Nityananda Das dances to perfect Odissi rhythm executing mudras and presenting mimetic prowess effortlessly. Nityananda dances on one feet.
Hailing from Bideipur in Bhadrak, Nityananda ,In 1991 , came to Bhubaneswar to be groomed as an Odissi dancer and learned under the tutelage of Guru Bimbadhar Das and Guru Gangadhar Pradhan of Orissa Dance Academy. He soon blossomed into a dancer of rare talent and stamina. He turned a choreographer and choreographed for the `Jatra’ teams in the state. That proved lucrative and all seemed to be going well.
On June 11, 2000 on his way from Bhubaneswar to Bhadrak, his home town, on his brand new motorbike collided head on with a speeding truck. The cruel twist of fate took from a dancer his most valuable asset. Though his life was saved, his leg could not be.
Nityananda Das lost his right leg forever.
After six months in the hospital when he returned home his world seemed to have fallen into a shambles. At the peak of his career as a dancer- choreographer, everything seemed bleak and a future that would be empty.
As time healed, Nityananda realized he was made of sterner stuff and his spirits had not died. He decided to rise Phoenix-like and practiced hard to build his balance and stamina. “It was very tough. But I fell back on my experience as a dancer”. “If Sudha Chandran could do it, so can you,” said his guru Bimbadhar Das who came forward to support him in the new journey of his dance life. I knew just then with my Guru’s blessings, hard work and determination nothing is impossible.” Thus began a saga of grit and determination. He proved that the best was yet to come.
The saying “The lame scales mountains and the dumb turns voluble” was proved. With just one leg Nityananda returned to the stage mesmerized the audience with his terpsichorean skills! He literally danced with one leg moving the audience to rapture. Sudha Chandran herself complimented him when he partnered her once, saying he had accomplished with one leg what she had with a support leg.
Nityananda refused the financial assistance that was offered to him by friends and well wishers in the wake of the accident. A man of self-esteem he chose to earn his living again. Nityananda set up a dance institution `Kalasharam’ in Bhubaneswar where hundreds of students learn dance from him. He explains the mudras to them and uses hands to explain the footwork. Loath to live on charity he began accepting professional assignments and is back doing choreography and earning a living. Dance that was his passion and profession , has pushed the tragedy in his life to the distant past.
“I am glad that I am back to what I love the most i.e. dance. I dedicate my life to it.” Nithyananda Das was recently awarded the Cavin Kare Ability award for his achievements despite his disability. He organizes an annual dance festival giving opportunities to his disabled brethren to showcase their ability in performing arts especially dance.
“Do not see my Disability , see my Ability”
Watch a vedio of his performance for a television channel.- copy paste the link