Thursday, October 4, 2012

108 letters to the editor

The launch of my Bharathanatyam Guru Shri Dhananjayan's latest book "108 letters to the editor" was very grand. But he  has a naivety that believes in fantastic things that is both charming and forbidding!   When he claims he built Kalakshetra brick by brick, he means the physical. He was among the students who lent a hand to the laborers who were creating infra structure at Kalakshetra when it moved from Theosophical society to its current space. Kalakshetra was solely "built" by RukminiDevi Arundale. Shri Dhananjayan left Kalakshetra in 1968 after a disagreement with her to build Bharathakalanjali brick by brick metaphorically. I decided to learn Bharathanatyam only to become a better school teacher and not to do arrangetram or perform on the stage. When he says he encouraged me to write and guided me to write reviews and reports in an impersonal style and do critical analysis of the performances without regard to the personal relationship of the artiste he means metaphorically. We agreed to disagree in discussions after my articles were published and still remained affectionate to each other. He  says my first review published in the Indian Express was written by him which got me into trouble with the artist's parents. My first review was that of the arrangetram of Priya Mahadevan (now Murle) which was written when The Dhananjayans were away touring Russia. After I had written some 300 reviews and articles, I said I would not like to review Tulsi Badrinath's arrangetram since I was the compere. Shri Dhanajayan wrote a review and sent it to express. The sealed cover without a name was delivered by a student of his. Indian Express gave my byline thinking it was me who had written it. I had written to them that it was not written by me. I am just clearing a confusion.