30th October 2006, 02:45 PM
[tscii:2203ebb1d7]MOHINIYATTOM the dance of the enchantress has lain very much in the shadow. But this dance of Kerala has more takers outside the State. Many like Kanak Ralae, and Bharathi Sivaji, has taken it as a mission to popularize Mohiniyattom. The latest addendum is PALLAVI KRISHANAN, a name which has synonymous with Mohiniyattom. Pallavi a native of West Bengal was in the city yesterday for a performance. Excerpts from the interview:
Pallavi’s father was serving for Damodar Valley Corporation at Kolkatta. She started learning Kathak. "As a child I love to view watch dance programs on television. I saw Mohiniyattom once. its soft and gentle movement, lack of sudden jerks, and heavy emphasis on thala, attracted me. Its gestures of the eyes and hands, expression of the face, voluptuous poses of the body, and uncomplicated costumes made me an ardent fan and I decided to learn this dance form. " SHE SAID.
After graduation, she joined Shantiniketan for the four year dance course, on Kathakali and Manipuri. She continued her pursuits as a Bharatanatyam and Mohiniyattom dancer. She learnt Rabindrasangeet too. She came to Kerala and joined Kerala Kalamandalam, to learn Mohiniyattom. Leelamma was my guru. She choreographed Rituranga by Tagore in Mohiniyattom style.

An outstanding performer guru and choreographer, she combines both adavus, and abhinaya aesthetically and has designed a style of her won.
"Once I happened to see a performance by Bharati Sivaji. Her graceful movements, replete with abhinaya over powered me. Later Protima Bedi invited me to join Nrityagram. There started my acquaintance with Bharati Sivaji. Each of her movements weRE gracefully composed and it was an eye opener."
Pallavi is wedded to KKGopalakrishnan, and has established Lasya Academy of Mohiniyattom at Thrissur.

She has performed allover the world. Her latest work “Saalabhanjika” is the story on Ahalya awaiting salvation. The sculpture saalabhanjika attains salvation only if the sculptor breathes life into it which is impossible. The lyric for this theme is composed by Kaavalam Panicker.