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Vempati Chinna Satyam

Vempati Chinna Satyam


Avinash Vempati Chinna Satyam is a great Kuchipudi dancer and instructor. He expanded this magnificent art style all over the world. Chinna Satyam was born on October 26, 1929, into a well-established dance family in the Andhra Pradesh hamlet of Kuchipudi.

At the tender age of nine, he began training in this dance. Vempati Chinna Satyam attained Kuchipudi mastery under the guidance of three renowned Gurus. Initially, he received instruction from Sri Vedantam Lakshmi Narayana Sastry. He later improved his craft by studying the elegant movements from Sri Tadepally Perrayya Sastry. Finally, he received instruction in the art of beautiful expressions from his older brother, Sri Vempati Satyam.


Guru Vempati Chinna Satyam dedicated his life to the retention, outreach, and dissemination of Kuchipudi in India and around the world. He has been primarily responsible for the resurgence of Kuchipudi dance in post-independent India. He is a dynamic performer, an amazing choreographer, and an inspirational instructor. A biography of Chinna Satyam was written by Andavilli Satyanarayana in addition to Surya Rao.

In 1963, Vempati began teaching and opened his Kuchipudi Art Academy in Madras with a great desire to spread Kuchipudi. The Academy can be proud of more than 180 solo performances as well as 15 dance dramas that were choreographed and composed by Dr. Vempati Chinna Satyam.

Kuchipudi was considered a folk dance, with only a few plays in its repertoire, including Bhama Kalapam, Usha Parinayam, Sasirekha Parinayam, Prahlada Charitham, and Gollakalapam. Being acquainted with the Natya Sastra, Vempati transformed the Kuchipudi art form by perfecting movements that he thought were too primitive and by creating a set curriculum for pupils to follow.

He gave Kuchipudi a more classical and refined appearance while systematizing it without compromising its immaculate purity. He added only dance scenes and melodies in place of lengthy conversations in dance dramas. Vempati implemented these novel alterations while upholding the traditionalism of the art form. He changed the choreography's focus and definition while keeping it entirely within the parameters of Natya Sastra.

He also included new aspects, such as the chart (leg movements) of Natya Shastra, which are very distinct from the interpretations of other dance authorities. Vempati created new styles and made sure Kuchipudi wasn't just for men.

All across the world, these solo performances and dance dramas have been presented. In the same time frame, Vempati wrote his first dance drama,' Sri Krishna Parijatham,' which was followed by another smash hit, Ksheera Sagara Madanam, in which he also starred. Thunderous ovations greeted his portrayal of Lord Shiva and his amazing dance. With his very first attempt succeeding with flying colors, his long-held ambition to elevate Kuchipudi to the ranks of the most well-known classical styles gained momentum.


Padmavati Srinivasa Kalyanam, Vipranarayana Cheritam, Menaka Viswamitra, Sakuntalam, Bama Kalapam, Chandalika, Rukmini Kalyanam, Hara Vilasam, Siva Dhanurbhangam (the first portion of the ancient epic Ramayana), and Ardha Nareeswaram were all created by Vempati.

In Tamil, he also wrote Kumara Sambhavam, Padmavathi Tirumanam, and Sri Krishna Parijatam. Every dance drama he choreographs and assists is a perfect example of the depth of his understanding and mastery of Kuchipudi and his capacity to convey every subtlety of the issue to admiring experts and laypeople.

Vempati's artistic brilliance allowed him to create numerous solo pieces and make improvements to the way pure dance sequences were performed. This drew numerous young women to Kuchipudi who did not come from Andhra Pradesh or the community of traditional dancers.

Vempati's captivating choreography and electrifying flair were seen and praised in practically every country. In 1971, he traveled to London and France with his students for the first time, winning praise everywhere he went. To take part in the event in 1973, he later traveled with his group through South America and the Caribbean Islands.

From that point on, the Academy group made an unending number of travels to the United States, Russia, Canada, and European nations like Germany, France, Italy, Holland, Belgium, Switzerland, Sweden, Denmark, and the Gulf States, where they produced performances and received laudatory remarks.

Kuchipudi was never regarded as a classical dance style because it was a dance play. However, Vempati argued that it is also a form of classical dance, and because of his tireless efforts, Kuchipudi was certified as such by the Central Government.

Vempati Chinna Satyam

Vempati had great knowledge of Kuchipudi and was a taskmaster and perfectionist. He recruited dancers from Kuchipudi village and encouraged and trained them at his dance academy as he had personally seen the negative effects of poverty. He paid for their accessories like jewelry and outfits, and he even gave them lodging.

