This book is the result of 7,000 kilometres of travel through North India and five years of untiring field work, investigation and research. The mission was to understand the existence of Kathak villages and what Kathak and ‘Kathak Lok’ represented. Going from village to village, seeing Kathak-s dance in temples, meeting Maharajas, dancers, scholars and swamis, the authors peeled layer upon layer of history. Bit by bit facts revealed themselves, slowly lifting the curtain to a clear and accurate picture. The authors unearth little-known facts of pre-Christian era roots of Kathak and its role in propagating and preserving dharma, over the centuries, which continues as a living tradition today. This book will shatter many popular perceptions—such as the Mughal origins of Kathak or the belief that Kathak is the dance of the courtesans.
About the Author
Dr. Shovana Narayan
Dr Shovana Narayan is India’s most eminent and venerated Kathak Guru-performer-choreographer but she has also served in the civil services, Indian Audit and Accounts till her retirement. An MSc in Physics, two MPhil degrees and a DLitt (HC), she is an educationist and a research scholar who has served in prestigious academic institutions. She has been decorated by the GoI with the Padmashri, the central Sangeet Natak Akademi award, Parishad Samman and Rashtriya Samman besides being a recipient of over 40 national and international awards. She has also authored over 16 books, several research papers and more than 300 articles.
An Indian Administrative Service officer for over 30 years, Geetika Kalha has done extensive fieldwork in Northwest India to promote the revival, documentation and dissemination of art and culture. With a background in history, Kalha is now a writer and a consultant who specializes in rural tourism, museums and cultural interpretation. An avid traveller, birder, painter she also leads an NGO that provides underground wastewater management systems in villages. She is presently working on her next book.