The Credo of a Dancer

New Delhi, 1960. Photo by Marilyn Silverstone,
courtesy - Magnum Photos, New York

Chennai is the hub of Carnatic music and Bharatanatyam and a multitude of related classical and folk-art systems, not to mention a rich culture of theatre. It is absolutely essential to create systematic archives of a cultural order that dates back centuries, so that future generations can trace the origins and development in an organized manner. Through well-researched and aesthetically designed exhibitions and events, MOPA aims to place South Indian culture on the larger map of world culture

1965 New York, photo by Pete Peters

Balasaraswati Institute of Performing Arts is a branch of Bala Music and Dance, USA. Its main goal is to preserve and propagate Padma Vibhushan awardee, Tanjavur Balasaraswati's style of music and dance, a style that has encompassed 9 generations of hereditary practitioners of the art and one that is alive and active to date.

Drawn largely from the vast treasure house of archives carefully preserved by Balasaraswati's family over the decades, this exhibition is MOPA's maiden curatorial venture, a collaborative effort with Balasaraswati Institute of Performing Arts. It will be on view at various venues in Chennai and other cities in India, spanning Balasaraswati's birth centenary year, 2018-19. It aims to showcase the life and art of an artiste who has left her imprint on dance for all time, with an engaging selection of photographs, articles, press clippings and vintage audio-visual excerpts. Also on display are rare personal effects belonging to Balasaraswati.

All photographs of T Balasaraswati shown on this website have been provided by Balasaraswati Institute of Performing Arts.