A Computational Model for Bharata Natyam Choreography
Sangeeta Jadhav, S.S Dempo College of Commerce and Economics, Panaji, Goa India.firstname.lastname@example.orgSasikumar, CDAC, Mumbai, India.email@example.com
Indian Classical dance has been the slowest to adopt technology and although choreography is mainly a domain of creativity, computers can help a lot to ease this especially for rhythmically oriented intricate footwork,
and thecomplementary movements of other limbs of the body. The main objective of this paper is to identify and classify the variousangalakshanas of Bharata Natyam. An angalakshanas in Bharata Natyam refers to classification of elementary body movementslike head, eye, neck, hands and leg movements. The research aims at a well organised classification of the angalakshanas alongwith identification of various constraints on their co- occurrences and sequencing. The constraints may be physical, aesthetic or preferential and would be identified through literature study and machine learning from databases of existing dance repositoriesand training videos. The work will be useful to enhance the learning/teaching of Bharata Natyam (and other dance forms) andalso for animated choreography.
1. Introduction -
To develop a computational model of Bharata Natyam covering angalakshanas and talas (arhythmic cycle of beats with an ebb and flow of varioustypes of intonations resounded on a percussive instrument).Any dance form can be conceptually decomposed into someconstituent base movements involving specific body parts,and norms for combining them. The combinations areconstrained by physical constraints, aesthetic constraints, preferential constraints, etc. Treatises like
codify such constraints and rules in a human understandableform. This research attempts to model these in acomputational framework, using practical experience andexisting literature. This would help evolving better teaching programs, better understanding of the dance form, enhancedability to compare one dance form to others in India andabroad, use ICT in composing and designing dance programmes, and so on.The basic methodology proposed would be to study andtabulate the various
, relate them to tala – a beatcycle – to study constraints and preferences, and develop amachine learning model which can generate/criticmovement sequences. We propose to use artificialintelligence techniques such as neural networks, constraint programming, evolutionary programming and heuristicsearch in this process.
1.2 Structure of Bharata Natyam:
Bharata Natyam is one of the most ancient of all the Indian Classical dance styles.Although there is no formal notation available for the danceform, it is a highly formalized dance as described
in ancienttexts. This dance is known for its grace, purity, tenderness andsculpturesque
poses. Bharata Natyam is based on the precepts of among others - Bharata's
- to mention the most well known theorists of the dance. From the moment the danseuse enters and until
dancer leaves the stage, dancer has to regulate their
movements tomusical accompaniment in strict accordance with the rules of the dance form.
There are two major aspects to this form of
(rhythmic dance movements) and
(representational dance). Although there is no clear demarcation between the two this research will restrict itself to Nritta or pure dance movements. Nritta is divided into
- balanced composition of handand leg movements;
- different combination of Karna;
- postures with hand gestures. The body limbsare classified as:
(main body parts);
(minor limbs); and
(features of the face).
are supposed to move in unison with
is a classification of elementary body movementswhich are as follows- Head movements–
; Neck movements -
a; Eye movements -
;Leg movements –
; Hand movements –
. Some of them are as follows:While performing, a dancer can use one
likeonly the eye for example for a beat or use all the
e.g. eye, neck, head, legs, handssimultaneously for the same beat. Of course, not allcombinations are physically possible. Some are aestheticallynot recommended. Similarly, the sequence of angalakshanasfrom one beat to next also has such constraints governingthem. This is the focus of the research we discuss here.
2. Related work in this area:
Although many research paperscan be found dedicated to Western dance styles like ballet andfoxtrot, very few can be found for Indian Classical Dance.here seem to be few studies related to creating computerizedchoreography for any Indian classical dance. However thefollowing papers and articles are related to Indian classicaldance with emphasis on animation: Soumyadeep Paul, et al, describes in their paper about an off-site coach who useslow band-width joint-motion data and can instruct studentswho are even geographically far away. This application does
(IJCSIS) International Journal of Computer Science and Information Security,Vol. 8, No. 7, October 2010231http://sites.google.com/site/ijcsis/ISSN 1947-5500