The word Kathak comes from the original Sanskrit word "Kathakar" which means a storyteller. "Katha kahe so kathik kahave", which means "one who tells a story is a storyteller". A woman storyteller was known as "Kathika" & male storyteller was known as "KathakarThe Lucknow gharana also revealed Kathak performances by tawaifs, who themselves developed the art into a parallel refinement. They performed on lighter classical music like dadra, tappa or kajri. Under the tawaifs, Kathak involved more expressions termed as nakra or mischievous playfulness. It is a partially narrative dance form characterized by fast footwork (tatkar), spins (chakkar) and innovative use of bhav(expression) in abhinaya (acting). With time and history, it has developed into a highly refined system of rhythm and movement, capable of communicating complex human dynamics as well as abstract form and composition (Dutt, 2008). The hastamudras (hand gestures), the poses, and even the walk of the dancer further filter into this narrative and the whole feeling conveyed by the dancer. In light of dance therapy Kathak is a complete dynamic theatre. The dancer depends on their ghungroos (dancing bells) for balancing inchakkars (spins), facial muscle for abhinaya (expression), proper position of arms and feet and also mudras, etc. Kathak is a stimulus that affects the body in its entirety. The fast footwork helps to release anger and tension. The thaat performed in this dance form includes the therapeutic torso movements and it is now used for the treatment purpose also as a form of physical exercise. Kathak signifies the importance of dance and is the revolutionary new way to communicate
Mudras & Self-Discovery
Kathak is not just a dance, but also a journey of self-discovery. Kathak communicated something beyond this world…from its stories to its poetry, from its rhythm to its virtuosity, from its depth to its heights. Mudras have definitely healing powers. By stretching or bending the fingers or exerting pressure on fingertips or palms, unbalanced energies in body and mind, causing diseases, can be balanced, tensions can be released. By practicing Mudras properly, blocked energy can be released and flow freely. Hereby accumulated toxins are removed and the bodily system is purified and harmonized
Kathak dance: Inspired by nature
A peacock dancing to the rhythm of the monsoon rain is just another Kathak dancer enjoying nritta or rhthym ! Raindrops give the taal and bol and the elegant performer follows nature's beat. Taking its cue from nature, Kathak ingrained rhythm in its very existence. Expressing joyous oneness with nature to worshipping the Creator, Kathak advanced to royal courts. It is a complete world of emotional intellectual and spiritual expression.