Please see the "Basis for Transliteration" tab for further help with transliteration used in the compilation of the  slokams.  (Note: Transliteration is used only for the slokams). It is our honest thought that as we progress, the students of "Sree Nrithya Siddhi School of Kuchipudi Dance" or any interested art lovers / students should be able to appreciate the significance of the Slokams . As the students learn and get comfortable with the slokams below, we will go into the details. All updates will be posted on the web site. Honest feedback / suggestions are appreciated. Prayer slokams are also included.  


The nAtya saSt'ram by Dr.pONamgi srIrAma appArAvu

The nAtya saSt'ram of Barat'amuni Translated into English by A Board of Scholars.

Notes from Kuchipudi Kalakshetram, Visakhapatnam. 

Slokam 1 :
Summary: This slokam was told by Sage Bharata to the other rishis. This slokam says: I bow my head reverentially to Lord Nataraja, the creator of dance and Lord Brahma, the creator of Natya Sastra. I hereby reveal the science of dance, as it was told to me by Lord Brahma (the creator of Natya Shatra).

Slokam 2 :
Summary: While offering prayers to the celestials, the anjali hastha (both the palms with the fingers all stretched, facing each other and put together) should be held above the head; to the Guru, in front of the forehead; and to all elders, in front of the chest. For others there are no specified rules.

Slokam 3 :
Summary: I pay my salutations to Mother Earth (Bhumi Devi) who is conceived from Lord Vishnu's power and strength. She, who is endowed with precious gems and a magnificent horizon of picturesque colors, is the embodiment of beauty and wealth.

Slokam 4 :
Summary: Oh Mother Earth, you who are dressed by the blue oceans and have the mountains as breasts, please forgive me for stamping on you with my feet while dancing.

Slokam 5 :
Summary: The Saushtavam posture of a dancer is described in the above slokam. It is defined as the alignment of the ears with the waist; the elbows and the shoulders with the neck; while having the body stretched forward, with the chest raised. This is called Saushtavam.

Slokam 6 :
Summary: A Matrka is formed by the combination of stanakas, charis and nritta hastas. A few matrkas form a karanaa.

Slokam 7 :
Summary: To execute a karana, the left hand should be placed in front of the chest and the feet should be turned to the side. Dance should be started with the right hand and right foot.

Slokam 8 :
Summary: Through dance, one can attain the goals of human life (the four purusharthas: dharma, ardha, kaama and moksha), name and fame and is also said to be ideal for providing a righteous path for future generations.

Slokam 9 :
Summary: Lord Brahma said,“ I hereby describe Natya, which is enriched by all sciences and all sculptures, and which can be considered as the Panchama Veda (fifth holy scripture)”.

Note: Sastraas are identified as six. They are as follows:
  1. Vyakaranam
  2. Chandassu
  3. Nyayamu
  4. Jyotishyamu
  5. Niruktam
  6. Meemamsa

Slokam 10 :
Summary: Lord Brahma created Natya Sastra by incorporating literature (PaaTham), music (Geetam), expression (Abhinayamu) and emotion (Rasa) extracting each of them from Rig, Sama, Yajur and Atharvana Vedas respectively.

Slokam 11 :
Summary: There is no jnaanam, no silpam, no vidya, no yogam and no karma in the world that is not already present in Natya.

Slokam 12 :
Summary: The nature of the world is a combination of happiness and sorrow which exist in equal measure. When this is expressed through different movements of our body, it is called Natya.

nAtyam, nr't't'am,  nr't'yam
Slokam 13 :
Summary: Dance is classified into three different groups by the saints, namely Natyam, Nruttam and Nrutyam. Natyam is defined as the one which is associated with a drama or narrative (natakam) which also involves a previous story.

Slokam 14 :
Summary: Nritta is defined as the dance exclusive of Rasa (emotion) and Bhava (mood). Nrithya is defined as the dance inclusive of Rasa (emotion), Bhava (mood), Sahithya (text of the song) and Abhinaya (expression).

Slokam 15 :
Summary: The above mentioned three-fold classification of Natya is further classified into two varieties, namely, Laasya and Tandava. Laasya involves graceful elements where as Tandava is described as the vigorous part of dance.

Slokam 16 :
Summary: Without emotions, dance is meaningless. Emotion originates through the combination of Vibhava (cause or determinant), Anubhava (consequent) and Sanchaari Bhava (transitory state of mind).

Slokam 17 :
Summary: Natyam comprises of the following attributes: Rasa (emotion), Bhava (mood), Abhinaya ( expression), Dharmi (representative technique),Vrtti (style employed in a dramatic representation), Pravrtti (usage if local style in vogue in some regions), Siddhi (achievement), Swara (musical notes), Atodhya (musical instruments), Ganam (song or music) and Rangastalamu (stage).

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