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thasmai shri gurave namaha

(excerpt from Kalidasa's maaLavikAgnimitram)

{Even a dullard (dancer) will attain sharpness of intelligence by association with a wise teacher/exponent; just as the turbid water attains crystal clarity in contact with the (mud-removing) 'kataka' fruit..}

Guru Bhanumati, a renowned scholar and teacher, is the artisitic director of Nritykalamandiram. The dance troupe Bharatanjali, founded by her, features her original choreographies of ancient and contemporary compositions. Adjudged by the Indian Council for Cultural Relations (ICCR) as the "Best Bharatanatyam Dance Troupe," the troupe has to its credit over 500 shows since its inception in 1994.

Guru Bhanumati is the recipient of the senior fellowship of the Ministry of Human Resource Development for her pioneering excellence in group choreography. Her other awards include the Karnataka Kalashree conferred by the State Sangeetha Nritya Academy, in 2000 and the coveted Rajyotsava awarded by the Karnataka state government in 2001.

Her approach emphasizes the spirituality of dance. A confluence of mastery and exploration, her artistry is sublime. Going beyond technique, she immerses herself in dance, reveling in its magic. Highly respected by senior artists and young dancers, she has presented invited lecture-demonstrations and conducted wokshops in Bharatanatyam at leading cultural learning centers in India, the USA, the UK, Malaysia and Singapore.

Under her tutelage, Sheela focused on advanced aspects of nritta (rhythm and footwork), abhinaya (expression), and choreography. She blossomed into a consummate artist. As her teacher's apprentice, Sheela assisted her guru in choreography and training in Nrityakalamandiram. She also traveled as Guru Bhanumati's apprentice, imparting training to under-privileged students in rural areas near Bangalore. This was part of a community education venture by Nrityagram, a residential dance school near Bangalore. Through this enlightening and gratifying experience, Sheela discovered her passion for teaching dance as well.


“The only sin is mediocrity.” - Martha Graham


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