The saga of epic love
Indira Gandhi National Centre for Arts (<g data-gr-id="38">IGNCA</g>) unveiled the first ever new-age multimedia presentation of The Gita Govinda, a 12th century Sanskrit poetry by Jayadeva on May 27. Jawhar Sircar, CEO, Prasar Bharati presided as the chief guest.
The project is an outcome of an extensive research spanning over two decades, on Gita Govinda. This was done under the supervision and expertise of Kapila <g data-gr-id="40">Vatsyayan</g>, a scholar of Gita Govinda for nearly fifty years.
She’s an internationally acknowledged authority and pioneer of inter and multi-disciplinary studies in the humanities, and arts. Pratapanand Jha, director, Cultural <g data-gr-id="52">Infomatics</g> Lab, executed the program and was in charge of the technology aspect of the presentation. The Gita Govinda consists of twelve chapters, further classified into twenty-four songs.
For this <g data-gr-id="71">presentation</g> <g data-gr-id="41">IGNCA</g> has selected six songs and presented them in six singing, six dance and six painting traditions. Gita Govinda as a religious text has a pan-Indian presence, with it being offered as sacred music at the temples of Kerala, Orissa, Assam among other states. Initially, Ranjit <g data-gr-id="42">Makkuni</g>, a researcher at Xerox PARC, USA led the research and design activities of the presentation.
Kapila Vatsyayan, Trustee, <g data-gr-id="49">IGNCA</g> Trust, expressing her delight towards the work said: “Gita Govinda is very close to my heart as I’ve devoted twenty years of my life researching and conceiving the content. Gita Govinda, the most luscious love story of Radha and Krishna could not have been explained better without this Multimedia presentation. The story is described at two levels, at the human level, it means the love of a man and a woman, at the divine level there <g data-gr-id="80">is</g> love and separation of the human and the divine.
In the terms of <g data-gr-id="63">multiplicity</g> of expressions, a single poem and just six verses could create an entire cosmic vision. Many artists have tried to interpret the text as it has several dimensions of meaning and expression”
The artistic genres represented in the presentation included paintings from <g data-gr-id="39">Jaur</g>, Mewar, Bundi, Jaipur, Basohli, Kangra and Orissa schools while the music traditions of classical Hindustani and Carnatic music. The dance styles included Bharatnatyam, Mohiniattam, Odissi, Manipuri and Kathak.
<g data-gr-id="65">Scholastic</g> interpretation given by <g data-gr-id="46">Vatsyayan</g> on the sublime meaning of the text on Gita Govinda has added value to the work. The concealed meaning, of the relationship between <g data-gr-id="47">jeevatma</g> and <g data-gr-id="48">paramatma</g>, portrayed in the poem as love play between Radha and Krishna, is elucidated in clear language by her.
Appreciating the project, Jawhar Sircar, chief executive officer, Prasar Bharti said: “This gives me immense pleasure to know that something like this has been done to re-live the Gita Govinda. It is a wonderful and a very innovative presentation of an ancient love story of Radha and Krishna.The paintings, songs and the music <g data-gr-id="77">has</g> done justice to the poetry.”
On the release, Chinmaya Gharekhan, President <g data-gr-id="43">IGNCA</g> Trust, expressed happiness at the release of the multimedia presentation. He said: “This is the second major academic work being released by <g data-gr-id="44">IGNCA</g> using the latest technology tool. Previously, a year ago. It had released an interactive multimedia presentation on the <g data-gr-id="66">millennium year old</g> Brihadeeswara in Tanjavur, Tamil Nadu.”