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The Science Behind Classical Form of Dancing: 20 Amazing Facts to Know!

Indian classical dance

Classical dance is a unique form of artistic expression that is characterized by its use of specified techniques and practices derived from centuries of research and development. This type of dance is often associated with traditional forms of ballet, opera, and other theatrical performances.

It is grounded in scientific principles, with its movements and techniques designed to be in accordance with the laws of physics and the biomechanics of the human body. As a result, classical dance is a highly technical and disciplined dance form that requires dedication and rigorous training in order to master.

The movements in classical dance are precise and graceful, and the gracefulness of the art form has made it a beloved and respected form of performance art.

20 Interesting Facts about Indian Classical Dances

  1. What is Classical Dance?

    Classical dance is a form of dance that is deeply rooted in history and is heavily influenced by scientific principles and techniques. This style of dance has been around for centuries and has been passed down through generations. It is characterized by precise and intricate movements that are executed with poise and grace.

    The steps and postures of classical dance have been developed over time to adhere to the laws of physics and anatomy, providing practitioners with an effective and efficient way to learn the fundamentals of dance. In recent years, the appreciation of classical dance has grown due to the deep connection it has to its cultural roots. Despite being a timeless art form, practitioners of classical dance continue to find innovative ways to bring it to life and make it accessible for all.

  2. What are the benefits of dance?

    Indian classical dance

    The benefits of practicing dance are extensive, ranging from improved physical and mental health. Physically, dancers can expect to gain increased strength and endurance in their hands, legs and core. Regular practice of dance can also lead to improved coordination and balance, greater flexibility and suppleness in the body, and a stronger cardiovascular system.

    Mentally, dance can help to improve concentration, memory and mood. The confidence and self-expression needed to practice dance also results in a brighter spark in the eyes, a more positive attitude and a beautiful smile. Furthermore, the elegance and grace of classical dance can be further developed through consistent practice, allowing the dancer to truly come alive with the music and let their inner beauty shine.

  3. What is meant by Nātyaveda or Nātyashāsthra?

    The science which gives a detailed account of Nātya, an Indian performing art, is called Nātyaveda or Nātyashasthra. This science is an ancient form of knowledge and is believed to have been created by the sage Bharata. It is the foundation of many Indian performing arts, including Kathakali, Kuchipudi, and Kathak.

    Nātyaveda is composed of four main sections, which provide detailed guidelines and principles for the practice of Nātya. These sections are Abhinaya, Rasas, Tandava, and Natya. Abhinaya is the section which covers the techniques of expressing emotions through facial expressions, hand gestures, and body language.

  4. Who is the presiding deity of dance?

    Lord Natarāja is the presiding deity of the ancient Hindu art of dance and is often depicted performing the divine cosmic dance known as Tandava. In Hinduism, Natarāja is seen as a symbol of the natural rhythm of the universe and the cycle of creation and destruction.

    He is typically depicted holding his drum and hourglass in his hands and standing atop a demon or dwarf who represents ignorance. He is often surrounded by a ring of fire, symbolizing the universe and his power to both create and destroy. Natarāja’s cosmic dance is said to represent the perpetual cycle of life and death, as well as the dynamic energy of the universe.

  5. Which are the classical dances of our country

    Classical dances are an integral part of India’s culture, with eight different styles to choose from. Bharatanatyam, Kathakali, Mohiniyattam, Kuchipudi, Odissi, Kathak, Manipuri and Sathriya are all forms of classical dance, each with its own unique characteristics and regional influences.

    Bharatanatyam, for example, is a major traditional dance form of South India, having developed in the temples and courts of the region. Kathakali, on the other hand, is a dance-drama from Kerala, featuring performers wearing elaborate makeup and costumes, and using facial expressions and body movement to tell stories.

  6. Who is the originator of Nātyaveda?

    Lord Brahma is a revered figure in Vedic culture and is believed to be the originator of Nātyaveda, which is the science of performing arts. He is the creator of the four Vedas, the ancient scriptures that form the basis of Hinduism.

