Bharatanatyam is traditionally a team performance art that consists of a solo dancer, accompanied by musicians and one or more singers. The theory behind the musical notes, vocal performance and the dance movement trace back to the ancient Natya Shastra, and many Sanskrit and Tamil texts such as the Abhinaya Darpana. Bharatanatyam is a form of classical Indian art that, when translated into English, signifies the combination of expression, rhythm, music, and dance. In this video, get an introduction to a few foundational Bharatanatyam postures and dance steps Bharatanatyam is a dance of Tamil Nadu in southern India. It traces its origins back to the Natyashastra, an ancient treatise on theatre written by the mythic priest Bharata. Originally a temple dance for women, bharatanatyam often is used to express Hindu religious stories and devotions. Being a very demanding art, Bharatanatyam is known for its sculptural poses, rhythmic footwork, and hand and eye movements. The costuming is also unique. The dancers wear bells around their ankles, jewellery around their waist and neck and makeup to enhance the eye and facial expressions. It gives a wonderful cardio workout, improves blood circulation, tones muscles and is good for bone density as it is a contact exercise,” says danseuse Alarmel Valli. Dancer and choreographer Anita Ratnam says Bharatanatyam has both physical and mental benefits. One of the most respected dance forms, a Bharatanatyam dance tells a story. In Indian mythology, there are three main gods: Brahma (the creator), Vishnu (the protector) and Shiva (the destroyer). It is said that Shiva, who is also known as the lord of dance, created Bharatanatyam Learning Bharatanatyam normally takes many years before the student can perform his/her Arangetram(debut) in public. There are two commonly used styles in Bharatanatyam Costumes for women: the Skirt (Saree) Style or the Pyjama Style. Dancers wear costumes made of silk sarees with gold zari embroidery designs.