(Last Updated on : 08/09/2014)
In the region of Kerala in southwestern India another dance form was being nurtured, which is named as Mohiniyattam. The literal meaning of the name Mohiniyattam means 'Dance of the Enchantress.' This dance form also posses an Attracting and holding quality. The attributes, which have contributed to this dance, form an aesthetic effect amidst the white and gold costume, arresting hairstyle and the highly graceful movements in medium tempo. 'Persuading movements of the upper body with legs placed in a stance is the characteristic of Mohiniyattam. In accentuating the focus of the movement, the eyes play an important role. Gopika Varma, has been regarded as a leading exponent of the
classical dance form, Mohiniyattam. Gopika originally bided into the ancient Travancore royal family to PrincePooruttathi Thirunal Marthanda Varma. Gopika Varma, the Queen of the Travancore Samasthanam (kingdom) with Bharatnatyam took her first steps in dance at the age of 3 years.She was graduated on to Mohiniyattam, the traditional dance of Kerala. At Kala Mandalam" nestled at Tiruppunitura, a small hamlet in the state she learnt the art of Mohiniyattam.
Under the eminent dancer Smt.Girija and Smt. Chandrika Kurup, Gopika Verma was trained in Mohiniyattam. Her gurus are both senior students of renowned Guru Kalyani Kuttyamma. Gopika Varma spent many years of her life in researching literary, sculptural and musical sources and meeting conventional gurus for a quick look of the origins of this lyrical dance art. Under the proficient guidance of the well-known dancer of Kathakali stage Sri. Kalamandalam Krishnan Nair, she has performed. Sri. Kalamandalam Krishnan Nair helped her to hypothecate and elaborate the Mohiniyattam's entire range of skills and tried to impart the knowledge of Abhinaya within it, now it became the quintessence of Mohiniyattam.
In a widespread way, Gopika has also performed function at various art festivals, Sabhas and temples all over India. ICCR did choose her to represent India. This honor came to her as an award of her dedication.