    Nātyaveda is composed of two words – Nātya meaning ‘dance’ and Veda meaning ‘knowledge’. It is believed that Lord Brahma created Nātyaveda to help his devotees express their devotion to the divine in the form of music and dance

  7. Who propagated dance on earth? Or by whom was dance propagated on earth?

    Usha, the daughter of Bānāsura, was gifted with an incredible ability to express her emotions and feelings through her body and movements. She was a masterful dancer, and using her talents, she helped to spread the joy of dance on earth and bring people together.

    Through her art, she showed the world that even the most difficult emotions can be expressed through the beauty of dance. To this day, Usha stands as an inspirational figure, showing us that with enough passion, anything can be achieved. She truly brought the gift of dance to the world and inspired countless people.

  8. Who is Usha?

    Usha, daughter of Bānāsura, is an inspirational figure for many and a reminder of the power of dance. She is credited with propagating the art of dance to the earth, bringing joy and beauty to all who experience it. Usha was a master of her craft, and her graceful movements were said to bring life and vitality to any space.

    She was a dedicated teacher and shared her talents with many, inspiring generations of dancers to come. Usha’s legacy lives on today through the many dancers who continue to be inspired by her and her art. Her passion for dance and commitment to passing on her knowledge and skill are a true testament to the power of art and its ability to bring joy and beauty

  9. From whom did Usha learn dance?

    Usha was a gifted dancer, born with an innate sense of grace and beauty. When she came of age, she decided to take her talent to the next level and set off to find a teacher. After weeks of searching, she eventually stumbled upon an ancient temple, dedicated to the Goddess Pārvathi.

    There she found an old master, who had been teaching the sacred dance of Pārvathi for generations. Usha was immediately taken with the art form and asked to be accepted as a student. The master agreed, and Usha spent the next few years learning from him. Her dedication and hard work paid off, and she quickly mastered the techniques of the legendary dance.

  10. To whom did Pārvathi teach dance?

    godess parvathi devi (durga)

    Goddess Pārvathi taught dance to Usha, daughter of Bānāsura, teaching her the importance of grace and beauty. As Usha embraced the art of dance, she felt the energy of the goddess move through her, helping her to find her inner strength and power.

    Usha soon became an expert in the art of dance, embodying the goddess with her every move. She used her newfound knowledge to bring joy and happiness to others. Usha learned that when you are in tune with the spiritual energy of the universe, anything is possible. Through dance, she found her true self and developed a deep connection with the divine.

  11. Which are the sources of Nātyaveda?

    The four Vedhās, namely: Rigveda, Yajurveda, Sāmaveda and Atharva Veda, are the sources of Nātyaveda, the ancient traditional art of Indian Dance. This ancient art of dance is highly revered and has been passed down through the generations, inspiring us all to uphold the principles of truth and beauty that it embodies.

    Nātyaveda is a spiritual practice, one that allows us to connect with the divine and to access our inner wisdom. It also serves to bring together people from all walks of life, as we express and share our joy, love, and appreciation for life and each other.

  12. Which element was taken from Rigveda?

    Pathya (vocal singing) or words are the oldest form of wisdom and knowledge that have been passed down through generations. They come from the ancient Rigveda, and are a part of our collective ancestral heritage. Pathya or words have the power to ignite our minds and hearts, inspiring us to unlock our own potential and live meaningful and fulfilling lives.

    They offer us comfort and guidance in times of difficulty and confusion, reminding us of our common humanity and the interconnectedness of all things. Pathya or words remind us of our collective power and strength, and provide us with the courage and hope to keep striving forward, even in the face of uncertainty

  13. Which element was taken from samaveda?

    The musical aspects of the Samaveda are truly inspirational! It has been said that the Samaveda is the source of the world’s oldest and most beautiful melodies. The Samaveda is believed to be the source of the world’s oldest known Indian music, and it contains melodies that have been passed down through generations.

