Celebrating all our guest artists who have performed with us in past in our journey of dance productions. These guest artist are invited to come and perform with their own work. The talent that they perform are not taught by us. These are not our students either. They have their own dance/talent academy at some place/city or have their own group that they perform. We pick their performance piece dance based on our dance production.
These Guest Artist are local or new artists who have just stepped in the world of Indian Performing Arts or have just started performing.
It is our absolute honor to introduce them to our audiences and as well work with them.
2016 : Dance of Gods : Adi-Shakti. Event : A fundraiser for CRY America showcasing Bharatanatyam, Bollywood, Indian Folk Dances. Fusion Dances by Elites in respective categories. Guest Artist : Dancer : Meghna Murali, A Bharatanatyam dance presentation on Devi. Singer : Mala Pydimari, Carnatic Singer.
2017 : Jalso : Celebration of Life with Dance, Event : Nritya Ki Masti, Navarasa in Bharatanatyam, Bollywood And Indian Folk Dances. A seperate presentation of Fusion Dances was also showed by our own students, elites-trained in 3 different dance forms/styles. Guest Artist : Dancer : Easter Bunny. 2018 : ABCD - American Born Cultured Desi Event : Participating fundraiser for a private foundation-Cqunce Inc. Dances in Bharatanatyam, Bollywood & Indian Folk Dances featuring Festivals of India or celebrated by Indians outside India. A special 11 minute tribute to Shahrukh Khan - King of Bollywood. Exclusive Fusion Dances were showcased by our elites who are trained in 2-3 different dance forms. Guest Artists : Dances : Mishu Shashtri with her team for Bollywood Garba featuring Navratri. Ritu Kharbanda with her team of Rang Barse duet featuring Holi. Instruments : Arjun Iyer (Middle Schooler, LISD School Band)-Clarinet & Keyboard. Kedar Golvekar : Introducing Music for SRK Tribute on Guitar.
2019 : Anantha-1 Dance Production. Event : An Exclusive Dance Production featuring a full Bharatanatyam Margam,Copyright Dances in Bharatanatyam, Folk Dances of India featuring North, East, West & South India. Special presentation by Elites for Fusion dances such as Swala Jathi, Rabindra Nruthya. Fully trained in their own dances. Guest Artist : Dances : Rinku Das for Kathak Classical Dances Rinku Das for Manipuri Classical Dances. Rinku Das was also introducing choreographer for our company that year. Singing : Our own elite student-Ashna Pethe representing LISD choir.
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Anantha Dance Production Series…………..
Anantha-1, a dance production series showcasing beauty, elegance, creativity, as well as infinite possibilities of Bharatnatyam, Indian Folk Dances, Rabindra Nruthya, Manipuri And Kathak. All of this without forsaking fundamentals.
Idea of Anantha was implanted in 2018 January when we had faced some challenges that opened doors to other possibilities.
First announcements were made to public in various medias from Nov 2, 2018 and onwards. Every year it just happens that as Grace And Grooves LLC plan their annual programs/recitals and they come out so beautiful that it ends up in dance productions with and without dance-musical dramas.
But the idea of dance recital was not enough for Bharatnatyam and Indian Folk Students after getting ready for 30-45 mins with all that make-up and costume. These students were to be taught the possibilities within the dance form and show it off separately. So, Anantha Production Series it was!
With straight background comes unlimited (Anantha) creativity. Thus, the name of “Anantha” was given to this dance production series with each dance showcasing unlimited possibilities in each dance forms. The name and concept is inspired from several dance production houses or dance institutes like that of her mom, own teachers, formal gurus, dance exponents such as Daksha V Joshi, Mrinalini Sarabhai, Daksha M Joshi, Tanjore Brothers Original Margam, Kalakshetra Foundation, Natyavihar Kalakendra. This intense training of over 34 years has given a shape to Hetal’s own dance creations within exclusive Indian Dance Forms such as Bharatanatyam and Indian Folk Dances. Some dances have also received exclusive copyright permissions to republish under the name of Hetal Nagaraj and some have received competition awards early this year and years before as well.
