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Alarmel Valli

Alarmel ValliAlarmel Valli was born and brought up in Chennai, where she did her schooling from The Sacred Heart Matriculation School, at Church Park, Chennai and later studied at the Stella Maris College, Chennai. Alarmel Valli is a foremost exponent of the Pandanallur tradition in Bharatanatyam. She is hailed as a creative artist who brings depth, intensity and naturalness to her work. She has won laurels several times in the major festivals in India and in almost all the cultural capitals of the world.

Born in 1957, Valli at the age of 16 was invited to perform at the International Dance Festival, of the Sarah Bernardt Theatre De La Ville in Paris. From then on she has toured widely and received acclaim for her performances in leading theatres almost all over the world. Along with the performances she has also given lecture demonstrations, classes, workshops and seminars and has helped to create an international awareness of Bharatanatyam.

Alarmel Valli was trained by renowned gurus, Shri Chokkalingam Pillai and his son Shri Subbaraya Pillai. Valli has studied ‘Padams’ and ‘ Javalis’ for many years under the eminent musician Smt. T. Muktha, of the renowned Veena Dhanammal style of music. She has also learned Odissi under renowned Guru Kelucharan Mohapatra and his disciple Guru Ramani Ranjan Jena. Valli has done research for around 12 years on classical Tamil anthologies of Sangam poetry (2000 years old) and she has worked to give the richness of the poems a visual and melodic dimension. Valli has evolved her own distinct style and extended her tradition within the broad framework of classical Bharatanatyam.

Alarmel Valli has many honours and awards to her credit. She is the recipient of numerous State and National awards. Alarmel Valli received the ‘state award of Kalaimamani’ in 1979 and was made the ‘state Artist of Tamilnadu’ between 1981 & 84. She was awarded the prestigious title of ‘Nrithya Choodamani’ in 1985 and was the youngest dancer to be conferred the President’s award of ‘Padmasri’ in 1991. In 1997, she was honoured by the City of Paris, with the ‘Grande Medaille de la Ville de Paris’ and in 2001, receive the Award of the Sangeet Natak Akademy. In 1984, Alarmel Valli founded ‘Dipashikha’ a Centre for Performing Arts which imparts training for budding talents. Alarmel married to Bhaskar Ghosh, former I&B secretary and former director general of Doordarshan and settled down abroad after marriage.

Major Performances in India

  • Khajuraho Festival
  • Elephanta Festival (Bombay)
  • Ellora Festival (Bombay)
  • Sawai Gandharva Festival (Pune)
  • Sahitya Kala Parishad Festival (Delhi)
  • Shanmugananda Festival (Bombay)
  • Tansen – Tyagaraj Samroh (Lucknow)
  • Kalidas Festival (Bhopal)
  • Delhi Tamil Sangam Festival
  • Akshaya Festival (Delhi)
  • Doverlane Music Festival (Calcutta)
  • Kala Academy’s Sangeeth Samroh (Goa)
  • Soorya Dance Festivals (Kerala)
  • Nishagandhi Festivals (Kerala)
  • Bharatotsav Festival (Kerala)
  • Nrityagram’s Cultural Festival (Bangalore)
  • Kinkini Nrithyotsav Festival (Bangalore)
  • Indus (Bombay)
  • Chembur Fine Arts festival ( Bombay)
  • Tamil Isai Sangam (Madras)
  • Music Academy Festivals (Madras)
  • Mylapore Fine Arts Festivals (Madras)
  • Naradha Gana Sabha Festivals (Madras)
  • Kalakshetra Festival (Madras)
  • Bharat Kalachar Festivals (Madras)
  • Indian Fine Arts Society Festivals (Madras)
  • Bhagyachandra Cultural Festival (Manipur)
  • Krishna Gana Sabha Dance Festivals (Madras)
  • Sangeet Natak Academy Festival (New Delhi)
  • ICICI’s Siddharth Mehta Festival (Bombay)
  • Pracheen Kala Kendra’s Festival (Chandigarh)
  • Festival of the Sangeet Natak Academy (Delhi)
  • Cultural Festival organised by the Tata Theatre (Bombay)
  • The NCPA (National Centre for Performing Arts, Bombay)

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