Rare interview of Uday Shankar

Uday_Shankar_YT

Thanks to Swarup, who brought to my attention, we have a rare interview of the dancer Uday Shankar shot in the 70’s for Doordarshan. This was supposedly re-telecast in DD Bharati recently. The interview is conducted by Shombhu Mitra, the theatre personality.

The interview starts with usual questions of how he started dancing and the influence of Anna Pavlova. While talking about Shiva’s Nataraja icon (timestamp 14:00), Uday Shankar explains the dynamics and gives us a intimate picture of how he developed his unique “Uday Shankar style” of dance. [I dont think the interview was scripted as the close up shows Uday Shankar feeling challenged and bit surprised when Shombhu Mitra asks him to demonstrate when Uday Shankar expressed a few seconds ago his disability to show the full movements!] It is indeed fascinating to see him demonstrate the arm movement and his child like excitement that pops up when Shombhu Mitra mentions about his institution in Almora and his movie “Kalpana”. It would be an understatement to say that these were very close to his heart.

The last word about this interview is how he had to school his troupe on etiquette and table manners. Discipline in an art institution is “most important” as he says

Look at yourself so that people can look at you and like your country.

Watch the full video below:

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