the smallest muscles of the eyes, face, neck. Indian classical dance develops a sense of rhythm, coordination of movements and perfectly trains the vestibular apparatus.

The most appropriate natural female motor skills are smooth, light dancing exercises, exercises with simultaneous and sequential activation of a large number of joints (holistic movements).

In the Indian classical dance, as in the yoga system, a lot of attention is paid to the relaxation of the oculomotor muscles. But only in Indian classical dance exercises for the muscles of the eyes are accompanied by semantic load and emotional coloring, which in turn is more adequate when practicing with the female contingent, and also meets the individual personality characteristics. Systematic performance exercises of visual gymnastics helps to relax the muscles of the eye and all tissues surrounding the eye; exercise the muscles that control the eyes; blood circulation is activated in this area; improves the relationship between the nerves of the eye and the central nervous system. Complex exercises in the prevention of visual load are performed in all parts of the lesson.

Virtually every person has one more shoulder than the other because of asymmetric development and the use of one arm. In terms of modern technologies, we use less wide movements and more limited short movements (we press buttons, make phone calls, work on a computer). All this causes shoulder strain, as a result of which the arms are not fully extended or relaxed. When practicing Indian classical dance, the position of the hands in the main stand, used in all styles, contributes to the improvement of blood circulation, greater fitness of the muscles of the shoulder girdle, prevention of stooping, and scoliosis. The basic posture also improves the functioning of the muscles of inhalation and exhalation, due to the physiological posture and proper rotation of the arms and shoulders [10, 25, 30].

In European dance and in sport, when exercising flexibility, exercises with tension in the back muscles are used. In Indian classical dance, all movements affecting the development of flexibility are performed without straining the back muscles (based on the basic posture). Flexibility ‒ one of the main motor qualities of a person is associated with the elasticity of muscles, ligaments, mobility of joints. With age, flexibility is lost, which is more associated with aging processes. Regular exercise will help not only to maintain flexibility, but to a certain extent even develop it at any age. Proper use of exercises has a beneficial effect on the body: a person learns to control his body, strengthens muscles, improves posture, physical and mental condition.

To train the vestibular system and improve coordination of movements, rhythm-plastic movements, choreography, exercises in balance, changes in the speed of rectilinear movement, changes in pace and direction of movement, various ways of movement, changing body position relative to the center of gravity, reducing and elevating the bearing area, exercise on an unstable support, with eyes closed.

Emotional tone increases when performing physical exercises to music, performing exercises on the accuracy of the task. Exercises aimed at developing coordination abilities are effective as long as they are not performed automatically. In the case of learning the exercises of Indian classical dance styles, there is no decrease in the effectiveness of coordination abilities, because the conditions for their implementation and the arsenal of motor actions are almost inexhaustible. Simple movements performed at a different pace and rhythm, in various combinations form new coordination abilities. But the determining factor in the development of new coordination is the comprehension of movements in the learning process, characteristic of Indian classical dance. The breath setting, ideomotor representation, concentration of attention on the image and the internal content of the movement accelerate the formation of motor coordination. They develop an individual ability to express themselves through movement.

For the prevention of flatfoot corrective exercises are performed to strengthen the arch of the foot and the muscles of the leg (lifting half-toes). Pose with rise to the half finger contributes to the training of the muscles of the arch of the foot and turns the big toes in the direction towards each other.

Dancing develops the respiratory system of the human body ‒ classes help get rid of regular colds, bronchitis and even facilitate the course of the disease in people suffering from asthmatic attacks. It is known that dancing prolongs life, contributes to maintaining the overall tone and allows you to keep a person working and cheerful until the last days of life.

Renowned Indian doctor and art therapy specialist Satyanarayana argues that the dance has not only a psychotherapeutic effect, but also helps people with hypertension and various forms of arthritis. Dance movements help reduce pressure and have a beneficial effect on the nervous processes in the body (stress relief). Chronic forms of hypertension are treated with special antihypertensive drugs, but you can reduce the risk of developing the disease in its early stages with the help of dances.

To combat obesity, Sathyanarayana recommends combining several Indian dance styles. In his opinion, the complex of exercises developed by him accelerates metabolic processes and promotes natural weight loss.

Sathyanarayana warns that any set of dance movements should be developed together with the doctor individually for each person. Especially, if dancing is not for prevention, but for the treatment of existing serious diseases. The technique of dance therapy was approved by the Ministry of Health and the Society of Obstetrics and Gynecology of India.

