Performing Arts & Aesthetics (57)

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    Vyangyavyakhya (interpretation of implied sense), ninth century, is the first performance text in Sanskrit applying dhvani to Bharata’s theatre. The author Kulasekhara deserves a place next to Anandavardhana and Abhinavagupta in the history of Natyasastra studies. The text is published for the first time.

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    Vyangyavyakhya by: K.G. Paulose 1,250.00 1,125.00

    The doctrine of dhvani, expounded by Anandavardhana (ninth century ce) in Kashmir though contested by his contemporaries at home, received sound acclamation in Kerala. A royal dramatist — Kulashekhara – of the same century applied dhvani to the theatre. His performance text is known as Vyangyavyakhya (VV), meaning interpreting the implied. This was an epoch-making event in the history of Indian theatre. This innovation in performative practices marked a deviation from Bharata’s national tradition and laid down the foundation for classical forms like Kutiyattam, Kgrshnanattam, Kathakali and Mohiniyattam. VV today continues to inspire contemporary directors to formulate new interpretative sub-texts for ancient plays. VV, which remained in manuscripts till now, is published for the first time.
    As icing on the cake, four eminent scholars — K.D. Tripathy, Radhavallabh Tripathi, N.P. Unni and Kavalam Narayana Panikkar – delve deep into the aspects of VV as introduction to this book. This volume discusses in detail the Sanskrit theatre until tenth century ce, performance texts of Dhananjayadhvani and Samvaranadhvani, and the developments in the post-Kulashekhara era.
    VV should serve as a guide to all practitioners of performing arts, and should entice students, teachers and lovers of Indian performing arts.

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    This collection of essays is a pioneering attempt to look at Hindustani rhythm from the viewpoint of the contemporary Western aesthetics, as also to weigh this aesthetics against the theory and practice of rhythm as it permeates and determines the music and Kathak dance of north India. (46 words)

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    Winged Form by: S.K. Saxena 500.00 450.00

    This collection of essays, a thoroughly revised and enlarged version of its first earlier edition (1979), is a pioneering treatment of the Hindustani rhythm in the way of contemporary (Western) aesthetics. It seeks, on the one hand, to determine and distinguish the meaning of such key words as laya, matra, bol, theka, sama, and layakari, and, on the other hand, to seize the details and aesthetic semblances of live rhythm as they appear to contemplation.
    Some wider aesthetical questions have also been addressed in this book. How, if at all, can rhythm be regarded as an autonomous art? What are the elements of its winged form, and how can it yet appear steadfast and virtually motionless? Is it proper to speak of the art of rhythm as symbolic in its significance or as expressive in some distinctive way? Or, can it be said to ‘embody’ what it signifies?
    Insofar as rhythm is fast becoming a vital subject of aesthetic reflection in the West today, the book also seeks to weigh the conflicting views of two modern aestheticians, Susanne K. Langer and Philip Alperson, against the theory and practice of Hindustani rhythm.
    Every lover of this specific genre of rhythm stands to benefit from a reading of this book. It would prove to be of value also to those who are interested in Kathak dance, for no other classical dance of India depends so manifestly on rhythm.

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