The Metro Washington, DC, Chapter of the Global Organization of People of Indian Origin (GOPIO-Metro DC) sponsored a Yoga in Dance program at a capacity filled auditorium of a community center in Rockville, MD on Saturday, July 26, 2014. It was a real delight to watch the strenuous, yet highly precise sequences of dances with facial expressions and movements of hands and feet with music. Classical dance in India has traditionally been viewed as a form of Yoga.
Yoga, is one of intense Sadhana, or spiritual discipline, which demands complete physical and mental concentration for the practitioner. These dance forms are rooted in spirituality, the ultimate goal being Mokshya, or spiritual liberation for the performer and the audience alike. When examining a traditional Odissi repertoire, one can see the process through which the artists achieve their ultimate goal of spiritual liberation.
Ten members (five male dancers, three female dancers, Guru Bichitrananda Swain and Jaydev Das) of The Rudrakshya Institute of Art and Dance, Orissa performed Indian Classical Dances in Odissi style for over two hours presenting seven different items. These items included: Mangalacharan, Chandrika Kamodi, Mohan Murali Chhailo, Taal Tarang, Shiva Panchal, Samudita Madane Abhinaya, and Mokshya.
Troupe performing a dance
On behalf of the organizers, Dr. Renuka Misra, GOPIO International Coordinator, presented bouquets to the troupe members. The program was organized by Mr. Pratap Das, president of the Indian Performing Arts Promotions (IPAP). The APAP was established by members of the GOPIO-Metro DC in 1996 to promote performing arts activities in Metropolitan Washington area.