Dance combines the practice of developing a whole variety of physical qualities: strength, flexibility, agility, smoothness, coordination of movements, which are usually developed with the help of special physical exercises. It saves time and brings real pleasure. The individuality of the dance and the effectiveness of teaching dance is made up of the individual capabilities of the body and soul, but for the development of these possibilities, methods, trainings, special dance lessons are used, based precisely on the similarity of physiology and psyche.

Each type of art exists due to the information that one person wants to transfer to another. Each of the artists conveys information by the means he owns: the singer - by his voice, the painter - by colors, the composer - by melody and rhythm, the writer - by speech, the actor and dancer are very similar, the only difference is that the actor uses his body and voice, and the dancer - body and music. Thus art, including dance, is a means of communication, a language [3, 7, 23].

Chapter 5. Hasta. Mudra.

In Indian classical dance, the position of the hands is hasta, mudra, is a sign language, the cultural heritage of India, from distant Vedic times, which have reached us unchanged, thanks to the treatise Actor's Expressiveness (Abhinaya Darpana). The beauty of the movements of Indian classical dance is unforgettable, mudra and hasta reinforces the impression created by the dancer [25].

Just as sound has a transcendental aspect, so the position of the body in space can communicate or convey finite truths. Therefore, the mudras, which for the most part represent the positions of the hands (hasta mudra), turn out to be both an expression and a conductor of spiritual states [11].

The origin of the hand positions used in rituals is unclear. Probably, they date back to the Vedic times, when the sacrificial rites consisted of carefully verified treatment with ritual utensils. The latest source of inspiration was the Indian dance, which has a huge arsenal of wisdom, although the possibility that the tantric mudras themselves enriched the Indian dance themselves cannot be ruled out. Natya-Shastra (Dance Guide), created around 200 AD, but attributed to the ancient sage Bharata, mentions 37 hand positions, and another 36 special ways of glimpsing, lowering the eyes or raising the eyebrows [25].

In the dance should be distinguished concepts of hasta and mudra. Although both are hand gestures, we will call them hasta when we talk about the technical aspect of the dance, and are wise when it is necessary to highlight a gesture in the dance that has a certain meaning.

There are three types of Hast:

1. Asamyuta Hastas - gestures of one hand, bearing a certain semantic load.
2. Samyuta Hastas - gestures with two hands, also having a certain meaning.
3. Nritta Hastas - decorative gestures that do not have a specific meaning are pure dance (technique).

Among the texts on the theory of dance are two of the most competent sources ‒ Natya-Shastra and Abhinaya Darpana. There are some differences in them either in the number of hasts or in the number of their values.

So Natya-Shastra indicates the following number of hastas: Asamyuta Hastas - 24, Samyuta Hastas - 13 and Nritta Hastas - 27. Abhinaya Darpana notes 28, 23 and 13, respectively.

Nritta Hasta, according to the Natya-Shastra, is of independent origin, and in Abhinaya Darpana they come from Asamyt and Samyut hast.

Here are some of the differences in the use of Hast, for example, between the styles of Kuchipudi and Bharata-Natyam, just these styles are based on different sources.

The same applies to Viniogas - the values of Hast. So, for example, in the Natya-Shastra for the Hasta Patak indicate about 35 different values, and in the Abhinaya Darpana there are more than 40 of them.

With the help of Hast in classical dance, almost everything can be expressed, but their use should not be isolated from the actions of the body and the meaning must necessarily be supported by facial expressions and eyes [9, 10, 11].

Life, health and illness, according to the Indian science of healing ”Ayurveda”, which is closely related to yoga and its feminine aspect ‒ Indian classical dance, is determined by the threefold effect on the spirit, soul and body. Disease means cacophony, discord. Health appears as a state of harmony. According to the compilers of Ayurveda, the practice of wise and haste contributes to the even distribution of energy throughout the human body without stagnation and the restoration of harmonious balance between all systems of the body. According to some experts [9,11,16], many diseases and painful states are accompanied by toxic poisoning of the body, as a result of which harmful crystalline deposits are formed on the nerve endings, preventing the grounding of electrical impulses. Thus, the flow of electromagnetic radiation in our body is disturbed. Diseases, stresses ‒ a consequence of a violation of the electromagnetic field. By performing appropriate wise and haste, we kind of “shunt” the energy channels, which gradually release the body from toxins and contribute to the prevention of diseases. The change on an emotional level due to the performance of wise and haste in Indian classical dance to the appropriate music with the use of costume, jewelry, make-up of the corresponding emotional attitude affects physical condition, and subsequently contributes to full recovery. Hastas and mudras can be used as tools for improving fine hand motor skills. Subtle differentiation of muscular efforts when performing finger exercises makes special demands on the analytical and synthetic activity of the cerebral cortex and requires an increased concentration of attention.


