The classical dance forms come from the roots of the dance forms that are performed in India. In Sanskrit the Indian Classical Forms are known as Natya Shashtra. Different states in India have different classical forms. Each classical dance has its own style, elegance and messages to convey to the society. The facial expressions play a great role while performing these dance forms. The classical dancers are highly respected throughout the country for their talent and splendid performances.
There are around 8 prominent classical dance forms in India. Those are Bharatanatyam, Kuchipudi, Mohiniyattam, Kathak, Odissi, Satriya and Manipuri. All these dance forms have their own sets of expressions, costumes and dance steps. They are unique and beautiful in their own way. The music that are played for performing these dance forms are exceptionally in their own regional language and the songs always convey messages to the society. They represent ancient arts forms and depict the stories which belonged to the ancient periods or medieval period.
Out of all the classical dance forms, Bharatanatyam is the oldest form of dance which is also known as the mother of all the other styles of classical dance in India. Its origin is from Tamil Nadu and was earlier known as Sadir Attam. This dance form expresses South Indian religious themes and also spiritual views, particularly Shaivism, Shaktism and Vaishnavism.
These dance forms represent the spiritual ideas and have different standing postures. The classical dances help in liberating the soul and also provides peace of mind. These dance forms are extremely expressive in nature and dramatic too. They narrate the ancient Vedic scriptures and the other stories that have been written in the ancient period. The dance forms are usually performed in the Hindu Temples and especially during the special occasions and festivals. These prominent dance forms have been recognized as dance forms by the Sangeet Natak Academy.
Acting out these scriptures, Vedic shastras and epic stories require a lot of expressions and dance behaviour. The one who is performing the classical dance form should understand the roots of the song and should be able to understand the song or the story in depth. Without the proper understanding, he or she won’t be able to perform elegantly.
The classical dance forms represent the Hindu Mythology and makes us understand it through its depiction through dance steps and expressions. It is extremely dramatic and we should always respect all the dance forms.