The Diploma in Dance is a rigorous four-year full – time course in Bharatanatyam.
Students are taught the adavus based on Rukmini Devi’s systematized method for their first year and most of their second year. Students are taught exercises and yoga, which aid and diversify the range of movement. Items are gradually introduced into the curriculum from the second year onwards, and students begin learning abhinaya pieces from their third year. Students graduate from the four year diploma course with a strong theoretical, musical and language foundation which allows them to understand and incorporate new items into their repertoire, and, with continued practice and performance, to gain further insights into the dance form.
The Kalakshetra diploma in Carnatic music is unique in requiring 4 years of training, with 3 hours of main music class daily, more than any other comparable program. Classes are small and individualized and the students’ progress is based on their strength of lerning and on the discretion of the teachers.
Teachers cover rare ragas and rare kritis as and when it aids the student’s learning process. They also cover works by all of the major composers, including compositions by those great gurus who worked at Kalakshetra, like Tiger Varadachariar, Mysore Vasudevachariar, Budalur Krishnamurthi Sastri, and M.D. Ramanathan, who all shaped the way music is taught here.
Voice culture is an important aspect of vocal music teaching, with regular sruti exercises, aakaram, and regular repetition of basic exercises in many raagas. This helps students to produce correct notes at quick speeds.
Every vocal student must take an instrument as a subsidiary subject, apart from other subjects like the theory of music, study of the lives of great musicians, and shastras related to music. They also do field trips to Thiruvaiyaru and other places of interest for carnatic music. Yoga is commonly taught to all students in Kalakshetra and two out of three languages are compulsory-Sanskrit, Telegu, and Tamizh.
If a student takes an instrument like veena, violin, or mridangam as their main subject, then vocal music becomes their subsidiary subject. Apart from this, they follow the same syllabus as the vocal student. .
The Course Module has Eight Semesters in Four Years. (i.e. – approximately17 weeks per semester excluding the holidays and examinations.)
- Mid June to mid November
- Mid November to mid April.
- Indian art
- Academic studies
- Graphic studio.
- Computer and Photography
- Art History – Indian, Western, Old World, Cotemporary Indian and Contemporary Western
- Allied – Any one of the Performing Arts
- Heritage etc.
Art began probably when man saw his own reflection in the moonlit waters after a day’s hard work and tried to draw the same intuitively at the inner part of the caves! To adorn was again a natural desire, which continues even to-day, giving vent to the fountainheads of creativity.
What began as an admixture of adulation and fear of natural elements slowly evolved into worship followed by deifying even the animals that were both a boon and curse for their agricultural activities.The unsolved myth of life after death precipitated ancestral worship.
The Religion began and with it the rituals and ceremonies dictating wonderful expressions in Fine Arts.
- Pre-Historic Cave Paintings to Folk and Tribal arts to Classical Arts, the innovative and inspiring odyssey has been immortalized in prose, poetry and visual arts.
- The innovative creation of the palette, the brushes and the canvas for producing the wonderful kaleidoscopic marvels from eco-friendly, locally available natural materials – from the snowcapped mountains to the windswept deserts, rain forests to sandy beaches, hilly plantations to fertile plains is the living tradition of Indian Art-Paramparyam -which continues even today.
The variety available- from Ajanthan murals (2nd century B.C. to 6th century.A.D.) transgressing religious fervors to secular concepts, reaching the zenith with true frescoes in theBrahadeeswarar temple (10th century), in Tamilnadu, with feverish renaissance during the Vijayanagara and Naik periods, culminating in the Maratha school in South India (17th century A.D.) , inspiring Miniature Paintings and extensive Frescoes in North India each of the above with its own dialect – is astounding The aim of the Indian Art Section is to impart some of these guiding principles and techniques.
With the waning of European influence a new movement has started in the art scene – Bengal School which gradually blossomed into Madras School, Bombay School etc.The shift from myths and legends to still life, nature study and figure drawing from live models paved way for a Contemporary Expression with Multipoint Perspectives is explored in Academic Studies
Similar expressions were gaining momentum in sculptures. A study of theories, Old and New, methodologies and a variety of available mediums gave an impetus to Sculpture Studio with their burgeoning textures, treatments and technologies.
The oldest evidences for Archaeological studies are the pottery and ceramic shreds. With the imposing antiquity looming large, ceramics has evolved into a phenomenal medium depending on the varieties of clay available and the dexterity of the artist.
With global digitilisation, an introduction to computers and photography has become a necessity at least to document personal works.
The Seals were the mark of Sovereignty. Clay tablets, molten lac with metal impressions, tattoos etc were the endless ways of marking which has evolved into an art form – Graphic Studio. From stenciling through Lino-cut, wood-cut , Acid-etching to Screen Printing endless ways are taught in this stream opening up new vistas.
History connects the old and new and guides the evolutionary changes with technological innovations in all spheres of life. A study to grasp the underlying similarities and to fathom pastures new is Historical Studies Fine Arts are a totality. Like yin – yam both Visual and performing arts has to co exist to complement each other. Hence the study of any one of the performing arts is made compulsory for the Visual Arts Students.
Languages are the mode of communication and understanding. As most of the old manuscripts are in Sanskrit, Tamil being the local language, Telugu as most of the Krithis are in Telugu and English needed to interact with one another; they have all been included in the Syllabus.
An introduction to the great legacy of the Indian Soil – The Heritage – encompassing the Iconography, temple architecture and related concepts as are closely knitted to fine arts has become a necessity and is learnt with avowed interest by the students. The whole exercise is meant to give the students a broad and strong foundation to understand the language of arts when they step out .Then they could mix and match and evolve their own