Bharatiya or Indian form of art is unique.It is not merely movement of body. It has profound purpose. It aspires to attain divine powers, to incite valour, to narrate the stories, .
Bharatiya dance is divided into the below category
1) nrtta (rhythmic dancing without a story);
2) nrtya (dramatic dancing with a narrative or descriptive theme);
3) natya (acting).
Perini Sivathandavam or Perini Thandavam is one form of nrtta. The word Perini is originated from “Prerana” which means “encouragement or motivation”. The purpose of the Perini Shiva Tandavam was to motivate the soldiers before war. Perini Shivatandavam is the ‘dance of the warriors’ performed by the males. The warriors perform this dance before going to battlefield, in front of the Shiva, who also is a Supreme dancer(Nataraj).
The Perini dance form is visible in the garbha gudi sculptures of Ramappa Temple,Warangal(built in 13th century). This ancient dance form, from Telangana. It originated and prospered in Telangana, during the Kakatiya dynasty.Jayapasena who was a military commander of Ganapatideva, conceptualised nritta based dance(abstract form of dance) and called it ‘Perini’. Abhinaya Darpan defines nritta as bodily movements without evoking Rasa Bhava (rati, hasya, soka, krodha, utsaha, bhaya, jugupsa, vismaya). Jayapasena also authored a Sanskrit treatise “Nritya Ratnavali” which is an authoritative text on Indian dance. Jayapa is the first person who wrote about the dances prevalent in Andhra. Both Desi and Margi forms of dances have been included in Nritya Ratnavali. It contains eight chapters. Folk dance forms like Perani, Prenkhana, Suddha Nartana, Carcari, Rasaka, Danda Rasaka, Shiva Priya, Kanduka Nartana, Bhandika Nrityam, Carana Nrityam, Chindu, Gondali and Kolatam are described. In the first chapter the author discusses the differences between Marga and desi, tandava and lasya, Natya and nritta.
Perini is performed in honour of Lord Siva. Perini Lasysam refers to feminine grace while Perini tandava refers to vigorous male martial aspects.
The use of Conch, drums, bells, rhythmic syllables and the speed with which the dance is performed changes the atmosphere into a valour.This pure dance incorporates “Veera”, “Raudra” rasas of Bhagwan Shiva whose spirit is invoked by the dancers. This dance involves worship of the five elements (Prithvi, Jala, Teja, Vaayu, and Aakasha) and celebrating the mantra”Om”.
The Perini dance was about to vanish in the midst of time. It was revived by Dr.Nataraja Ramakrishna in the early 1970s by his scholarly efforts. He went through the Jayapa Senani’s Nritta Ratnavali, he noticed the mention of a ‘prerana’ dance, performed only by men to invoke Shiva. He did his research on agama texts, re-conceptualised the textual evidence of the dance form , studied the temple sculptures of Telangana especially the Ramappa temple of Warangal, along with the his vast knowledge of various dance forms, he revived Prerana as Perini.
According to late Dr. Nataraja Ramakrishna – The dance performed by women is called Komala Lasyam. The dance performed by men is Uddata Tandavam. But surprisingly men always were interested towards Lasya tradition of the dance and valor sentiment (vira rasa) was given fewer importances compared to sringara rasa.This might be the reason that in recent years such valour dance forms were vanishing in Bharat.
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