Five classical dances of India are considered to be the mystic manifestation of the metaphysical elements of nature. Elaborate.

Published: May 1, 2016

The five classical dances of India are considered to be the mystic manifestation of the metaphysical elements of nature (Panchatatva) in the human body. These include Odissi (element of water), Kuchipudi (element of earth), Mohiniattam (element of air), Bharatnatyam (element of fire) and Kathakali (element of sky or aether).
Bharatanatyam Originated in Tamil Nadu. Siva as Nataraja, the Lord of Dance is depicted in various dance forms.
Kuchipudi is of Andhra Pradesh. Kuchipudi comprises pure dance, mime and histrionics but it is the use of speech that distinguishes Kuchipudi’s presentation as dance drama.
Kathakali Evolved from many social and religious theatrical forms of Kerala. This dance form is a blend of dance, music and acting and dramatizes stories, which are mostly adapted from the Indian epics.
Odissi is known as the oldest dance form of India on the basis of archaeological evidences.  It is characterized by various Bhangas (Stance), which involves stamping of the foot and striking various postures as seen in Indian sculptures.
Mohiniyattam is a classical dance form from Kerala.It is considered a very graceful form of dance meant to be performed as solo recitals by women.
The term Mohiniyattam comes from the words “Mohini” meaning a woman who enchants onlookers and “aattam” meaning graceful and sensuous body movements. The word “Mohiniyattam” literally means “dance of the enchantress”.

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