Anantha opened its door with Anantha-1 in 2019 to begin with on Jan 27, 2019 at Plano Courtyard Theater, Plano, Texas, USA from 330 PM to 730 PM and was a houseful event. The event was an introduction event to her elite students such as Ashna Pethe and The Setty Siblings who are in advance trainings from years now and Rinku Das-a budding artist of Dallas-Forth, Texas. These students roughly danced for more than 2 hours. In Anantha, their intern choreographers, performing teams got every opportunity to be creative under the supervision, direction of Hetal Nagaraj and yet feel challenged without forsaking fundamentals of each dance form. All of it with full safety on practicing it in the right way. It is not about perfection, it is about doing it right.
Hetal Nagaraj is artistic director of Grace And Grooves LLC. This is her 4th dance program in a row showcasing A Grade Indian Dance Productions with each dance as a reflection of her experiences, trainings and now the degrees. It has been peculiarity of Hetal that her dances include Nritta, Natya and Nruthya as its basic components with balance of Tandav and Lasyam. Each dance of her has a name to define with its subject in the dance along with dance themes that are full of life, happiness, thankfulness, blessings and above all beautiful costumes that she herself designs. But, Anantha-1 is Hetal Nagaraj’s VERY FIRST exclusive dance production for Indian Dance Forms and A Tribute to Rabindranath Tagore Famous Literature and Poems which as a matter of fact matched to our production name. All the students had so much fun learning and practicing for Anantha-1 during their regular class hours itself and no additional class is required. It is not like you pay, you get to be part of it, and be done with it. It is what they have learned, they’ll showcase.
No outside students were allowed to perform or take trainings or as part of freelance dancers. Even the guest artists are/were students of Grace And Grooves LLC enrolled in their exclusive programs. Anantha Dance Production Series is about Grace And Grooves LLC students and their team only. Hetal Nagaraj selects them for this dance production and not everybody is able to make it to her list.
We will always had a special guests like this time we had Rinku Das who will do their own dances and stick to our themes or request with their team or solo but they are our special guests.
From students who wanted the thrill got it covered along with students who wanted the fun of natyam alone still staying in their respective dance forms.
Who said dance forms are boring..Not at Grace And Grooves!
Congratulations to Students Samarth Setty(Age 11) and Tejawini(Adults) for completing their entire Bharatanatyam Margam in Anantha-1 by performing under the strict supervision, instruction and guidance of Mrs. Hetal Nagaraj. This was made possible by dancing back to back for straight 3 hours from Pushpanjali, Allaripu, Jatiswaram, Thillana, Group-Shabdam, Creative Bharatanatyam, Copyright Bharatanatyam Dance Pieces, and Rabindra Nruthya as well. This also means, that it can be very much called their own arangetram, if they choose not to do it as solo arangetrams, separately.
This is Hetal Nagaraj’s 2nd round of completion of full margam from start to finish by teaching it to various students. At Grace And Grooves, we aim to make sure you understand everything you see while we are just doing our job.
Every beautiful thing under this sky has a name and so do the dances.
From the thrill of nritta, beauty as in lasyam, fun of natyam, devotion as in bhakti and tapasya as in training, power as in shakti of tandav and possibilities as in Anantha- the infinite and we are still in same dance form when we do it right!
Anantha-1 Dance Production was made possible by Dhamaal Events in association with Grace Effects ( Gopal S and Dinesh Kumar for photography and videography services).
Big Shout Out To These Young Teenagers who had their paid student assignments at Anantha-1. Aditya Sangole as our Sound Technician and Emcee Yashika Nabar for our Dance Production Anantha-1.
Exclusive Copyrights by Reach Media for Hetal Joshi Nagaraj| Grace & Grooves | Grace Creations | Grace And Grooves | Nruthyakala Dance Academy | Mirchi Dance Academy | Kalasri Classical Dance Academy : 2012-2019.
This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed without permission.
#hetaljoshim #graceandgrooves #ananthaseries
August 2016 : We were excited to hear the news that Hetal Nagaraj got accepted for Masters Program at TDES via Tamil University in August 2016. College: Kalai Kaveri College of Fine Arts, Trichy, India.
A label & ID of OKC213160083A was given to her as Hetal Mahesh Joshi. She would mock to her students that she got her roll-number/student id too and that she is student too. Some of her students started calling her Hetal since then :).
