Dr. Sunanda Nair bags four awards to end the year 2018 for her contribution to Mohiniyttam
It has been a busy year for the Texas-based Mohiniyattam exponent and disciple of Dr. Kanak Rele. In fact, the Mumbai-born Malayali performing arts exponent has wound up 2018 by receiving four back to back awards. The first award, instituted in the name of the late Manipuri exponent, Guru K Jiten Singh Award, where Dr. Sunanda Nair received standing ovation.
In fact, the showering of awards began with Nalanda’s Kanara Nartana Puraskaar in end November along with performance at Nartanotsavam. Then came the recognition at the Nrityabritti Batayan presented fourth Year Durgapur Dance and Music Festival 2018 on December 15 held at Srijani Auditorium Durgapur, West Burdwan in West Bengal, organised by Kalamandalam Swarnadeep Mahanta.
Then on December 24, 2018 Dr. Sunanda Nair received Muthirai Pathitha Vithagar Award at the Natyanjali Festival held in Karur, Tamil Nadu. On December 25, 2018 Kalashree Dr. Sunanda Nair received the BCKA Award for Kala Shrestha in Mohiniyattam held in Bangalore.
Then the humongous honour came to Dr. Sunanda Nair from Her Highness Pramoda Devi Wadhiyar of the Mysore Royal Family who conferred the award in the presence of Lalitha Das, President of BCKA; Meena Das Narayan, Vice President, BCKA; Dr. Radhakrishnan former Chairman of ISRO; Jaidev Narayan from the Committee for choosing Sunanda Nair for this Kala Shrestha Award for Mohiniyattam at an event held in Bangalore on December 25.
Scintillating performance of Mohiniyattam by Dr. Sunanda Nair at Durgapur Music and Dance Festival 2018
Dr.Sunanda Nair, Mohiniyattam exponent had mesmerised jam-packed audience consisting of 400 plus people at the Durgapur Music and Dance Festival 2018 on December 15. After enthralling the crowd with her electrifying Mohiniyattam performance, the crowd gave a standing ovation to the doyen of Mohiniyattam art form. Curated by Kalamandalam Swarnadeepa and Kaanchan Das along with Nrittyabithi Batayan, the event was inaugurated by Alokananda Roy. This year’s Festival saw some really great performers including Dr. Sunanda Nair, Alokparna Guha, Arkadev Bhattacharya, Arnab Badhyopadhyay, Sumanjit Chakraborty and others at Srijani Auditorium in Durgapur, West Bengal.
Reacting to the response, Dr. Sunanda Nair said, “Wow! What a fantabulous feeling, when 400 odd people in the audience giving standing ovation for my performance. I am completely overwhelmed by the responses and feedback and I am humbled at same time. Also I am thankful to Kalamandalam Swarnadeepa Mahanta and Kalamandalam Goutam and so many more. In fact, this is a memorable event for a long time. Also, I was able to meet some wonderful artistes and students of dance.”
While talking about Dr. Sunanda Nair and her performance, Kalamandalam Goutam said, “I met Dr. Sunanda Nair two decades back when I was a student at Kerala Kalamandalam. I could not sleep that night after seeing her performance. Last evening her performance once again proved that Dr. Sunanda Nair is the best in the world of Mohiniyattam today. Yes, she is the best in India in the Mohiniyattam art form. She had shown to the entire world what Mohiniyattam can do even.”
Stating that he was still sunk in that Chaliea Kunjana or Kubja or that Jeeva, Kalamandalam Goutam continued, “I think I will remain sunk in this for a few more days to come. Your composition of Chaliea was so different and graceful. It hold the breadth of the audience. Specially the way when Krishna doesn’t come and the Sakhi is hurt and suddenly realises that yes Krishna has come. Kubja proved the intense Abhinaya skills of yours through your Bhakti Rasa. How beautifully both the Krishnas were different. Kavalam Narayana Panikkar‘s Jeeva has always been my favourite and I have always liked it more than the Tillana to end a Mohiniyattam Recital. I remember talking with him for days at Sopana, his Thiruvanathapuram residence and when Dr. Sunanda Nair performed that yesterday, I had no words to thank you even. The pure dance elements were all so precise yet elegant.”
Klamandalam Goutam was all praise for Dr. Sunanda Nair and her inimitable performance, “Dr. Sunanda Nair is that someone who could make me cry with her performance. I was literally on my tears last evening. She had touched a millions hearts here and the people of Bengal will remember her performance forever.”
Without mincing words Kalamandalam Goutam said he wouldn’t be surprised if he sees Dr. Sunanda Nair end up receiving SNA Award any sooner. “If not now then when? My pranams to Dr. Sunanda Nair’s guruji Kanak Rele for crafting her deciple her so well.