The Newz Radar
MANDI: Dinesh Kumar, first male postgraduate kathak dancer of Himachal Pradesh, regaled the audience with remarkable performance at Satya Sai Baba Ashram at Puttaparthi, Andhra Pradesh, earlier this week. He had gone there along with his disciple Manish Prashar on an invitation by Sri Satya Sai Central Trust.
During the event, they presented “Shiv Strotam”, “Megh Malhar”, “Thumri” and “Tarana” with captivating and graceful movements and fine footwork and mesmerised hundreds of people at Sai Kulwant Hall, the venue of the event. They received a thunderous applause for their presentations.
An accomplished artiste of Lucknow gharana of kathak, Dinesh is a disciple of great maestro Guru Shrimati Ila Pande who has performed over 1,500 stage shows, including performances in Sangeet Natak Akademi, Delhi; Yuvak Biradari and Kala Kendra, Mumbai; Kolhapur festival, Kanfur festival, Yamunanagar festival; Tagore Theatre, Chandigarh; IIC-Delhi, Jawahar Kala Kendra, Jaipur; Vrindavan festival, Kalka festival; Art and Language department, Shimla; and Ferindex at Faridabad, to name a few.
Dinesh’s journey in the field of “kathak” started at the age of 15 when he performed his first solo dance at the International Shivratri Fair in 1991. He completed his “Visharad” from Bhatkhande Sangeet Vidyapeeth, Lucknow, “Bhaskar” from Pracheen Kala Kendra, Chandigarh, post-graduation from Indira Kala Sangeet Vishwavidyalaya, Khairaga; and diploma from Kathak Kendra, Delhi.
He was bestowed upon a two-year scholarship by Sahitya Kala Parishad, Delhi, in 1999. His stunning performances won him several awards, including Himalayan Culture Heritage Award 2002, Prashasti Patar, Maharaja Sir Chader Prakash Award, Swami Vivekanand Award 2010, Himachal Kesri 2010, Himatru Award, National Builder Award, Guru Shishya Parampara Award and Nritya Shiromani Award.
The kathak dancer has been invited to various dance competitions across the state and country as a dance examiner judge, including at Punjabi University, Patiala; University of Rohtak, Guru Nanak Dev University and Himachal Pradesh University.
The renowned artiste who has established his name among best performers in Himachal Pradesh is presently working as a music teacher at the DAV School, Sundernagar. His professional dancing career, however, started at the age of 20 when he showcased his talents with hands and footsteps at the Gaiety Theatre, Shimla, in a show organised by the Art and Language Department, Shimla.
He is passing on his talent, style and vision to other budding artistes in his own venture, Kala Kshetra Yuva Mandal, an organisation which is affiliated by Pracheen Kala Kendra, Chandigarh. The students get diploma in music and dance in a two-year course here. He conducts various dance workshops in school, colleges and universities where he trains students in “kathak” dance forms.