Yesterday, Yogascapes in Japan ventured to Studio Bindu, in the east of Kyoto, to watch Kamala Klebanova perform Odissi, a classical Indian dance which originated in Odisha (East India).
The forms and costume remind me of the elegantly carved temple figures of ancient India. The movements are fluent, graceful and firm. While the upper body flows from one distinct pose to another, the bent legs point out the rhythm of the drums. Hereby a clapping sound occurs, caused by the dancer's bare feet. The face and hands tell short stories from everyday-life, as well as 2000-year-old epic stories.
According to legend, the dance derives from the gods and is sustained by the dancers who follow their tradition. The present Odissi style not only refers to centuries-old dance traditions that have evolved out of Hindu temples. It is inspired by the Sanskrit texts (which present detailed principles of theatre and dance from the 2nd to 16th century AD), which are the fundamental sources for this remarkable dance form.
From January 12th onwards, on every Monday and Friday, from 7:30 pm to 9:00 pm at Studio Bindu, Kamala offers beginner lessons in Odissi dance. If you are living in Kyoto, or just visiting, please consider joining for a fun evening of delightful dance.
For more information, check out Kamala's website: http://www.my-odissi.com