Most Indians move abroad to make wealth. But only few of those will give up their lucrative jobs and dedicate to arts of India. Prasanna Kasthuri is one of those rare personalities, who sacrificed his IT job to devote fulltime to Indian dance and music in USA. He is affectionately referred to as Guruji.
Guruji Prasanna Kasthuri, who created new record by dancing 24-hours marathon in 1986, has contributed to help build a soft power of Indian brand abroad since 1994. He has promoted India’s performing arts projects in USA, which introduced India’s heritage and culture to Western audiences. He and his wife Seema Kasthuri introduced Kannadiga’s great literature wealth such as Kuvempus’ Beral ge koral, Masti avara chikka kathegalu, Pu.ti.na’s Gokula Nirgamana,” and hundreds of compositions of Dasa and Sharana traditions to forefront. He showcased ancient dramas such as – Sanskrit dramatist Shoodraka’s “Mruchchakatika”, Saint Tulsi Das ji’s – “Tulsi Ramayan”, Tamil poet Illango Adigals’ “Silappadikkaram”, Tagore’s “Chandalaika”, Aurobindo’s “Savitri” and Padmavibhushana Sriranga – “Kattale-Belaku”. Guruji was invited to perform in reputed AKKA sammelana in 2008, 2010, 2012 and 2018. He has curated 14 International dance festivals and 9 music festivals encouraging the arts and artists from India in USA.
In 2022, Guruji Prasanna Kasthuri brought “Bharat Ki Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav” to St. Louis, USA, and engaged thousands of Indians to celebrate 75 years of India’s Independence through the patriotic dance-drama-theatrical presentation called – “SAMARPAN – Saga of Indian freedom Struggle”. He engaged hundreds of people to act, dance, sing in this Indian patriotic theatrical production in USA on August 13th, 2022, at reputed Blanchet Touhill Auditorium, St. Louis, USA. It was watched by thousands in-person and online.
“Samarpan” is an artistic (dance, music, drama) rendition of the Indian freedom struggle against British colonial rule. Planning of this production took 5 years of hard work. This was conceptualized, written, and directed by American based artist – Guruji Prasanna Kasthuri, the Artistic Director of Soorya Performing Arts, in St. Louis. Missouri State, USA. This production is unique because it focuses on the reason, effects, and solution to the colonial aggression on Indian soil. It depicts events beginning from the 16th century, marking the arrival of the East India Company, weaving its way through the resistances in North-South, East-West, every part of India, culminating with the events that led to freedom in 1947. It reminds us of the not-to-be forgotten sacrifices of the brave men and women who fought valiantly to get India out of the shackles of British rule. This 4-hour long dance-music-theatre production is a glimpse into history like never before!
Samarpan is in 7 languages, based on the places of revolutions happened across India. It has 120 dancers, drama artists, musicians, and technicians. It’s recorded by veteran music director Tirumale Srinivasan. More than 34 scenes from the depths of History are showcased in this 4.5-hour long production.
This production was an eye opener for Americans with information such as 2 million (20 Lakh) Indian soldiers waged war for Great Britain in the 2nd World War, which surprised many in American Media.
Now, Guruji Prasanna Kasthuri, after showcasing Samarpan in USA, is presenting this very powerful presentation of India’s Independence struggle in is hometown – Bengaluru on August 11, 12 with four consecutive shows in Chowdaiah memorial hall. 12 dance schools, drama teams, and music groups are involved in the great show.
Shantala Arts Trust – a charitable organization is hosting this show in Bengaluru under the leadership of Kalayogi Pulikeshi ji.
Tickets are available online at https://in.bookmyshow.com/plays/samarpan-saga-of-indian-freedom-struggle/ET00364932.
For more details visit https://www.shanthala.org or contact +91-9448074748
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We owe our freedom to them, let’s not forget it.
“Jo shaheed hue hai unkee zara yaad karo kurbani”.