KATHAK

Kathak, an Indian Classical Dance form, is the culmination of years of varied cultural influences on the art that emanated from the story-tellers of the ancient temples.

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Kathak contains traces of temple and ritual dances, along with certain features of Persian and Central Asian dances. Intricate footwork and spins, as well as abhinaya, the art of expression, are the highlights of Kathak.

The name Kathak is derived from the Sanskrit word katha meaning story.


The most striking thing about Kathak in comparison with the other dance styles is the impression it creates of extreme subtlety.
— Rina Singha and Reginald Massey in 'Indian Dances: Their History and Growth'

GLOSSARY

  • Tāl: Rhythmic time-cycle.

  • Mātrā: Beat, Unit of measuring duration of a Tāl

  • Ᾱvartan: One cycle of a Tāl

  • Sam: The first beat of a Tāl 

  • Vibhāg: The divisions of a Tāl

  • Tāli: literally: ‘clap’. Used to show the accented beat in a Tāl.

  • Khāli: literally: ‘empty’. A blank beat, negative accent in a Tāl.

  • Tablā: A percussion instrument often used as an accompaniment to Kathak dance. It is comprised of two drums. 

  • Bol: A Bol is a sound or syllable. Helps identify and recite rhythms.

  • Thekā: Thekā is the Tablā bol for a Tāl.

  • Laya: Laya means tempo. Duration between beats determines Laya of a Tāl or a Tāl based composition.

  • Tatkār: Dance syllables produced from stomping. Basic footwork  for a Tāl.

  • Parhant: Recitation of bols of a composition indicating beats of a Tāl.

  • Torā: A group of bols or syllables that starts and ends on sam.

  • Kavitt: A Torā based on a poem. It is composed of bols that have meaning.

  • Tihāi: A rhythmic pattern that repeats three times.

  • Lari: A chain of footwork patterns, ends with a tihāi

  • Chakkar/ Pheri: literally: spin. The Chakkar in Kathak is performed on the heel. 


KATHAK QUIZ - JUL 2019

FILL IN THE BLANKS

(1) The “Abhinaya Darpana” written by ________, is an ancient Indian treatise on the performing arts.

(2) Kathak Nritta Hastaks are documented in the book named  __________

(3) First beat of a Tāl is called  ____

(4) The straight or level glance, while eyes are kept still is called _________ drishti 

(5)  In __________ Nritta Hasta, arms extend outward and palm snaps as if slapping on a drum

(6) Tihāi is a composition type in which a rhythmic phrase or pattern is repeated _____ times.

(7) Each repeated cycle of a Tāl is called __________

(8) _________ implies emphasizing various syllables of tatkār. It literally means ‘weight’ or stress/ accent.

(9) _________ is the stylized depiction of ‘the veil’

(10) Gentle exercise/ practice done to increase heart rate prior to a dance class and/or performance is called __________


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