Bharatanatyam, comes to us in the 21st century with a sense of surrealistic splendour and dazzling dynamics. The dance has close linkages with old sculpture and paintings and with ancient texts, which give it a quite authority without impinging on the expansive creative spaces it needs. The dance embraces the most abstract and evolved concepts of human thought – enunciated in poetry, arranged to melody and framed in the perimeter of rhythm. Visually it moves between the stillness of stylized lines and the voluptuous volumes of sculptures from the southern areas, which fall in the modern Indian states of Tamil Nadu and Karnataka. Its concerns depict our times, trials and tribulations. It has moved from only myth and mildness to issue and arguments reflective of an organic process. Rooted in pristine Indianness, Bharatanatyam is qualified by the spirit of the sacred and celebrates the values that are intrinsic and eternal to the Indian civilization. Like the history of the civilization or the rivers that nurtured them, the dance form flows through the ages
From the age of four, Purvadhanashree started learning the Tanjavur style of Bharatanatyam from her mother Smt. Kamalini Dutt, senior disciple of Guru Sikkil Ramaswamy Pillai. Purva received training in the Kalakshetra style from Smt. Radhika Shurajit, premier student of the Dhananjayans, for twelve years.
In 2000 Purva began her training in Vilasini Natyam, the art of Telugu temple dancers,and learnt this style for fourteen years under Guru Swapnasundari. Purvadhanashree gave her maiden performance in Bharatanatyam in 1995 and in 2006 her first major performance in Vilasini Natyam.. Since then she has been presenting both the styles across the country and has performed Bharatanatyam on several international platforms.
Vilasini Natyam is the name given to the dance tradition of the Telugu temple dancers. Unlike similar traditions that have evolved in other regions of the country, the ritual-specific (Gudi Seva), ceremonial-specific (Kacheri Ata) and dance operatic (Ata Bhagavatam) aspects of the temple dances form an integral part of the Vilasini Natyam repertoire. Apart from being a distinctive style, Vilasini Natyam is unique in that it retains the functional classification of the art practiced by these artistes, suitably adapted for modern-day stage presentation.
An exquisite form of expression shaped over centuries enriched by the artistic imagination of countless temple dancers, this dance tradition has been researched and recast by Guru Swapnasundari, who worked under the guidance of Maddula Lakshmi Narayana, a senior exponent of this tradition.