Smt. Jayashree Ramanathan is an accomplished Bharathanatyam artiste who possesses a multifaceted talent in the areas of dance, Nattuvangam and vocal support also. Inheriting these traits from a family full of musicians and dancers, Jayashree started her training in dance at a young age of nine under the expert tutelage of Smt. Sudharani Raghupathy’s Bharathalaya for ten years. She further honed her skills for another decade under the aegis of the Dhananjayans at their school of dance named Bharathakalanjali and even today takes an active part in their annual dance festivals. Jayashree was teaching dance at ‘The School’ run by the J.Krishamurthy Foundation, Chennai. She was associated with the Prof. Chandrasekar of M.S. University Baroda during her brief stay in Gujarat. She has accompanied great artistes like Smt. Vyjyanthimala Bali and the Dhananjayans extensively throughout USA for various performances. She has travelled to many countries including Europe, Singapore and Myanmar as a nattuvangam artiste for many renowned dancers such as Mythili Prakash, Meenakshi Srinivasan, Vidya Subramanian, Janaki Rangarajan, Ambika Kameshwar etc. Currently she is part of the senior faculty at Bharathanjali, engages in imparting regular dance lessons and supporting in the execution of individual performances by its students. She also lends Nattuvangam support to the students.
Nalina Madhivanan, one of the senior faculties at Bharathanjali is a Master of Fine Arts (M.F.A) from Kalaikaveri University. She has completed her Bachelor of Performing Arts (B.P.A) course from the Pondicherry University with distinction. She also holds a diploma in dance from the Bharathiyar Palkalaikoodam, Pondicherry. She has previously conducted dance classes at ‘Sathyasai Natyalaya’ for 7 years. Currently she handles the junior classes at Bharathanjali and also teaches dance theory.
Medha Hari, one of the senior most disciples of Smt. Anitha Guha is hailed as an upcoming Bharathanatyam artiste. She has been under the tutelage of her Guru since 1997 and had her arangetram (debut) in 2001. Medha is an empanelled artiste with the Indian Council for Cultural Relations (ICCR) and India World Cultural Forum (IWCF). Endowed with a wiry frame, she dances with lot of passion. She is a recipient of the ‘Lakshmi Viswanathan Endowment award’ from Sri Krishna Gana Sabha and ‘Nrithya Nakshathra’ by Maham Parampara in the year 2013. She was awarded the ‘Nrithya Pradarshanam’ by the Cleveland Thyagaraja Festival in April 2014. Her other awards for Best Dancer include – Indian Fine Arts (2008), Sur Singar Samsad (2009), Parthasarathy Swamy Sabha (2010), and Spirit of Youth series of The Music Academy - second (2013). She has given numerous solo and group performances all over India and abroad and has participated in pivotal roles in all of her Guru’s group productions. She was deeply involved in the choreography of Vana Virata Vijayam, her Guru’s latest choreographic venture. Medha also excels in academics and is a qualified Chartered Accountant.
The lissome and expressive Sathvikaa Shankar is regarded as one of Chennai's foremost young proponents of the classical art form of Bharatanatyam. She commenced her instruction in dance under the auspices of Smt Anitha Guha at the age of 6 and had her arangetram in 2003. Sathvikaa’s forte lies in Abhinaya and histrionic characterization. She is a recipient of the Balashree Award from the President of India, His Excellency Dr APJ Abdul Kalam in 2005. She has also been honoured with titles such as “Padma Bharathi”,“Nrithya Jyothi”, “Best Dancer” from Sri Krishna Gana Sabha, and “Bala Swarna Jwala”. She is an empanelled artiste with the Indian Council for Cultural Relations (ICCR). She has also played pivotal roles in all of her Guru’s productions.
Saathvika Rajamani was initiated into the art at the age of 6 under the able guidance of Smt.Anitha Guha and completed her Arangetram in 2005. She has played a variety of roles in her guru’s productions and has innumerable solo performances to her credit. Her sense of rhythm, footwork and characteristic maintenance of pace and tempo has been well appreciated. Saathvika is also currently pursuing a Bachelor’s degree in Biotechnology from SRM University as well as a bachelor of fine arts in Bharathanatyam from SASTRA University. She is a recipient of scholarships from CCRT and Bharath Kalachar. She has been part of the teaching faculty of Bharathanjali for six years now.
P.R. Venkatasubramanian learnt the finer intricacies of music under the eminent Harikatha exponent Late Needamangalam Sri Krishnamoorthy Bhagavathar. Starting his carrer as a simple harmonist to growing to a prominent Keyboard artiste with proven skills today, he has carved a niche for himself and revolutionalised Keyboard playing by bringing it into the field of classical music. He is not only a good soloist but also a specialist in accompanying for stalwarts in fields like Bharathanatyam, Hari Katha, Vaadhya Virndha, Folk Music, Devotional Music, Light Music and Bhajan concerts.
He is also a lyricist and a music composer of great repute. His compositions include more than 600 traditional numbers for Bharathanatyam,and over 100 dance ballets. He is also professionally trained under Late Needamangalam Sri Krishnamoorthy Bhagavathar in the special and rare art of Konnakkol which he often uses for composing the dance numbers and jathis.
For the last 15 years, he is a part of Bharathanjali playing a vital role of writing lyrics, scoring the music and directing the orchestral team for professional recordings for almost all their mega productions. His exclusive compositions and jathis are performed by students of this school in most of their individual and group performances in India and abroad. As a visiting faculty he conducts workshops, and advance theory sessions for the students.
Zakir Hussain hails from a traditional Muslim Family in South India. After graduating in fibre technology Thyagaraja campus in his home town of Salem, he chose to pursue his passion for Bharatha Natyam and left his family behind to move to Chennai. In Chennai, he fulfilled his lifelong dream of learning Bharathanatyam under Smt. Chitra Visweswaran. He also learned dance theory under Smt. Krishnaveni Lakshmanan of Kalakshetra, while in Chennai. He has travelled extensively and danced in many dance dramas conducted by Smt. Chitra Visweswaran. The President of India recognized his talent as a dancer and awarded him a senior scholarship in 1992 for 3 years. He has also received a scholarship from Kala Mandir Trust. Though a Muslim by birth, he possesses a deep understanding and knowledge of the Vedas, Agamas and Indian scriptures especially of the Vaishnavite tradition. He has done research on Panchatantra Agama, Vaikanasam and interpreted the ritualistic mudras into Bharathanatyam. His vast knowledge of epics like Mahabharata and Ramyana helped him conceptualize dance dramas such as Paanchali Sabadham and Seethayanam. He has also composed many original Tamil padams and Sabdhams.
Zakir trains young students of Bharathanjali in basic dance theory.
Master Shri Murugan Vajiravelu is from a yoga observing family. He has nearly 15 years of experience in teaching yoga through general classes and ‘Yoga Therapy’. He has been associated with ‘The Institute of Public Health’, ‘Training Institute of Department of Public Health’ as a guest yoga teacher from 2003 till last year. He also hosts a programme called ‘Dhiyana Yoga’ on DD Podhigai.