Today, a vital aspect of Srjan’s function is dance teaching, which is patterned after the ancient “Gurukul” system; the students live in the Guru’s home & the constant interaction with the teacher & each other helps one to absorb the total ambience of the time - honored heritage. And Guruji’s rigorous teaching method has been faithfully adopted by his son, Ratikant Mohapatra, who has, all along, ably and imaginatively assisted this great & dedicated teacher in imparting knowledge & techniques of the Odissi dance heritage. This legacy is truly priceless..
What marks out this ambience of teaching and learning are the individual attention, and an empathetic, personalised care that had been taken by Guruji and now by Ratikant, extended to every disciple, irrespective of individual competence. This one-to-one relationship creates an atmosphere of not only trust but of belonging to this second home; lifetime bonds are forged here-and Art benefits.
Odissi dance training is not the only concern of this institution. Srjan hosts a number of classical dance & music festivals on an annual basis. Prominent among these are - 1) “Guru Kelucharan Mohapatra Award” which honours lifetime achievement in Dance, Cinema, Music & Theatre, 2) “Samsmranam” festival, 3) “Marga Darshan” Purush Dance festival, featuring only male dancers and 4) “Deesha” festival at Kolkata which presents “Yuva Prativa Samman” to young Classical dancers.
The training schedules are rigorous, because they involve not only dance-practice and exercises, but also an understanding of Odissi music and rhythm (Tala) system, as well as an overview of the Indian classical heritage and its value system. At Srjan we are the fortunate beneficiaries of this tradition which has been inherited by us through our Guruji, and forms the bedrock of all our efforts and our mission in the service of Odissi dance.
Hence, at Srjan, everyone is important, each person’s thoughts and feelings count. The teachers, the students and the support staff are motivated to live and work as a family- an opportunity thus created for individual fulfillment and the fulfillment of the little community’s commitment to a life of Art and Aesthetics.