- Series: Aiis-Arce Series of Ethnomusicology
- Publisher: South Asia Books; Har/Cas edition (September 1993)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 8120407059
- ISBN-13: 978-8120407053
- Product Dimensions: 1.2 x 6.5 x 9.8 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.7 pounds
- Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars See all reviews (1 customer review)
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #15,780,904 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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The Music of Bharata Natyam (Aiis-Arce Series of Ethnomusicology) Hardcover – September, 1993
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Dr John Higgins (1939-1984) was an American musician and musicologist. After his training in Western and Indian Karnataka music in the Wesleyan University, he spent years in India furthering his study of Karnataka music. He was a unique non-Indian Karnataka music concert artist. As a child, he was inspired by Srimati Balasaraswati and her Bharatanatyam dance.
This book is the author's dissertation for his PhD. It is the analytical study of the Bharanatyam music repertoire. Music is an indispensable element to the dance, and each composition used for the dance has many well-balanced components of musical, poetical, and theatrical elements. Because the technical aspects of the dance have dominated over the last thousands of years, it is the technical aspects that have intrigued scholars more than the music repertoire. Dr Higgins' study is very important because it is one of the rare books that analyze the music of Bharatanatyam.
The knowledge of this author is amazing and incredible, he is truly a scholar. There is a section in the book that analyzes many of the music pieces. He translates the Sanskrit names to English, tells the story in the song, the source (usually scriptures like the Ramayanam), and how it is celebrated in the modern times by orthodox Hindus.
There is a chapter on thillana, javali, and sloka, which are optional in a dance performance, and a lengthy Index, Bibliography, and a section on meanings of Sanskrit words used in the book.