Vempati was the choreographer for NT Rama Rao's successful film 'Narthanasala.' Vempati's student was NTR's daughter, Union Minister Daggubati Purandeswari. He collaborated with Kamalakar Kameshwar Rao, a prominent Telugu director known for his mythological films. In two Telugu films, Pandava Vanavasam and Sri Krishna Vijayam, he created dances for Hema Malini. He helped out with the choreography for NTR's social drama 'Devadasu.'

Among the numerous accolades bestowed upon him are the Padma Bhushan from the Government of India, the title "Fellow" from the Sangeet Natak Akademi (New Delhi) in 1991, the Kalidas Samman from the Government of Madhya Pradesh in 1992, the Kalaimamani from the Government of Tamil Nadu in 1994, in 1980, Sri Venkateswara University (Tirupati) awarded an honorary doctorate (D.Litt. ); in 1994, the Sri Venkateswara Temple (Pittsburgh) presented Asthana Vidwan; and in 1995, the Madras Music Academy presented the TTK Memorial Award.

In 1984, Vempati received the Golden Key Award from the Mayor of Miami. The Mayor of Dayton, Ohio, established April 27, 1984, as Classical Indian Kuchipudi Dance Drama Day. In 1994, the African States of Ghana designated September 25 to be Vempati Chinna Satyam Day in honor of the dancing master.

November 3, 1994, was designated as Kuchipudi Dance Drama Day by the Mayor of Atlanta. Dr. Vempati received honorary citizenship from the mayor of Cleveland. The day of the Ramayana, September 24, 1994, was designated by Memphis' mayor, who also gave him the city's key. At the Cartage Festival, the President of Tunisia gave him the gold medal. He received commendations and awards in 1995 at the Avignon Festival in France.

Trinity of Kuchipudi Art Academy

Vempati Chinna Satyam's most significant contribution to Kuchipudi dance was not only his great choreography but also the systematization of the Kuchipudi by the Natya Sastra treatise. The Kuchipudi Art Academy trained its students not only in Kuchipudi dance but also in the fundamentals of classical music.

Over the course of nearly three decades, the Kuchipudi Art Academy's Trinity?Sri. S.V. Bhujangayaya Sarma (lyrics), Sri. Patrayani Sangeeta Rao (music) and Vempati Chinna Satyam (choreography)?have produced countless ballets that continue to be well-liked today.

Vempati Chinna Satyam

With the entrance of women to perform the dance, Vempati Chinna Satyam's decision to reorganize the way Kuchipudi was performed brought forth a new elegance and style, which his guru, Lakshminaraya Sastri, pioneered.

Under Satyam's watchful eye, Kuchipudi's evolution remained stable and forward-moving by incorporating modern choreography techniques and converting what was a temple and court dance tradition to the proscenium. He did away with all the superfluous extras that Kuchipudi was associated with. By establishing the Kuchipudi Art Academy in 1963, he improved his business venture.

Death of Vempati Chinna Satyam

The 83-year-old Kuchipudi dance master Vempati Chinna Satyam passed away on July 29, 2012, from multiple organ failure. Although he was hospitalized, he spent the previous three months at home. He responded to treatment really well but suddenly started to deteriorate, which resulted in death. This is how India lost one of its most precious gems.


Vempati Chinna Satyam's innovative brilliance revolutionized the process of perfecting Kuchipudi. In order to make the dance form appealing to all individuals, he established the notion of clear lines, a sparkling quality in the choreography, and faultlessness in the resolution of movements. He also gave birth to a new erudition. He was indeed an inspiration for everyone.

Frequently Asked Questions-

Q. What did Chinna Satyam do for Vempati?

A. In 1963, Chinna Satyam founded the Kuchipudi Art Academy in Madras. Satyam has composed and choreographed over 180 solo pieces and 15 dance dramas for the Academy. These solo pieces and dramas have been performed in India and abroad.

Q. What is Vempati Chinna Satyam's educational background?

A. He received a Doctor of Philosophy degree from Andhra University. Not only in India but also internationally, Vempati Chinna Satyam is well-known. He received a Golden Key from the Mayor of Miami in 1984.

Q. Did Vempati Chinna Satyam get the Padma Bhushan Award?

A. Yes, in 1998, Vempati Chinna Satyam received the Padma Bhushan.

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