Dance is a celebration of the divinity of being. In India the art of Dance is a result of thousands of years of refinement and countless cycles of artists and Gurus. Odissi invokes the grace of Lord Jagannatha, the Lord of the Universe, another attribute to Vishnu. Orissa is known as the land of temples and Odissi became an inseparable part of the rituals of the temple since the 9th Century. Odissi dance reflects the sculpturesque poses of temples dating back to the second century, B.C. in the rounded curves and flexions of the style, especially the "Tribanga" or "triple-bend" pose.

The fact that this dance has survived so many centuries and has a vitality for us today illustrates how human nature continues to present universal truths through our arts. This is an art not only for connoisseurs, but is intended for all the people to enjoy, to embrace and to share.

 

Padma Vibhushan Guru Kelucharan Mohapatra is the primary architect in the revival of classical Odissi dance over the past half-century.  Past 75 years, he is the undisputed master performing artist, choreographer, teacher and percussionist of Odissi dance.  He has received every possible award, has trained most of the leading exponents of the form and is the revered and respected for his genius as an artist all over the world.  Sharon had the privilege to study with Kelubabu from 1975 and having Kelubabu present her Odissi and Manipuri performance in Orissa in 1976.  He has accompanied her on pakawaj for performances around India and on tour in the U S during the Festival of India USA and performed together at the Metropolitan Museum in NYC.