Khajuraho, the temple town of Madhya Pradesh, is known for its artistic sculpture and images. There are a number of Hindu and Jain temples belonging to ancient times. Its historical significance is remarkable and noteworthy. And it is special because of the wonderful intrinsic architecture that adorns the temples. Every year the town transforms into a jubilant mood with the Khajuraho Dance Festival. Prominent dance artists from various parts of Indian and abroad, perform at the festival. It is a mesmerizing event, spanning 7 days. The Khajuraho Dance Festival 2022 has commenced from 20th February and will extend till 26th February. It is the 48th year of the festival.
History behind the Dance Festival
The temples of Khajuraho portray the various dance forms in India. Dance has always been a significant part of Hindu mythology. The carvings of dance artists on the walls of the temples attract the eyes of the tourists visiting the temple town. Classical dance forms of India are magnificently elaborated in the artworks.
In ancient India, the temples served as the main center or platform for dance performances. Khajuraho was not an exception. Even in Hindu mythology, there are multiple references to dance forms. The famous among them being, Tandava – the cosmic dance of Lord Shiva, Raas Leela of Lord Krishna, and the various dance performances by the apsaras (residing in heaven) like Urvashi, Menaka, and Rambha.
The first Khajuraho dance festival had started in 2002 with the purpose of offering tribute to the classical dance form, and music of India,
Just like every year, the Khajuraho Dance Festival 2022 is being organized by the Kala Parishad under the Madhya Pradesh government. Renowned classical dancers from different parts of India perform at the festival. The event is to symbolize the rich cultural, tradition, and historical heritage of India. Different forms of dance like Kathak, Bharatnatyam, Odissi, Kuchipudi, Manipuri, and Kathakali are performed at the temples of Khajuraho.
The main venue of the festival is the Chitragupta and Vishwanatha Temple. The entire event is held in open-air auditoriums, magnifying the beauty of art. The melodious and rhythmic sounds of the classical instruments – tabla, mridangam, flute, ghungroo, and tanpura are music to the ears. No doubt the festival allures a massive number of music and art lovers from different parts of the world.
Hightlights of Khajuraho Dance Festival 2022
On the opening day, the festival has been initiated by dance performances of students of Late Pandit Birju Maharaj and Shanta – VP Dhananjayana and team.
On the second day, the audience will be entertained with the Odissi dance performance by Sujata Mohapatra, Bharatnatyam, and Kathak by Nirupama Rajendra, and the Kuchipudi group dance led by Jay Ramarao.
On the third day, there will be special dance events like Mohiniyattam by Neena Prasad, Bharatnatyam group dance led by Parshvnath Upadhyay, and Kathak by Tina Tambe.
On the fourth day, Kathak will be presented by Sonia Parchure, a mix of Kathakali and Bharatnatyam by Kalamandalam Sunil and Paris Lakshmi, Kathak and Udarta Netuma by Ragini Nagar and Danuka Ariyawansa.
On the fifth day, the audience will love to watch Bharatnatyam by Sandhya Purecha and team, Kathak by Shraveri Jamenis and team, and Kuchipudi group dance under the guidance of Vasant Kiran.
On the sixth day, there will be Kathak performances by Nayanika Ghosh and Group and Devika Devendra S. Manglamukhi. The audience will also enjoy the Odissi dance by Rudraksha Foundation.
On the last day, group Kathak dance will be presented by Shama Bhate and team, group Manipuri dance by Tapasya, and a mix of Bharatnatyam and Kathak by Shweta Devendra and Kshama Malviya.
Awards at the festival
The National Kalidas Award for dance and Madhya Pradesh State Rupankar Art Award will be presented to the dance artists at the Khajuraho Dance Festival 2022. A series of art exhibitions will be held showcasing the tribal cultures of India. You can even watch films on the art, culture, and traditions of ancient India.
Other activities at the festival
Besides, several sports and adventure activities have also been arranged to entertain the visitors. A five, 10, and 21-kilometer run has been arranged spanning across the different heritage sites and monuments associated with UNESCO. A number of water sports like speed boat rides, banana rides, Shikara boat rides, and river rafting will be there for the visitors. Adventure lovers can go for night jungle safaris, and boat safaris. Whereas people interested in astronomy can opt for the stargazing treks to the hill of Panna. You can also stay in glamping tents in Jinna village and soak your minds into live music.
All the events of the festival will be telecasted live on the Facebook page of the Khajuraho Dance Festival and the YouTube channel of the Culture Department. So even if you miss the chance of visiting the Khajuraho Dance Festival 2022, you can still watch it live on social media.
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