Abhinaya Dance Company

Love Exquisite

(1999, Adapted 2015)

Sun. June 7 3:00pm
Cowell Theater
Tickets: $20-$25 General Admission

Presented by Abhinaya Dance Company (duration 90 minutes)


This performance of Love Exquisite was made possible in part by the generous support of the Phyllis C. Wattis Foundation.


Abhinaya Dance Company of San Jose will present Love Exquisite using Bharatanatyam, the classical dance of S. India, to interpret love poetry from ancient times to the present. Indian composers have visualized the Supreme Being not just as a Divine Power but also as a friend and a lover. The myriad emotions stirred by love including descriptions of desire with abandon, of grief from separation, and of anger at the lover’s indifference, are all depicted through the language of gestures and dramatic mime of Bharatanatyam. The company under Artistic Director Mythili Kumar is renowned for its innovative performances since 1980.


The Abhinaya Dance Company of San Jose was founded by its Artistic Director Mythili Kumar in 1980, to present innovative and professional quality performances of South Indian classical dance. To date, Abhinaya has staged over 30 original dance productions and is known for its adherence to tradition as well as its multi-cultural collaborations. The company has appeared several times in the San Francisco Ethnic Dance Festival. Abhinaya has been awarded several grants from the National Endowment for the Arts and from state and city agencies. In August 2010, Abhinaya celebrated its 30th Anniversary. Website: www.abhinaya.org; email: abdanceco@gmail.com


Mythili Kumar, Artistic Director & Choreographer

An accomplished artist, Mythili Kumar performed extensively in India before moving to the U.S. in 1978. Her artistic ability and the high quality of her dance choreography have been recognized in the U.S where she has been awarded several Choreographer's Fellowships from the NEA. Mythili Kumar has taught at Stanford University and San Jose State University, and currently teaches a fall semester course at University of California at Santa Cruz. She was honored by World Arts West with a Lifetime Achievement Award in 2010 and received a “Sustained Achievement Award” by the Bay Area Isadora Duncan Award committee in, 2011.

Rasika Kumar, Associate Artistic Director, Dancer and Choreographer

Rasika Kumar has been hailed as “among the best of this second generation of Indian dancers.” Rasika learned Bharatanatyam from her mother Mythili Kumar and continued her training under several renowned teachers in India. Since 2005 Rasika has been a featured soloist, principal dancer, and choreographer for many of the company’s season concerts. She received the Arts Council/Silicon Valley Performing Arts Fellowship in 2008, Her choreography has been featured in several prestigious venues including the San Francisco Ethnic Dance Festival. In 2011 Rasika’s collaborative rhythmic arrangement with Franco Imperial of San Jose Taiko garnered the two companies an Isadora Duncan Award.

Orchestra Bios

Mythili Kumar (nattuvangam)

Mythili Kumar, Artistic Director of Abhinaya Dance Company will lead the orchestra playing the cymbals and vocalizing rhythmic phrases (the art of nattuvangam).


Shri. Gomathy Nayagam (Vocals)

Gomathy Nayagam started learning Carnatic music and trained under Guru B. Rajam Iyer. He has a Masters Degree in Music from Madras University. He has given several vocal concerts in India and Abroad including, USA, Singapore, Canada and France. He has finished his VIII Grade theory of Western Music and is the Certificate holder from Trinity College of Music, London. He has received prestigious awards and laurels in India. He is a sought after artist for senior dancers in India. As an accompanying singer to these senior dancers, he has travelled all over India and abroad.

Shri. Sakthivel Muruganandhan (Mridangam)

Sakthivel Muruganandham is a disciple of Sri. Mayavaram G. Somasundaram and Sr. Thiruvaur Bhakthavatsalam. He had special training for dance under Sri. M. Balachandar. He is a leading miridangist in India who accompanies famous dancers like Alarmel Valli, Priyadarsini Govind and others in India and abroad.

Shri. N. Sigamani (Violin)

Sri. Sigamani received his basic training from his father Sri. Alandur S. Natarajan, an accompanied violinist. He has participated in most of the leading music and dance festivals in India and abroad. He has been performing as a violin accompanist to Bharata Natyam dance for over 25 years. He has won awards from major music organizations. He is a Honorary Citizen of Baltimore, Maryland, USA.

Shri. Sankarapillai Sunilkumar: (Flute)

Sunilkumar is a graduate of Govt. Music College in Chennai. He was trained under flute vidwan “Kalaimamani” Sri. T.S. Sankaran. He is a soloist of great promise and has accompanied and accompanies many of India’s leading artists, traveling with them in India and abroad.

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