Chidambaram (Natyanjali) Dance Festival
Venue: Nataraja Temple, Chidambaram (Tamil Nadu)
Duration: Five Days
Highlights: Dance performances by eminent dancers from all over the country, with the Nataraja temple providing a magnificent background.
Chidambaram Dance Festival or Natyanjali Festival is held at the holy city ofChidambaram, known as the ‘city of the Cosmic Dancer’ (Lord Shiva) is located 245 Kms away from Chennai. The ancient Nataraja temple of Chidambaram pays special tribute to Lord Nataraja- the dancing Lord Shiva who is worshipped as the universal dancer by all the artists in the country. Performing at the dance festival is considered to be a great honor by the classical dancers. The magnificent gold roofed temple situated in the middle of the town has a bronze image of Nataraja in a dancing pose (thandavam). This is known throughout the world as the most perfect synthesis in metal art. The temple has carved pillars depicting Lord Nataraja in 108 poses of Bharathanatya classical dance in the eastern tower. Participation: During the festival time leading dancers from all parts of India congregate and dance in the temple as an offering to Lord Shiva. Many dancers think it is a blessing to be able to perform their ‘arangettam’ (first stage performance) in the vicinity of the sanctum of Lord Nataraja in Chidambaram.The Natyanjali dance festival is an aesthetic expression of the rich dance culture of India.