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mani madhava chakyar Quotes

Mani Madhava Chakyar Quotes

Date of Death: 1990-01-14 (Sunday, January 14th, 1990)



    • 'At least Bharatanatyam is now world famous, with thousands of new votaries. What about Koodiyattam?.....I have done what I can. It has not been easy. One has to sacrifice a lot to learn Koodiyattam. How many persons will be ready for it these days? Will there be an audience capable of imbibing it? ' - Mani Madhava Chakyar to famous Bharatanatyam dancer Rukmini Dev Arundale, while latter visitited Guru at his residence[1]
    • 'My own people condemned my action (performing Koothu and Kutiyattam outside the precincts of the temples), Once, after I had given performances at Vaikkom, they even thought about excommunicating me. I desired that this art should survive the test of time. That was precisely why I ventured outside the temple' - Guru about the difficulties he had faced from hardliners when he tok Koothu and Kutiyattam outside the temples and performing it for common man.[2]
    • 'When i say Abhinaya, oh, I can't do the abhinaya like what the great man did here yesterday' - Great Bharatanatyam dancer Balasaraswati next day after Chakyar's lecture-demonstration at Madras Music Academy in 1973.[3]
    • 'Mani Madhava Chakyar when he portrayed Arjuna on the first evening and Ravana on the second, showed himself a master of the expression of the eye' - Dr. V Raghavan, renowned scholar of Sanskrit dramaturgy, classical Indian dance and music, connoisseur of art and former director of Samskritaranga- Chennai.[4]
    • 'Mani Madhava Chakyar was the personification of all the greatness of this rich Indian classical art tradition' - Kapila Vatsyayan (leading scholar of classical Indian dance)[5]
    • 'He had his own style. He could convey his thoughts through expressions. His eye movement was superb!' Birju Maharaj- great Kathak dancer.[6]
    • 'the greatest eye-wizard of the world!' - Stella Kramrisch - Curator of Indian Art, Philadelphia Museum of Art, USA.[7]
    • 'No one is like the Emperor of Abhinaya- Mani Madhava Chakyar, and there won't be any' - Prof. Maria Christopher Byrski (first foreigner disciple of Guru and Kutiyattam), Department of Indology, Warsaw University[8]
    • 'his Netraabhinaya is simply incomparable' - Kapila Vatsyayan (leading scholar of classical Indian dance)[9]
    • 'Mani Madhava Chakyar's forte was Satwikabhinaya. Endowed with expressive eyes; that can speak a thousand moods and a countenance that can reflect the range of human emotions in its entirety, Mani Madhava Chakkiar was the master at work' - Mani Madhava Chakkyar: The Master at Work (film)[10]
    • 'Eyes, what an eloquent pair he has! He is able to express with them even the slightest difference in the mood' - L.S Rajagopalan (noted art critic)[11]
    • 'With a few movements of the eye, he could manifest the mountains, the ocean, the rivers, the moonlit valleys, torrential rain, the gait of the swan and the elephant, a tornado, the opening of the lotus flowers and a lot else. To see him do it was to know that he was a non-pareil' - P.T. Narendra Menon (noted art critic and poet)[12]
    • '(I got introduced to) the late and great Mani Madhava Cakyar's King Udayana in Svapnavasavadatta. In what may have been among his last performances on the public stage I was fortunate to see Sri Cakyar, who at an advanced age, literally threw away his walking stick as he entered the stage to become a sprightly royal lover pining away for his beloved Vasavadatta. At his home in Likkadi he demonstrated the nava rasas... Sri Cakyar vividly illustrated to me that kutiyattam acting has the power to transform even the oldest person into the character he portrays' - Prof. Farley P. Richmond (Expert on Indian theatre), Department of Theatre and Film Studies, University of Georgia.[13]
    • 'His eyes were the unrivaled wonder of Abhinaya' - P.T. Narendra Menon (connoisseur of art)[14]
    • 'Late Shri. Cakyar, was not just a skilled exponent and a capable teacher of Kutiyattam, his wisdom and depth of knowledge made him worthy of the title 'Acharya' ' - Dr. Prem Lata Sharma (noted Hindi writer and scholar of Indian arts and literature)[15]
    • 'His historic talent was backed up by extraordinary erudition. Behind his wizardry with the eyes lay sustained practice undertaken with devotion and discipline' - L.S Rajagopalan (noted art critic)[16]
    • 'To Guru Mani Madhava Chakyar, Kutiyattam was more than art, it was life itself' - Mani Madhava Chakkyar: The Master at Work (film) - Kavalam N. Panickar[17]
    • 'Mani Madhava Chakyar was performing sikhinisalabha... Butterflies fly all around. Some of them fell into the fire below. The anguish was reflected in the actor's eyes. Ha! There they come out without a burn! What a relief! They came again. The actor continued the performance. Only his eyes move: The audience was spellbound. They did not know that an hour has passed!' - About his world famous abhinaya of the shloka shikhinisalabha from Subhadradhananjayam.[18]
    • 'The depth of creativity of the author (Mani Madhava Chakyar) is evident from the introductory Shlokas (hymns in Sanskrit) itself ' - Dr. Prem Lata Sharma (noted Hindi writer and scholar of Indian arts and literature)[19]
    • 'Scholars of Paderevski Foundation who were fortunate enough to have witnessed the fragments of Swapnavasavadattam as performed by your splendid actors, were unanimous in their praise of the high cultural and aesthetic level of the Koodiyattam. It was a most enjoyable experience and the Paderevski Founadtion is proud to have co-sponsored the appearences of the Theatre in Northern India' - Paderewski Foundation (New York) Certificate (New Delhi, 1964) - First International recognition for Kutiyattam and the maestro.
    • '..I felt angry when I learnt that a great artist like Mani Madhava Chakyar was awarded a mere Padma Shri. A man of his artistic genius and erudition deserved to be decorated with the highest state honour' - RKG (Editor, The Illustrated Weekly, Columnist for Times of India)[20]
    • 'Has the Centre ever considered the merits of a phenomenal Kudiyattam exponent like Mani Madhav Chakkiyar - true genius?' - Leela Venkatraman- art critic, The Hindu [21]
    • 'for 90 years' - On asking how much years he had studied Kutiyattam. He was 90 years then.
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