Nrityalaya Dance Academy
The Art
All the forms of dance in India are broadly based on "Natya Shastra" and  "Abhinaya Darpanam".

Natya Shastra: Is the oldest surviving text on stage craft in the world. It is believed to  have been written between 200 BC and 200 AD by Sage
Bharatmuni. The Natya Shastra is incredibly wide in its scope. It covers the
"Stage Design", "music", "dance"and  "make up"  virtually every aspect
of stage craft. No book of the ancient times in the world contains such an exhaustive study of dramaturgy as
Natya Shastra.

Abhinaya Darpanam:
In 3rd century AD Nandikeswara wrote the Abhinaya Darpanam.  It is religiously  followed by the performers of Bharatanatyam. It
gives the usage of  
Pada Bhedas (feet positions), Hasta Bhedas (hand positions), Cari (gaits), Gatis(Stepping) etc.

Nrtta, Nrithya and Natya
for the basis of Abhinaya or Dance.

Nritta: Means pure and simple dance. This involves the movement of body and limbs for decorative purposes.

Nrithya: Lays emphasis on expressions to convey the meaning of the rendering. Nrithya involves facial expressions, gestures and symbolic poses.

Natya:  Involves the use of spoken word, apart from Nritta and Nrithya.


Nrityalaya sustains and develops the traditional art forms of India through the teaching and performance of Bharatanatyam and Kuchipudi.  These styles
of dances blend the dramatic beauty of space with energy and grace.  Both styles use a story telling form used to illuminate a sacred or mythical text that
usually is sung.  The dancer’s feet encircled with bells, act as a rhythm instrument, beating out intricate patterns, while her face, hands and arms express
the story’s emotions.

Bharatanatyam:  This 2000–year-old dance form is poetry in motion.  The dance is full of unfettered rhythmic movements and expressions, which is
devotional in spirit, highly stylized and sophisticated in its technique.  The musical component of Bharatanatyam uses Sanskrit, Telugu, and Kannada,
besides Tamil.  Symmetrical lines of the body, exuberant leaps and bends contrasting with subtle neck and eye movements, and crisp, intricate footwork
are the hallmarks of Bharatanatyam.

Kuchipudi is Andhra’s outstanding contribution to the Indian Culture. Kuchipudi is a combination of dance, gestures, speech, and song. Kuchipudi
dancer has to be well versed in dancing, acting, and music.  The great 17th century Scholar, and Poet Siddhendra Yogi gave this art form a more
definite form and purity.  In the olden days, Kuchipudi was performed only by male artists, who also played the female roles.  The art was passed from
one generation to the next.

As is the case in many different cultures, dance is one of the most basic of arts in India.  Indian culture is rich in art forms, not the least important of
which are music and dance. There are many kinds of dance, but all tell stories. Village dances often tell folk tales, while temple dance usually depicts
religious scenes from the classical epic poems. Whether the product of an eastern or western culture, these pervasive images are found throughout
history of visual and performing arts.