Rupashree Kala Mandir, a Puri-based institution, which has kept this ancient dance form alive, will present several repertoires of the temple dance form during ‘Srimandira Mahari Parampara’, a dance concert to be held in Rabindra Mandap here.
“Mahari dance is one of the oldest temple dance forms in the country. But, as western culture has encroached upon all traditions and cultures, Mahari has come under the grip of cultural plagiarism. We have been trying to promote this art form among the youth,” said president of Rupashree Kala Mandir, Dr Basant Kumar Pati.
Mahari danseuse Rupashree Mohapatra said, “Mahari came from two Odia words Mahan and Nari, meaning divine damsels. These women used to provide various services at Lord Jagannath temple. With time, it was stopped, but we are trying to keep it alive.”
She said about 65 young girls are learning Mahari dance from her, of whom 15 are foreigners.
During the concert, Odissi dancer Sutapa Talukdar will be presented Harapriya Debadashi Award and Guru Niranjan Rout will receive Sashimani Denadashi award for lifetime achievement in the field of classical dance and music. Besides, Guru Dhaneswar Swain, Mahapatra Minati Bhanja and Surendra Mishra will also be felicitated on the occasion.