The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Star Spot


Creativity on wheels…

Is Kaustavi’s claim to fame. She has glided into the hearts of thousands with her unusual expertise: dancing on roller skates. She stunned them all at the National Roller Skating Championship 2003 held on the Sports Authority of India campus in May, bringing home the gold in the ‘classical Indian dance on roller skates’ category.

New-age medium…

Does not mean she’s out of touch with old styles. The gal who just graduated from Mahadevi Birla has her artistic roots grounded in tradition. Took the plunge at age seven, enrolling at the Uday Shankar India Culture Centre under Amala Shankar. In eight years, she covered creative dance, Kathak, Kathakali and Odissi, after which she was selected for her guruji’s dance troupe. The 18-year-old has performed in Bangladesh, Chennai, Delhi and Bangalore. Kaustavi, who is now also dabbling in ice-skating, has been focussed on Odissi under Poushali Mukherjee for the past 10 years.

Proved her worth…

At many a forum, and the honour role is quite an eyeful. Starts with the Jugal Srimal scholarship, after she stood first in Bharatanatyam at the Nehru Children’s Museum Tagore Foundation Meet in 1999. Was part of the Stars of Tomorrow show with an Odissi recital and the Indian Classical Music Young Talents Conference 2000. Another first in Odissi won her a scholarship from the Paschim Banga Rajya Sangeet Academy in 1996 and the next year, too.

The list goes on...

And on… She was the Bata Quest winner from 1998, straight through to 2002 in the eastern solo category. In 2000, they handed her the Super-Achiever crown for topping both the eastern and western slots amongst over 1,200 competitors. She captivated an audience at the all-night musical conference at Durgapur in 2002. And she had a solo Odissi recital at the Uday Shankar Nrittyotsab 2002.

Found her footing…

In other areas, too. She was part of the Interact District Council 2001-02. The science student, who has taken the year off to prepare for entrance tests, has kept up her grades through school and her fitness through swimming and gymnastics.

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