A vibrant color costume, intricate jewelry and makeup enhance the visual appeal of this sacred dance. These aspects of the art fall under the realm of Aharya Abhinaya.
Odissi dance costumes are well complemented by elaborate filigree silver or white metal jewelry. These ornaments are made of thin wire, and in Oriya it is called Tarchasi. This highly skilled craft dates back to more than 500 years. The jewelry pieces comprise of the Seenthi (single piece) Mathapatti (forehead ornament), Allaka (head piece on which the Tikka hangs), Kappa (unique ear covers in a peacock pattern) Jhumka (bell shaped earrings) hanging from them; two necklaces – a smaller Chik (choker necklace) and a Padaka Tilaka (longer necklace with a hanging pendant) with Bajuband (armlets worn on the upper arm) and Kankana (wrist bracelets). The strikingly beautiful Bengapatia (3 tier belt). Ghungroos (bells) and anklets complete the look. The jewelry should be stored wrapped in cloth to prevent oxidization. Moisture and sweat tend to blacken the jewelry. Toothpaste can be used for polishing. Do not cramp the jewelry as the links are delicate and break easily. During a performance its a good idea to pin your jewelry to the costume and carry an extra set of ghungroos.
“Myths which are abundantly used in Indian dances are thematically timeless but how you transform these into universal metaphors and symbols is the challenge.” “For an artist, the more you give yourself and your art to others, the more you discover your ‘reason of being’. This is the ultimate enriching learning experience of one’s artistic journey.”