We would like to finish the chapter with the words of the scientist ‒ indologist S.F. Oldenburg: “... now, when we are really entering the period of the global raising of all questions concerning humanity, such cultures as Indian cannot and should not be forgotten, that both its past and present are for us a living past and a living present, which is true The world’s questioning of the East, with its culture of many millennia, should be brought to common work with the West, so that the true human culture of the world could grow from the confluence of the culture of the East and the civilization of the West” [20].

All information about Indian classical dance was used during the pedagogical experiment with female students of higher educational institutions as part of a physical education lesson. The goal of our experiment was to find out whether students are able to master the movements of Indian classical dance as an unconventional means of physical education and with their help expand their movement pattern.

The results of the experiment showed that Indian classical dance can be used as a means of physical education, a type of physical recreation and motor rehabilitation, as well as a means of promoting health. The factors determining the interest in Indian classical dance are the rich content of this cultural phenomenon, its close connection with cultural traditions and spiritual experience, exoticism and interest of girls and young women in the values of Eastern culture. The technique of the elements of Indian classical dance is subjected to a complete analysis and description as a physical exercise. The load on the human body, exerted in the process of using elements of Indian classical dance, is subject to strict regulation on the basis of the rates recommended by the ancient Indian Treatise on dance, therefore elements of dance can be used in fitness clubs and other recreational facilities.


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1. Abhnava - preparation for the dance.

2. Abhinaya - the art of transmitting emotional states and psychological nuances, as well as poems and the entire arsenal of gestures and symbolic body poses. Usually conveys the meaning of a song or story. It is expressed through 4 elements: body movement, gestures, voice, speech, costume, jewelry, make-up, the image of emotions, moods, feelings.

3. Abhinay Darpana (sk.) - Treatise "The Mirror of actor's expressiveness."

4. Adavu - a phrase, a unit of dance, a short and elegant composition, a specific stop following the prescribed combination of steps and movements, the technical basis of the style.

5. Angahara - a chain of movements consisting of 6-9 karan.

6. Angika - plastic

7. Ardhamandali (aramandi) - the main body posture (upper torso is straight, legs bent in a semi-squat, legs are turned outwards, the position of the feet is like a half-open fan).

8. Asamyuta hasta - the position of the fingers of one hand.

9. Attam - means everything that is connected with the movement. Dancing and the most complex movements of the performer are attacks, sports games are attacks, actors play are attacks, gestures, children's games, splashing in water are attacks.

10. Bhava - feeling.

11. Varnam - the longest in time and difficult to perform part of the dance. It is performed for up to 3 hours.

12. Guru is a teacher.

13. Jatis - a combination of adavu.

14. Karana - participation in the movement of two legs form canonical movements (or positions) in which hands participate. There are 108 such poses movements. Each karana consists of three elements: the initial position, the movement itself and hand gestures. In karana, there are 6 starting positions, 32 types of movement and 27 hand gestures.

15. Lasya - female style of dance performance.

16. Mandala - is a movement without the participation of hands.

17. Mukhaj - the use of facial muscles to express emotions.

18. Natya is a dance drama (one-man show), through dance, pantomime, gestures, facial expressions conveying an emotional mood and developing a specific theme.

19. Natya-Shastra (Sk.) - Treatise on dance.

20. Netra - the use of eye movements.

21. Nritta - dance technique. The choreographic composition does not contain any specific meaning.

22. Nritta hasta is a hand gesture used for a decorative effect without conveying meaning.

23. Nritya - improvisation, dance - a story that includes the art of the actor (Abhinaya), is symbolic.

24. Pindi - a sequence of phrases (angahar), each letter (karana) consists of a series of poses.

25. Race - mood.

26. Rechaka - technical reception - lifting up, turning in place, as well as rotation by different parts of the body. There are 4 types of river: for the neck, for the hands, for the waist, for the legs.

27. Samyut - position of the fingers with two hands in combination.

28. Sangit - musical accompaniment.

29. Sattvik - Mimicry.

30. Tandava - male style of dance performance.

31. Cymbals - a musical instrument in the form of copper plates.

32. Chari - movement of one leg, including the knee and thigh.

81 of 81 pages


Indian Classical Dance as a Phenomenon of World Culture
A Tutorial on its History, its Techniques, and its Health Effects
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indian, health, techniques, history, tutorial, culture, world, phenomenon, dance, classical, effects
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Olga Pavlova (Author)Ekaterina Rokhkina (Author), 2019, Indian Classical Dance as a Phenomenon of World Culture, Munich, GRIN Verlag,


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