2019-07-06 Kathak Rangmanch Visharad - Midwesternal Photography

Tarana Kathak Dance School

Kathak Rangmanch Visharad

Saturday, July 6th, 2019

Harper College Performing Arts Center

Palatine, IL


A Traditional Indian Art Form

Kathak is an ancient Indian Classical Dance form hailing from Northern India. Through elegant expressions, mudras (hand gestures), and intense footwork, a Kathak dancer conveys a “Katha” (story) in each piece.

Rangmanch Visharad

Dance Graduation

Kathak students undergo rigorous training for eight years, perfecting the dance form. Rangmanch Pravesh marks the beginning of professional career as a “Kathak-kaar” (professional Kathak artist).

A Rangmanch Visharad is a milestone in the life of a dancer. It demands complete control and command over the intricacies and nuances of kathak. It is a culmination of many years of discipline, perseverance, and devotion, where the dancer presents her art before a live audience.


Hair & Makeup

Photo Gallery

Studio Sessions


Ghungroo Ceremony

The program starts with the ceremony of each dancer receiving ghungroos from their Guru, Sheetal Dhanani. The dancer then seeks blessings from her Guru and Nataraja, the God of dance.

Ganesh Vandana

This piece is an invocatory prayer to seek the blessing from the presiding deity, Lord Ganesha, the remover of all obstacles. He is honored at the start of Hindu rites and ceremonies. The dancers will praise the Lord and welcome the audience.

Jaipur Gharana

Jaipur Gharana (school) originated from the ancient courts of Rajput rulers of Rajasthan. This style of dance presents the technical aspects of the dance such as intricate footwork, rapid spins, and poetic expressions. Jaipur Gharana is characterized by poems about Lord Krishna. The highlight of this dance is “sawal- jawab” (question-answer), where the dancers will ask a question and then will answer using footwork.

Solo — Priyanka Shah

Priyanka’s solo performance is a pure Sufi song in the form of Qawwali from the Lucknow Gharana. This song is sung by Ahmed and Mohd. Hussain, and composed by Javed Akhtar. The song translates to “I have come to your door.” This performance will show the devotion and appreciation of God’s acceptance of his devotees for their past sins.

Solo — Siya Taparia

Siya’s solo songs are both in devotion to lord Krishna. In the first song Radha is playfully pleading “kanha” to go to sleep and stop annoying her. The beauty of the song is towards the end when he actually falls asleep listening to her melodious voice The second song is a traditional “Thumri” composed by Birju Maharaj written by Bindadin Maharaj in “Teen Taal.” It is a depiction of unconditional love between Radha and Krishna followed by traditional “todas” of “Dhrut-lay.”


A dancer’s training in Kathak starts with the simple yet versatile “bol” (beat) of Tatkar, “ta thai thai tat — aa thai thai tat.” This is the foundation for many complicated “thodas” and “thukdas.” Usually utilized as a transition between two todas, here our dancers demonstrate control through all three “layas” (speed), from “vilambit” (slow) to “dhrut” (fast), and create a beautiful, elegant, and complex composition.

Solo — Rhea and Ranya Sharma

This beautiful dance piece represents the culmination of the Kathak journey of these two sisters. It symbolizes the love between Radha and Krishna. The first part of this two song dance is based on “Vilambit Laay” and it reflects Radha’s playful rejection of Krishna’s love. The second part is in “Dhrutt Laay” based on Hindustani music, infused with Kathak thodas. It represents Radha’s acceptance of Krishna’s love and reflects her excitement and preparation as she awaits his arrival.

Solo — Ananya Sharma

Ananya’s solo, a modern approach in Kathak, is in the Sufi style, in which the character she embodies believes in God’s support. “Aayat” is a piece about a passionate independent woman, rising from the ashes, breaking stereotypes, and fighting in the war of life. Her sword represents her ability to step into the world of evil and remain independent despite hardships. In the second piece, love takes her to a place of peace and happiness. This piece has been fused by the Tarana Kathak musicians and concludes with teen taal.

Lucknow Gharana

Lucknow school of Kathak represents Mughal impression on Kathak. This dance style features beautiful movements, natural poise, and elegance. It has Persian influence characterized by intricate footwork, spectacular spins, and exquisite expressions. The dancers present a variety of speeds, Vilambit (slow), Madhya (medium), and Drutt (fast).


Tarana is a musical genre created by the illustrious 13th-century Sufi poet Amir Khusro. Tarana uses syllables like “Dere,” “Naa,” “Deem,” “Tana,” and “Pakhawaj” as a musical language tied with melody and rhythm. The dancers bring out the essence of music through complex footwork, intricate geometric shapes, and rapid turns.



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