HomeArts/BooksShinjini Kulkarni, Birju Maharaj’s Granddaughter Wants To Find Her Own Feet

Shinjini Kulkarni, Birju Maharaj’s Granddaughter Wants To Find Her Own Feet

Shinjini-Kulkarni-Birju-Maharajs-Granddaughter-Wants-To-Find-Her-Own-Feet-scaled. India West

Shinjini Kulkarni, Birju Maharaj’s Granddaughter Wants To Find Her Own Feet

NEW DELHI, (IANS) – From the tender age of three, Shinjini Kulkarni’s life revolved around dance. Growing up as the granddaughter of the renowned Pt. Birju Maharaj, she witnessed the God-like stature her grandfather enjoyed in the world of dance. However, she understood early on that as an artist, it was crucial to establish her own identity separate from her grandfather’s legacy.

The pressure was immense, especially when performing in cities where audiences had witnessed Pt. Birju Maharaj’s brilliance on stage. Kulkarni realized the importance of living up to expectations while finding her unique artistic voice. Belonging to the ninth generation of the Kalka Bindadin lineage, she chose Kathak as her art form, not wanting to feel excluded from the family narrative.

Trained by her grandfather, Kulkarni gave her first performance at the age of eight. Despite her lineage, she emphasized that she never missed out on a normal childhood or youth. Her passion for dance enriched her student life, and she took pride in being a part of the dance community during college.

A History Honors graduate from St. Stephen’s College, Kulkarni briefly considered preparing for the UPSC but decided against it as it would interfere with her rehearsals. Her dedication to Kathak led her to portray the role of Meera in ‘Veer Meera,’ a musical staged in Chandigarh, where she aimed to infuse the performance with a fresh perspective and her signature movements.

Kulkarni is also a member of the pure classical-based percussion band ‘Laya Curry,’ which showcases the second generation of musicians. The band’s pieces are shorter in duration without compromising on purity.

Having performed a dance sequence in Muzaffar Ali’s movie ‘Jaanisaar’ and set to be the lead dancer in a ballet at the Lotus Temple, Kulkarni considers Ali a mentor. She shares his love for aesthetics and everything Lucknow.

While exploring different art forms and training actors, Kulkarni isn’t currently pursuing a career in cinema. She finds contentment in her current artistic pursuits, enjoying the world of dance where she feels at peace.

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