    One of the most inspiring aspects of the Samaveda is its flexibility and range of sounds. It contains melodies that range from the simplest of tunes to complex and sophisticated harmonies. The Samaveda also contains a wealth of spiritual and philosophical wisdom that can be heard in the music.

  14. From whom did Bharatha  learn thandava?

    Bharatha, the legendary dancer and scholar, was determined to perfect the ancient art of thandava, the dance of Shiva. He searched far and wide, until he came upon an old man living in the mountains known as Thandu.

    Thandu had devoted his life to the mastery of thandava, and he agreed to take Bharatha on as his student. For many years, Bharatha studied under Thandu, learning the movements and techniques that are necessary to truly express the divine beauty of thandava. Bharatha’s hard work and dedication paid off, and he eventually became one of the most renowned thandava dancers in history.

  15. How many varieties of dances are there?

    There are two kinds of dances, namely classical and folk,which are also known as Dheshi and Margi. Both of these styles have a long and rich history, and have been enjoyed by people of all ages and cultures for centuries.

    They offer different perspectives on movement, art, and emotion, and can be used to express joy, sorrow, and even political or social messages. Classical and folk dances are both incredibly powerful tools to bring people together and can be used to showcase the beauty and diversity of cultures around the world. Whether you are looking to learn a new style of dance or just to appreciate the beauty and artistry of these forms, they are sure to bring joy and inspiration to your life.

  16. How many styles or vruthis are there in Natya?

    Natya is divided into four distinct styles: Bharathi, Sathvathi, Arabhati and Kaishiki. Each one of these styles has its own unique characteristics, allowing practitioners to express themselves in a way that is uniquely their own.

    Bharathi is the style of creating joy and happiness, often used to evoke emotion and make people smile. Sathvathi brings out inner strength and resilience, and is used to create inspiring stories. Arabhati is the style of creating a sense of awe and wonder, showing the beauty of the world. Lastly Kaishiki is used to invoke wisdom and knowledge, highlighting the cultural heritage of India.

  17. What is Nruthya?

    Combining the ancient arts of Nrutha and Abhinaya is known as Nruthya and is a beautiful form of artistic expression. Nrutha is an Indian classical dance form which is based on gestures and rhythmic elements, while Abhinaya is an expressive form of storytelling through facial expressions and hand gestures.

    When these two art forms are combined, it creates a powerful effect on audiences and can be used to convey feelings, emotions, messages and stories.

  18. What is Abhinaya?

    Abhinaya is a powerful tool for conveying emotions and sentiments. Through the use of facial expressions and body language, Abhinaya provides a unique way to communicate.

    Through subtle shifts in facial expression and small movements of the limbs, we can express joy, sadness, anger, fear, surprise and other emotions. Abhinaya is an art that allows us to effectively communicate our innermost feelings. It is a skill that anyone can learn, and when perfected, it becomes a powerful tool for conveying emotion, conveying messages, and connecting with others.

  19. Who are Tajavur borthers?

    Ponnaiah, Chinnaiah, Shivananda and Vadivelu are known as the Thanjavur Brothers or Thanjavur Quartet, renowned for their innovations in classical music. They were born in Tamil Nadu, India, and their music was a perfect blend of their Carnatic and folk music traditions.

    The brothers are considered to be pioneers in their field, paving the way for other classical musicians to explore and experiment. They were known for their passionate pursuit of perfection and their passionate dedication to their work. They have inspired many musicians to strive further and reach greater heights in their craft.

  20. Which are the musical instruments used in bharathanatyam?

    In present day bharathanatyam, a wonderful harmony of instruments can be heard. Cymbals, mridangam, violin and flute make this classical dance form come alive.

    The musical accompaniment of these instruments creates a unique ambience and conveys the emotions of the dancers to the audience. The combination of these instruments is a testament to the beauty of this ancient art form.

More about Indian Classical Dance

Information collected & compiled from various public domain sources. Visit this Govt website or this India culture site for more information.

This is not a complete list. There are many state specific classical dances like Kathak, Kathakali, Kuchupudi, Odissi, Manipuri etc.