Her inspiration of having a master degree in fine arts comes directly from one of her own cousin’s spouse/bhabhi (sister in law & aunt-2way relation:) who was enrolled in Masters Program @Darpana Academy, Ahmedabad India. Her Bhabhi had to leave her degree half-way for personal reasons and since then, Hetal Nagaraj had her mind set on doing Masters in either bharatnatyam, or theater with full dance work, at some point of time.
Finding a university or dance program that not only offers robust MASTERS program of Bharatnatyam but also offers in-depth knowledge of Natya Shashtra, History, Styles, Theaters and Musicals with the flexibility of long distance program was a challenge. Hetal Nagaraj got accepted in 2 universities for this program with her dance experience, video clips of main margam, creative bharatnatyam dances, direct referral letters from her past dance teachers and her existing Master Degrees in other education stream that she already had. Rest all the universities had a requirement to do a full 2 year resident program and stay local for full two years with classes non-stop through the week and weekend! For those in India or want to pursue their degree in India for on-campus degrees within India, most welcome to contact Hetal Nagaraj:firstname.lastname@example.org, she’ll be very happy to guide you for all these courses.
Biggest Challenge for Hetal Nagaraj was that she can’t just leave a young family and pursue dreams while running a full fledge A+ rating dance business with multiple locations, competitive performance schedules (almost every other month) in Bharatnatyam, Indian Folk Dances, Bollywood, Workshops, Elite performing team and all of that with her students taking part in competitions. Once you are married happily ever-after & have family, it is a package for whole family to achieve something as big as degree especially if parents are taking them; irrespective of whether or not you are in dance business! Whole family goes hand in hand to actually make it happen. Entire month of kids activities, planning meals for whole family, routines with home works, car-pooling, classes shuffled between choreographers as applicable in her absence, volunteer parents, website maintenance and it was STAAR Exam time for kids as well.
TDES via Tamil University gave her the options to not only be competitive at learning edge but flexibility to travel to Chennai for at-least one out of two degree years to give on-campus bharatnatyam theory exams, assignments, thesis/research, presentations, do practical exams, live concert, musical and folk dance drama to be showcased before the teachers for grading.
All these dances were with full makeup and relevant costumes and costume change as required. Further, she decided to choose her degree location at Don Bosco College of Arts And Science, Chennai, India as her on-campus exam training (1 month required in person or average of 20-days) and examinations (practical and theory, in person). She decided Chennai as her location considering that Tamil History was one of the main subject and so she wanted to stay around Chennai to complete her research subject from locally available sources such as libraries, bookstores and visits to local dance schools. Don Bosco College of Arts And Science was her pick from the list due to her past upbringing of Convent Schools in Gandhinagar(India) and then affiliated programs at Ahmedabad(India) due to its discipline, environment, experiences and education standards.
At first the initial plan was to go in second year. Plans changed when the syllabus arrived in Fedex from university with a whopping 22 dance items to take care of, showcase them, write 1 research paper each year, minimum of 2 assignments per year, minimum of 1 presentation per year, LIVE concert, nattuvangam, talam, ragam and Tamil History with all terms in Tamil. It was her husband Nagaraj who insisted that with this type of syllabus, she should take this as an opportunity and must go personally both the years, just like any student would do for each year in any other Masters Program.
The dance items and other master level dances required hours of practices and a mentor/guide to correct/remind as required because of complexity in choreography. They were in speed 2, 3 and 4 at a cutting edge but not a sweet cherry on the top, most in 3 and 4!
It isn’t for a regular bharatnatyam dancer who is barely trained and could still handle that type of work with that intense choreography. Complexity with speed 3 and 4 was tough nut after a long time for Hetal Nagaraj.
She learned latest concepts in Bharatanatyam which she had never learned or were not taught in North India probably because back then these were taught @post-arangetram level only. Most of these concepts were added to standard margam by Kalakshetra Foundation founded by Rukmani Devi, Chennai and by renowned Bharatanatyam Artists in multiple styles.
Thus the degree curriculum included Main Margam Items, Non-Margam Items as well as Additional Creative Choreography from renowned artist of Mysore Bani, Pandanallur Bani, Thanjavur Bani and Kalakshetra Bani margam as a compulsory LIVE concert-all of this with grading. While Vazhuvur Bani was one of the sub-topic for Mrs. Hetal Nagaraj as part of her research/dissertation. She took several skype/watsapp video classes from her guide Dr. Marie Stella who taught and corrected her for the possibilities in margam bharatnatyam dances with nattuvangam.
