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In India, there are seven great styles of classical dancing. Bharata Natyam is one of the most ancient and most astonishing. It originated in Tamil Nadu. It is supposed to come from the fifth Veda (the Natya Veda), transmitted by Brahma to Bharata Muni. By order of Lord Shiva Nataraja, Tandu and Parvati would have taught Bharata Muni the masculine and feminine part of the dance. The holy man would have then put together a treaty: the Natya Shastra that was passed on from generation to generation..

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Bharata Natyam is composed of one part of pure dancing, the Nritta, and another part of expressive dancing, the Nritya. The Nritta is technical and rhythmic and only has a decorative purpose. As for the Nritya, it tells a story, conveys the meaning of a song through body movement and facial expression. That is what we call the Abhinaya.

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