A dancer’s dialogue with Tanjavur Brihadeeswarar Temple Architecture

The Tanjavur Brihadeeswarar Temple built by Raja Raja Chozhan strikes any person through it’s splendour and the “bhava” (state of mind) that it evokes in the person who experiences the aura of the temple. The sheer arrogance and grandeur of its scale and proportion evokes humility within any one. This short film produced by world renowned Architect & Urban Designer, Sheila Sri Prakash, strives to link the “raga” (melody) that creates a backdrop for the temple with the “thala” (rhythm) that it reverberates.

Speaking about the film, Ar Sheila Sri Prakash said, “Both Bharathanatyam and Indian Architecture were born out of  temples in India. Just as ports would globally be the fulcrum around which civilization would grow, in India we find that temples provided the requisite impetus to socio economic sustainability. Kanchipuram, Thanjavur, Benares,.Vijayanagaram are examples of the temple nodes that  spawned  civilization and culture. The focus of growth was spiritual, not materialistic. Urban design strived towards holistic growth of an individual, as well as a family-centric society. The Vedas explicitly enumerated the fundamentals of living and the temples moulded the lifestyle and priorities of the people. Rulers of ancient India vied with each other to inculcate art, music, dance, poetry and literature amidst temples and fortresses. It is this acknowledgement of non violence as a way of life that differentiated the ancient Indian civilizations from others of the same period. As Bharathanatyam has played a very important role in the development of my persona and my growth as a designer, I wish to establish the synergy between dance – my soul – and architecture my -nerve centre”.