HAILAKANDI, March 23 � The Guinness Book of World Records authorities have given recognition to the non-stop 26 hour 34 minute dance performance along with live music by the 125 dancers of Sonali Academy of Fine Arts, Hyderabad. This will be published in the next edition of the book. The Academy is led by Sonali Acharjee, an internationally acclaimed classical dancer, who hails from Hailakandi town of Barak Valley in southern Assam. She planned and performed the entire event of unique dancing Guinness Record feat titled �Rabindra Nrityotsav� at Rabindra Bharati of Hyderabad on the occasion of Tagore�s 150th birth anniversary celebration on February 1-2. It was organised in collaboration with Andhra Pradesh State Cultural Council, Department of Culture, Shilparaman and South Zone Cultural Centre of Nagpur and Thanjore.
The HoD of Fine Arts in Andhra University, Dr P Sai Kumar and professor of dance in Banaras Hindu University, Dr S Murali Babu were the main witnesses of the event. The entire event was recorded and sent to the Guinness authorities for approval and they finally declared it as a world record on February 25. Altogether 125 dancers who included former students of Shantiniketan and other eminent dancers from France, Germany, Japan, Sri Lanka, Nepal and Bangladesh performed in the event. The event saw performances on four famous ballets of Rabindranath Tagore � Chitrangada, Chandalika, Shyama and Bhanu Singher Padavali and incessant dances on the songs of 150 popular Tagore songs. The performance of the artistes of Nrityanjali Dance Academy of Hailakandi (Sonali�s native place), led by Madhumita Bhattacharjee, enthralled the packed Hyderabadi audience in the auditorium. All the 150 artistes performed on 150 musical compositions of Tagore in 12 languages portrayed in nine different dance forms.
The eminent persons who attended the event included Tamil Nadu�s Governor and former Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh, Konijeti Rosaiah, Bengali film actress and MLA Debashree Roy, Culture and Tourism Minister of Andhra Pradesh, Vatti Basantha Kumar, Principal Secretary of Tourism Department, Dr KV Ramana, Chairman of Cultural Council, Ramana Murthi, Silparaman�s GN Rao, former principal and HoD of Rabindra Sangeet, Dance and Drama, Viswa Bharati, Santiniketan, Prof. K Jatindra Singha among others.
Expressing her reaction after achieving the target, Sonali said that she is delighted at getting recognition of the Guinness authorities and thanked all the artistes and persons involved with this giant venture. Sonali further said that she was successful in paying tribute to Gurudev (Tagore) in order to create the Guinness record.
Sonali started learning dance at the tender age of 5 in her native town Hailakandi and later trained in Odissi classical dance in Cuttack under Guru Raghunath Dutta. She also later trained in Rabindranritya and took her masters on it under Prof K Jatindra Singha from Viswa Bharati, Santiniketan. She left for Hyderabad ten years ago and started Shristi Odissi Dance Academy to teach the youngsters.
She choreographed Shyama, a Bengali dance-drama of Rabindranath Tagore in Telugu for Doordarshan. The passion for Rabindranritya has inspired her to take up the Guinness Record feat, as a tribute to her idol. She was honoured with the Nrityacharya award from Assam and Pratibha Puraskar from Chennai in 2010 besides many national and international recognitions.