Her journey to full month stay at training and exam center for both the years were absolutely amazing! She stepped into this whole new world of Bharatnatyam with the infinite possibilities and complexities in southern India.
From what she thought would be questionable to do in various margam dances was NOW possible in unlimited combinations further. This experience opened a whole new creativity level in musicals, dance themes, concepts, usage of jatis and adavus in various permutations and combinations.
She implemented those concepts and was able to successfully use them not only in Bharatnatyam but in Indian Folk Dances and Bollywood/Tollywood/Indian Movie Dances of Grace And Grooves LLC giving exceptionally beautiful results with least amount of effort even for Bharatnatyam.
It took her 2 full years (2016 to 2018) for her to complete her degree in Masters In Fine Arts with whole family involved. This includes all our lovely students’ parents of our private classes who walked with her in her journey very beautifully as she had to meet her deadlines of submissions or had her parallel skype classes.
With the type of knowledge that she gained in practical classes (skype/video watsapp/in person @Pondicherry) with her guide Dr. Marie Stella and during monthly in-house trainings, she thanks god that it did not happen in a click of button.
It would be too much for human brain to absorb all that, if it were to happen! She thanks her Tamil friends’ grand-parents (who were bharatnatyam dancers themselves) who helped her with very old tamil dialects for her theory papers that required compulsory usage of these words for grading. A lot of her regional tamil friends from chennai as well found it difficult to explain or understand these terms. All of that happened for Hetal Nagaraj for both the years back to back, one year at a time with proper planning.
Don’t even wish for a degree in 1 day with a click of a button. It is not going to help you! It is the training from all the right people that will never fail you and that you will not experiment on students because you have studied each scenario with pros and cons & thus it is available for you to use in your own creative way, very very safely!
Just that common sense is something that no university will ever teach you and to master that you will have to let go your ego ;). This is irrespective of your age!
We strongly recommend all bharatnatyam dancers who are interested to go for this course provided you have the following :
- Zeal, patience, energy, money (investment in INR), and proper planning to do so.
- You should have done bharatnatyam up-to varnam level and above at some point in your life to be able to handle this type of work. Arangetram is irrelevant.
- Style of bharatnatyam will not matter for this particular degree because their program itself includes multiple styles.
- You must submit videos of any of these with other degrees that you have to become eligible for this program.
- Private classes with your guide will be required to get your smoothly through this journey with deadlines, protocols to be followed and your guide will help you with the following as well :
- if you have learned your bharatnatyam in non-traditional or conventional ways or you had several breaks through out your learning, or nattavangams, ragam, talam were not part of your training then you will have to educate yourself with these.
- Nattuvangam, Recitation of Jatis and Adavus are graded.
- In-person practicals, concerts participation is required. Must be ready to showcase all of above or as asked with full costume, makeup, hair-do; irrespective of any help available. Makeup artist may/may not be available.
- Expect morning 9am to 5pm dance routines and as you get closer to exams it will be 9am to 11pm practice hours. If you have any physical disability, come with doctor’s note or do not apply!
- List/selections of locations, accommodation to be take care by you while these will be required during your on campus trainings and all exams.
- Paid meals 3 times a day at the campus canteen and everything is available around the area.
- Most important-you should be ready to go for a month (average of 20 days approx and add 2 more days to get the feel of area and shopping for your concert). Attendance is strictly required during all the days for the on-campus classes and exams. Best if you go both years. It will be worth a trip….
- Cons : Make sure you stay at the top of conversation with these people and get it all in writing, we had students who were marked absent even when they were present, we had students whose names and marks were printed wrong and lot of such issues.. Hetal managed to get out clean because she is from security background and so she has habit of keeping track of everything. Our owner is on the top of everything and that is how she is able to make a positive and inspiring difference in her students’ life.
Specifics are mentioned deliberately in detail as an effort to provide all the information that you may need as a student to apply! This blog post details were taken from articles submitted by Hetal Nagaraj to company.
Hetal Nagaraj says I did it and she will love to guide you to do it too!
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Recital 2018 concept and theme was decided in 2016 by Hetal Nagaraj.
The students in beginning of 2017 were actually taught dances like-wise throughout the year covering just the basics staying in their own category.
