Esplanade Presents


Kalaa Utsavam Dance Stage Alumni - Set 1

Marutha Kiligal, Shresthi Arts, Natyaveda (Singapore)

26 Nov 2023, Sun, 7pm, 7.15pm & 7.30pm


(Intermission: None)

DBS Foundation Outdoor Theatre at Esplanade

This event is over.


Marutha Kiligal by Guru A Meenalochani and students (7 – 7:15pm)

Marutha Kiligal, which creatively refers to the womenfolk of agricultural land, aims to tell the story of harvesting from the start till the end through traditional Tamil folk dances with a touch of classical dance as well. The performance will begin by depicting how farmers go about preparing the land for harvest, and will take the audience through the process of sowing the seeds, irrigating the land, weeding and finally harvesting.


The performance begin with a celebratory dance, kummiyaatam. Following this,is the karagaatam, where dancers balance a pot on their heads. The performance continues with the poikaal kuthiraiyaatam and ends with the mayilaatam, the dance of peacocks.


Advaitha by Shresthi Arts (7:15 – 7:30pm)

This showcase compares the appearance and divine acts of Shiva and Parvati present within the same form. The oneness of Shiva and Parvati symbolises the male and female principle that cannot be separated. It conveys the unity of opposites in the universe.


Shiva’s distinctive appearance is unique and includes the river Ganga, moon, third eye, tiger skin, damaru drum and the serpent. Serpents often take the role of powerful protagonists such as Nagaraja who abides on Shiva’s neck, the five headed Shesha as Vishnu’s bed and even as accessories for Parvati. Serpents represents our kundalini energy and is revered as a divine force.


Natyaveda by Usharani Maniam Dance Academy (7:30 – 7:45pm)

This performance seamlessly blends two distinct dance forms: mallari and thillana. Mallari is characterised by its invocatory nature, featuring a unique and vibrant choreography filled with gracefully swift movements that encompass a wide range of motions, forms, speeds, and patterns. In contrast, the thillana portion of the performance showcases exceptional artistic prowess, emphasising precision in rhythm, timing, and synchronisation. Additionally, the charanam segment eloquently portrays the cosmic Dance of Lord Shiva, beautifully capturing the essence of the syllables emanating from his damaru drum as he dances.


No tickets will be issued. Seats are available on a first-come, first-served basis.  

Things to Note:
Accessibility Advisory: We provide a range of access services and relaxed performances for patrons with access needs. For wheelchair-accessible seats, please call Esplanade Customer Experience at 6828 8377 for assistance. Concessions for Persons With Disabilities (PWDs) and up to one accompanying companion are available. | View our accessibility guide
Artist Information

Guru A Meenalochani

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Guru A Meenalochani runs her own dance school, Makoolam Kalaikoodam of Bharatanatyam and Tamil Traditional Folk Arts classes. She completed her Diploma in bharatanatyam and arangetram under SIFAS and currently is a part-time tutor in SIFAS. She has been giving numerous classical and folk performances in Singapore at temples, community programmes, schools and corporate events.  

In this performance, Guru A Meenalochani will be accompanied by student dancers Naveena Vinodthini, Justina Steven, Aiswariya, Davina and Malavika. 

Usharani Maniam

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Usharani Maniam is a graduate of the Bhaskar’s Academy of Dance. Early in her career, she was recognised as a child prodigy and received a gold medal award from the Mayor of Penang. Having performed before foreign dignitaries, at temples, on television and at special events, she soon became a household name. This culminated in her being awarded the title “Jewel of Dancers” in 1971 by the Indian Movie News Club. She was also part of Singapore’s National Dance Company. 


As a dance tutor and choreographer, Usharani came into her own, preparing students from Singapore’s Primary and Secondary schools for participation in the Singapore Youth Festival, with many of the items being awarded Gold. She has also taught in a number of community centres. Usharani Maniam had choreographed many dance dramas for children’s programmes on television. She had also choreographed and presented five productions: Shivautsavam (2000), Shakuntala (2005), Aalaya Maha Utsavam (2015), Natpu (2018) and recently Nava Nartanam (2022) at Esplanade. For her outstanding contributions, Smt. Usharani was awarded the following titles: 


Jewel of Dancers by the Indian Movie News Club, Nritya Kala Nipuna by Nrityalaya Aesthetics Society, Natya Kala Mani by Sri Bala Subramaniam Temple, Singa Gama Award-in recognition of Life Achievement/Contribution to Classical Indian Dance, 20-year Long Service Award by the People’s Association and most recently, the title Natya Archariya Mani by Apsaras Arts

Date & Time

26 Nov 2023, Sun


DBS Foundation Outdoor Theatre at Esplanade
Marutha Kiligal by Guru A Meenalochani and students


DBS Foundation Outdoor Theatre at Esplanade
Advaitha by Shresthi Arts


DBS Foundation Outdoor Theatre at Esplanade
Natyaveda by Usharani Maniam Dance Academy

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