The Most Famous Bharatanatyam Dancer, Ranked

Choose the dancer you think is the most famous!

Author: Gregor Krambs
Updated on Jun 20, 2024 07:35
Ranking the most famous Bharatanatyam dancers can provide enthusiasts of the dance form with a unique snapshot of excellence within the field. This classical Indian dance form, known for its grace, expression, and technical precision, has numerous practitioners who have each contributed uniquely to its evolution. A ranked list aims to highlight these contributions, showcasing a range of talents and encouraging a deeper appreciation among fans and newcomers alike. By participating in the voting process, users have the opportunity to support their favorite dancers and help shape the current landscape of Bharatanatyam popularity. This dynamic interaction not only fosters a community of engaged followers but also keeps the list reflective of the current opinions and trends within the Bharatanatyam community. Your vote plays an integral role in celebrating the dedication and artistry of these dancers.

Who Is the Most Famous Bharatanatyam Dancer?

  1. 1

    Padma Subrahmanyam

    Renowned for her research in Bharatanatyam and her unique style, integrating ancient dance forms based on the Natya Shastra.
    • Research Focus: Natya Shastra
  2. 2

    Alarmel Valli

    An acclaimed dancer known for her fluidity and expressiveness in Bharatanatyam, blending traditional and innovative approaches.
    • Style: Blends traditional and innovative approaches
  3. 3

    Leela Samson

    A celebrated dancer and choreographer, known for her technical virtuosity and deep emotive performances in Bharatanatyam.
    • Roles: Former director of Kalakshetra
  4. 4

    Sudha Chandran

    An inspirational figure, she overcame a personal tragedy to become one of the most respected Bharatanatyam dancers.
    • Inspiration: Overcame adversity to excel in dance
  5. 5

    Yamini Krishnamurthy

    An eminent Bharatanatyam dancer, celebrated for her dynamic performances and contribution to Indian classical dance.
    • Contribution: Pioneering performances in Bharatanatyam
  6. 6

    Rukmini Devi Arundale

    A revolutionary figure in Indian classical dance, particularly Bharatanatyam, and the founder of Kalakshetra Foundation in Chennai.
    • Contribution: Revitalized and popularized Bharatanatyam globally
  7. 7

    Priyadarsini Govind

    A distinguished Bharatanatyam dancer known for her meticulous technique and expressive storytelling.
    • Technique: Meticulous and expressive
  8. 8

    Sonal Mansingh

    A veteran in Bharatanatyam, she is celebrated for her ability to incorporate philosophical and social themes into her performances.
    • Themes: Philosophical and social
  9. 9

    Mrinalini Sarabhai

    A pioneer in Indian classical dance, she was instrumental in bringing a global recognition to Bharatanatyam.
    • Legacy: Global recognition for Bharatanatyam
  10. 10

    Mallika Sarabhai

    A prominent Bharatanatyam dancer, known for her creativity and social activism through dance.
    • Activism: Uses dance for social change

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About this ranking

This is a community-based ranking of the most famous Bharatanatyam dancer. We do our best to provide fair voting, but it is not intended to be exhaustive. So if you notice something or dancer is missing, feel free to help improve the ranking!


  • 222 votes
  • 10 ranked items

Voting Rules

A participant may cast an up or down vote for each dancer once every 24 hours. The rank of each dancer is then calculated from the weighted sum of all up and down votes.

Additional Information

More about the Most Famous Bharatanatyam Dancer

Padma Subrahmanyam
Rank #1 for the most famous Bharatanatyam dancer: Padma Subrahmanyam (Source)
Bharatanatyam is a classical dance form from Tamil Nadu, India. It has a rich history and deep cultural roots. This dance is known for its grace, purity, and expressions. Bharatanatyam combines music, rhythm, and mime. It tells stories through hand gestures, facial expressions, and intricate footwork.

The origins of Bharatanatyam date back to ancient temples. Dancers performed in front of deities as an act of devotion. Over time, it moved from temples to courts and then to the stage. The dance has evolved, but it still holds its traditional essence.

A Bharatanatyam performance is a visual treat. The dancer wears a colorful costume. It usually includes a sari, jewelry, and flowers in the hair. The costume enhances the beauty of the dance. The dancer’s feet are adorned with bells. These bells, called ghungroos, add rhythm to the dance.

The dance form has a specific structure. A performance starts with an invocation. The dancer seeks blessings from the gods, the guru, and the audience. The performance then moves through various pieces. Each piece has a different mood and theme. Some pieces are slow and expressive. Others are fast and rhythmic.

The dancer uses hand gestures, called mudras, to convey meaning. Each gesture has a specific significance. The eyes and facial expressions play a crucial role. They express emotions and tell the story. The footwork is intricate and precise. It follows the beat of the music.

The music for Bharatanatyam is classical Carnatic music. It includes vocal and instrumental pieces. The mridangam, a drum, sets the rhythm. Other instruments like the violin and flute add melody. The music and dance are in perfect harmony.

Learning Bharatanatyam takes years of practice. Students start at a young age. They learn the basic steps and gestures first. As they progress, they learn more complex pieces. A good dancer must have dedication, discipline, and passion.

Bharatanatyam has gained worldwide recognition. Many dancers perform on international stages. They spread the beauty of this dance form across the globe. Workshops and classes are held in many countries. This helps keep the tradition alive.

The dance form has also seen innovation. Some dancers blend traditional Bharatanatyam with other styles. This creates a fusion that appeals to modern audiences. Yet, the core elements remain unchanged.

Bharatanatyam is not just a dance. It is a way of life. It teaches discipline, patience, and respect for tradition. It connects the dancer to their roots and culture. It is a journey of self-discovery and expression.

In conclusion, Bharatanatyam is a beautiful and intricate dance form. It has a rich history and cultural significance. The dance tells stories, conveys emotions, and captivates audiences. It is a timeless art that continues to inspire and enchant.

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