The whole idea got the shape in October 2017 when a rough playlist was made. A couple of these dances were also showcased in some of local talent competitions (September-October 2017), Diwali Mela(s)-(November 2017) at various places and other local festival stages. And a few of these had already won the awards too such as Pushpanjali, Madhurashtakam (Practice video-Selected for finals).
With all the influences of Non.Indian Culture in our Indian Dances, Dramas and thus our lives, we thought of showing how a life of our next generations that are brought up here. As it says, A=American, B=Born, C=Confused, D=Desis. But for our students of Grace And Grooves, C stands for CULTURED DESI, CLEAR FUNDAMENTALS, AND CRYSTAL CUT Diamond like TALENTS. Talents that can’t be beaten, Talents that can’t be judged with shallow mark-ups or untrained eyes and Talents that can’t be shadowed.
Grace And Grooves is an Indian Dance School where students know difference between Bollywood And Indian Folk Dances, Bollywood And Bharatnatyam, Bharatnatyam and Indian Folk, Semi-Classical And Bharatnatyam too!
So the recital program 2018 of Grace And Grooves had Pure Bharatnatyam that showcased the richness of Indian Classical Dances to Fun Indian Folk, Fusion Folk, Movie Types Semi-Classical Dances infused with & without Desi-HipHop to real semi-classical dances, Bollywood Modern-Contemporary Desi-HipHop Fusions and Folk And the dance dramas inspired from movies such as Bahubali, Veer Zaara & many more.
Grace And Grooves successfully completed NAVARASA as per Natya Shashtra Guidelines in Bharatnatyam, Indian Folk Dances And Bollywood/Movie Dances in 2017-2018 year. All the dances are directed or choreographed exclusively by Hetal Nagaraj unless otherwise mentioned. Our Company Choreographers contributed with dances on Ramta Jogi by Mansi Chauhan and Ganesh Kavtuvam by Buvuneshwari Murugan.
We cannot forget Indian Movies that teaches us to dream big and live-happily ever after within our cultural boundaries—no matter where we go. Thus, our Special Feature of the evening & 90s Tribute was An Exclusive Tribute to Shahrukh Khan of Bollywood – SRK as we know him. It showcased non-stop 11 mins of SRK’s movie dances by around 20+ students and special appearances from Raghu K and Pavithra K. Videos will be shortly available.
Very first time in our recital, we had Guest Choreographers with Rang Barse-Holi Remix Tribute by Ritu Kharbanda and Bollywood Garba on Nagada Sang Dhol Baaje By Mishu Shashtri. Our Guest-Artist this time was a young artist – Arjun Iyer, Age 11 who played various notes starting from National Anthem of USA with music to notable Tamil Songs on Keyboard-Piano and Clarinet. Guest choreographer Ritu Kharbanda contributed with song of Om Shanti Om to our SRK non.stop dance extravaganza as her contribution to salute our King Khan with Harshita and Gargi.
All students, choreographers were acknowledged with participating medals and certificates during the show and later-during the classes. Below are the all the pictures, Enjoy And Don’t forget to sign up for our lessons : www.graceandgrooves.com
Phone : 972 979 2559
Facebook : https://www.facebook.com/GraceAndGrooves
Twitter : https://twitter.com/GraceAndGrooves
Golden Era of Movies in various Languages : 50s, 60s, 70s, 80s From Semi-Classical Mujras To Desi Hip Hop Infused with various Indian Folk Dances.Concept,Choreography, Choreographer, Direction by Hetal Nagaraj.
Special Thanks :
- Mishu Shastri-Dance, Ritu Kharbanda-Dance for their wonderful participation in Recital 2018, A Fusion Life of ABCD.
- Arjun Iyer for Instruments.(Pic Added Jan-2,2020)
- Kedar Golvelkar For Music on Guitar (Ankhon Mein Teri),
- Bhagwat Pandya For Sound Technician Services.
Exclusive Copyrights by Reach Media for Hetal Joshi Nagaraj| Grace & Grooves | Grace Creations | Grace And Grooves | Nruthyakala Dance Academy | Mirchi Dance Academy | Kalasri Classical Dance Academy : 2012-2020.
This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed without permission.
Post Updated : March 15 2018, Jan 2 2020.