Odissi Dance

Odissi is one of the form of Indian classical dance. It is a highly stylised dance and to some extent is based on the classical Natya Shastra and the Abhinaya Darpana. Odisha, on the eastern sea coast, is the home of Odissi, one of the many forms of Indian classical dance. Sensuous and lyrical, Odissi is a dance of love and passion touching on the divine and the human, the sublime and the mundane. The Natya Shastra mentions many regional varieties, such as the south-eastern style known as the Odhra Magadha which can be identified as the earliest precursor of present day Odissi.

Odissi closely follows the tenets laid down by the Natya Shastra. Facial expressions, hand gestures and body movements are used to suggest a certain feeling, an emotion or one of the nine rasas.

The techniques of movement are built around the two basic postures of the Chowkand the Tribhanga. The chowk is a position imitating a square – a very masculine stance with the weight of the body equally balanced. The tribhanga is a very feminine stance where the body is deflected at the neck, torso and the knees.

Odissi Dance Curriculum

  • Bhumi Pranam
  • Introduction to basic dance position known as Chaukh (square position) and torso movement.
  • Chauka Steps (1-10) in different speeds
  • Bhramari – 2 types
  • Asanjukta Hasta mudra- there are 30 mudras.
  • Pada bheda: Different feet positions required for dancing. There are 10 basic padabhedas to learn at this level.
  • Drishti-Bheda: Various eye movements required for the dance.
  • Basic Bhangis or dance postures.
  • Knowledge of basic Taal (rhythm).
  • Revision of first year's curriculum
  • Introduction to Tribhangi position and torso movement.
  • Introduction to Tribhangi steps from 1 to 10 , at various speeds.
  • Bhramari- Students are required to learn 4 bharamaris at this level
  • Sanjukta Hasta mudra-there are 23 mudras under this category.
  • Padabheda: another set of feet positioning, there are 20 various feet positions to learn at this level.
  • Shirobhed, head movements
  • Griva bhed, neck movemnets
  • Getting used to basic Tribhangi position and torso movement.
  • 1 Pallavi- Odissi item
  • Padabhedas- All 36
  • Remaining Bharamaris
  • 1 Pallavi- Odissi item
  • 1 Mangalacharan/Batu- Odissi item
  • Knowledge of complicated Taal
  • Everything from previous levels
  • Introduction to Noborosh- 9 emotions
  • Choreography on Vakratunda Mahakaya-Odissi item
  • New Mangalacharan/Batu/Abhinaya/new Pallavi- Odissi item
  • Taal.

About Teacher

Reshma Das is a renowned Odissi dancer and choregrapher who hailed from Kolkata, our very own City of Joy. She started her journey of dance at a very early age with Guru Ashim Bhattacharya who is an expert of Rabindra Nritya, a very popular dance form of West Bengal. She trained in this dance form for 7 years and finished her Visharad from Pracheen Kala Kendra .

During her teenage years, mesmerized by the beauty of Odissi dance, she started her training in this art form with famous dancer and performer Ms Sutapa Talukdar. Reshma honed her skill of Odissi dancing under many famous gurus like Rajib Bhattacharya, Debamitra Sengupta and Enakshi Sinha who are the disciples of legendary Odissi dancer and recipient of Padma Shri, Padma Bhusan and Padma Vibhusan awards.