Malaysia’s first male bharatanatyam duo raring to dance

February 13th, 2011 - 3:17 pm ICT by IANS  

Ipoh (Malaysia), Feb 13 (IANS) Malaysia will have its first father-son duo of bharatanatyam dancers next Saturday, adding to the motley group of male exponents of this women-dominated dance form.

Dance exponent Santiago Samathanam is glad his 23-year-old son Vasanth is finally ready for his arangetram, the ceremonial first performance. Vasanth will be performing nine dances during the arangetram at the Ipoh Town Hall Feb 19.

It is a long wait for the father who has also been the son’s guru for the past 14 years.
Although they had performed together earlier, it would feel more meaningful after Vasanth’s graduation.

“With the graduation, Vasanth would be stepping into professional dancing. I am very happy that my son and I will be able to perform bharatanatyam professionally now,” said the 55-year-old Samathanam.

Vasanth, who is a mass communication diploma holder, had been under his father’s guidance since he was nine years old.

To prepare for his graduation, Vasanth has been practicing for at least seven hours a day.

Samathanam’s mission is not complete. Waiting in the wings are two daughters who are also studying bharatanatyam, The Star newspaper said Sunday.

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