Bharatanatyam dancer Meera Krishnamurti has converted her house terrace to space where artists from various fields can practice and perform.
After showing us around the terrace on the third floor of her house, Meera says, "Our space is open to people, who have a need to share a point of view — thoughts, ideas, statements, creations, work or journeys. When I realised there was a lack of spaces for artistes to practice and perform, I decided to create one on my terrace. The intention is to provide a space for people to express themselves without the inhibition of being judged. They can utilise the space to showcase their talents."
Apart from dance, music and theatre performances, Art on the Terrace has seen poetry and book reading sessions, workshops and so on. Meera runs the place along with Ananya Ashok, Aniruddh Chitoor, Devnath Bhaskara, Revathi Jaikumar, Shereen Saifudeen and Varsha Venugopal.
"We have a Facebook page where we update about the upcoming events. Also, if an artiste or a group of people is finding it tough to find a place to practise or perform, they can contact us on Facebook and get the details. We don't have a selection or screening process. Our aim is to encourage and support artistes from all walks of life. The terrace can hold an audience of about 50-60 comfortably and the performances are open to the public and are for free," adds the dancer.
While our discussion moved to the importance of supporting budding artistes, Meera's friend Revathi joined the conversation. Both are friends from college and Revathi helps manage Art on the Terrace activities. “Apart from Facebook, we also have a WhatsApp group where we share about the events that we host. During Margazhi, we organise five or six concerts over a period of one month. It’s good to see like-minded people coming together and appreciating various forms of art,” chips in Revathi.
Meera also teaches Bharatanatyam to a few children from the neighbourhood. The team behind it does not want to run the space commercially. “We wanted it to be an informal setting with a small garden. Sometimes, there will be only five or six people as audience and there were times when we had to use the adjacent terrace belonging to our neighbour,” recalls Meera.