Saturday, December 4, 2010

Lingaraj Pradhan

Lingaraj Pradhan is a young, energetic and committed dancer, who has dedicated himself to the supreme power of dance. His sculpturesque dancing, radiant eyes and ever-smiling face light up the light of one’s world.

Trained since the age of fifteen under the able guidance of Guru Shree Bichitrananda Swain, under the direct supervision of Padmashree Guru Gangadhar Pradhan, Lingaraj has had the honor of touring many places in India and abroad with the Rudraksh Foundation. He is training many enthusiasts hailing not only from different parts of India but also from The U.S, Canada, France, Germany and Japan. He is also frequently invited to conduct workshops and has taught in such cities as Seattle, Los Angeles, Tampa, Paris, Germany, Italy and Mumbai. 

He completed his Masters in Music in Odissi Dance from Utkal Sangeet Mahavidyalaya, Bhubaneswar and was the recipient of the National Scholarship from the Govt. of India. He has been awarded the prestigious "Ustad Bismillah Khan Yuva Puraskar" for the year 2009 by Sangeet Natak Akademi, New Delhi. He studied Mardala under the tutelage of Guru Sri Banamali Moharana, Guru Sri Gangadhar Pradhan and is continuing under Guru Shree Dhaneswar Swain.

His goal is to empower and inspire the youth of today with the transformative power of dance. 

Rashmi Ranjan Barik

Since his childhood, Rashmi Ranjan has followed his interest in Odissi Dance and has been pursuing it till date. He is continuing his training at Rudraksh Foundation under Guru Bichitrananda Swain and simultaneously doing his Bachelor of Music in Odissi Dance at Utkal Sangeet Mahavidyalaya, Bhubaneswar. He has performed in national as well as state level festivals like Uday Shankar Dance Festival, Kolkata, NCPA, Mumbai, Kharavela Mahotsav, Bhubaneswar, Baishaki Nrityotsav, Visakhapatnam etc. 


Amulya Balabantray

Amulya Balabantaray started his initial training as a gotipua dancer under the able guidance of Bijay Kumar Sahoo. He was carefully nurtured under the direct supervision of Guru Gangadhar Pradhan at Orissa Dance Academy. Currently, he is one of the upcoming artistes of Rudrakshya, being trained under the able guidance of  Guru Bichitrananda Swain. He is the recipient of Senior National Scholarship from the Govt. of India. Amulya has performed at many major dance festivals of India like Konark Dance Festival, Odissi Festival, Mamallapuram Festival, Natyanjali Festival, Odissi Sandhya, Megha Utsav, Mukteswar Dance Festival, etc. He also had the privilege of performing at the 2nd International Odissi Festival,2003, USA. He has also performed in all the major cities of USA in 2003.

Saswat Joshi

Jyoti Rout

Samskritiki - The Festival Hosts

In 1989, a few friends in Odisha’s small town of Kendujhar – in their late 20’s then - thought of forming a forum that would intellectually enrich them through an inter-disciplinary approach to knowledge. They named the forum as Renaissance Universe and continued to host monthly seminars on a wide range of topics that ranged from science to philosophy and language to technology.

Three years later, the forum was rechristened as Samskritiki on Utkal Divas, the Foundation Day of Odisha State, and subsequently it was registered as a Society with the Government of Odisha. The seminars apart, Samskritiki continues to host an annual state-level art festival – Kendujhar Kala Utsav – at Kendujhar that features events of visual art, performing arts and literature. It also runs a public library in the town besides promoting and supporting smaller libraries and cultural organizations in the district. It has established a Sunday Art School that is affiliated to Orissa Lalit Kala Akademi and a Crafts Development Centre that has received support from the Development Commissioner of Handicrafts under Ministry of Textiles, Government of India.

After operating for 15 years as a district-level cultural society, Samskritiki extended its activities to the state-level and shifted its base to Bhubaneswar in 2005. Development of a resource and documentation centre on Orissa’s culture in the Capital City has been its primary activity over the past five years. It has also set up an exclusive library on art and culture at the Orissa Modern Art Gallery in Bhubanerswar since 2007. Dissemination of a daily e-bulletin ( containing news and information on culture has been another major activity of Samskritiki since August 2007. Through the bulletin, we are reaching out to scores of individuals and institutions across the globe and developing a linkage among them all.  

Samskritiki was instrumental in setting up of the Odisha Samskruti Academy
(Orissa Culture Academy) - its sister institution - in Bhubaneswar since 2008. The Academy, headed by young scholar-journalist Kedar Mishra, hosts the annual Udayaraga poetry festival, aalap (a dialogue with the distinguished) and aasara (concerts) at regular intervals.

Samskritiki’s creative papier machie craft developed by Arun Kumar Ojha of Keonjhar, a key-member of the Samskritiki family, has put Odisha prominently in the crafts map of India after Tamil Nadu and Jammu & Kashmir, the two states which were earlier known for their paier machie craft.   

Odissi International would the first major cultural event that Samskritiki would host in December in Bhubaneswar with nearly 200 dancers coming from 14 countries.  

Samskritiki is not merely an institution. It is a campaign for culture that seeks your support and intimate involvement.    

Shyamhari Chakra