KATHAK , classical dance form
KATHAK is one of the 8th classical dance forms . The origin of KATHAK is traditionally from traveling bards of ancient northern Indian known as KATHAKARS . The narrator of a story is called KATHAKAR in Sanskrit . This dance form which narrates a story through the expressions and body movements is known as KATHAK . It originated within Hindu Temples as portraying the epic tales like MAHABHARATA and RAMAYANA .
The roots of this dance form trace back to Sanskrit Hindu text on performing arts called ‘ NATYA SHASTRA ‘ written by Bharata Muni . It was during the Mughal era ; in 16th century that KATHAK received Royal patronage and was performed in the courts to entertain the Royals . During this period , KATHAK received elements of fusion from other dance forms like the Persian Dance .
KATHAK DANCERS tell various stories through their hand movements and extensive footwork , their facial expressions and their body movements . KATHAK is unique in having both Hindu and Muslim Gharanas and includes Urdu Ghazals also .
The schools of this dance form , ” KATHAK ” is known as GHARANAS . Three specific forms of this genre that is three Gharanas which mostly differ in emphasis given to footwork versus acting , are more famous namely , the Jaipur Gharana , the Banaras Gharana and the Lucknow Gharana .