#Natyamheals buzz on social media

Social media has been aflutter over the past month, with several classical dancers posting photos of their noteworthy performances and moments on stage with the hashtag #natyamheals.
#Natyamheals buzz on social media
Shruthipriya (right)


The online challenge, started by the dancers of a Singapore-based TV show, Thilaanaa, aimed at showcasing memorable and empowering moments by posting on social media the moments/events that left a mark on the performer’s transition, for ten days.

For Singapore-based Sathvikaa Shankar, it was a moment to recall the role dance played in her life. “While performing, it is very easy to forget your troubles of the day. Dance is a welcome break in everyday life, and it acts as a stressbuster for me. Following the birth of my child, I have been asked not to practice, and so the challenge means all the more to me now,” said Shankar.

But it is not all so serious, said 26-year-old Sarveshan Kumar, who said that he took part in the challenge on a whim. “I had free time, so I decided to post. With Instagram proving to be an effective tool, it’s nice to look back on the performances I’ve done, at a time when things were simpler. It helps me refocus on my future now,” he said.

For 24-year-old Shruthipriya, the challenge is an opportunity to relive her most favoured aspect of natyam – bhava, or the emotions experienced by the performer.

“The songs we perform are a composer’s interpretation of a character. I really want to do justice to the character, but I am performing the composer’s version of the character. Thus, it is important that I try to convey what the composer said accurately,” she said. However, this emotion is only relived by her, not the people on social media, unlike during a performance, where the audience can experience the emotions as well.

It is also a chance to remember the hard work behind their performances, said Shankar. However, Kumar explained that the pictures are not enough to describe what goes backstage and into a performance, as many performers are hesitant to share this with the public.

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