The 2013 edition of the Natyanjali Dance festival will get underway on March 10, Sunday, the day of Sivaratri..
In Chidambaram, the home of this unique dance tribute to Lord Shiva where he is in the form of Lord Nataraja, the fest will run for 5 evenings.
This past week, teams of workers put up the backdrop set that was created as a mould on the stage that is in the eastern yard of the temple and worked round the clock to fix the illuminations and lightings and décor the space.
Thousands of people, devotees and rasikas will file into the temple on Sunday and being a holiday, thousands more will stream into the temple in the night when the pujas begin and run into dawn.
Here, on Sivaratri evening, the recitals go on well past midnight and end at about 4 a.m. the next day. On the other evenings, they start at 5.45 p.m. and end by about midnight.
Dancers from Tamil Nadu, different parts of India and from some corners of the world are featured here.
The Big Temple in Thanjavur will also be the venue for the dances starting March 10. Here too, the recitals will run till dawn beneath the gaze of the giant Nandi.
Similar dance festivals are being held in the temples dedicated to Lord Shiva at Thanjavur, Nagapattinam, Thiruvarur, Kumbakonam and other places.
The festivals are open to all.
<< Regular updates on the fest are posted on a blog at www.natyanjalidancefestival.blogspot.in >>