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March 13, 2011

Madan Harini - Choreographers
  Madan-Harini - Magicians of dance floor

Choreography is one the most important but overlooked area of filmmaking - at least in Kannada filmdom. If you call a film as teamwork, every one has to put in their best to make the movie a success from actors to direction to story, from music to cinematography to choreography. We have many talented choreographers here but they are behind the screen assets! While cinematography and music direction are recognized, why not choreographers is the basic question of Madan-Harini couple who are with film industries from past 15 years and worked for more than 160 films. Kannada films like Singaravva, America America, Hoomale, Neela etc are the winners of many awards and accolades and Madan Harini couple have choreographed for those films.

Both Madan and Harini came to Bangalore barehanded from their native Puttur (Dakshina Kannada) in search of a job and found their way in film industry. Both of them have learnt Indian Classical Dance from Guru Rajarathnam Pillai. Love bloomed during their dance classes landed in their marriage. It was Aryambha Pattabhi who offered the couple the very first assignment for film Nadaswaroopi. Madan wanted to become an actor but became a choreographer!

Competition is building up in all areas and film industry is no exception. A lot of youngsters are entering this field bringing new waves to touch the young crowd. And obviously has affected the existing people. "We are least bothered about this move" says the dance masters. "We haven't chased any producers to grab the opportunity but never neglected the work came our way" Madan says. He is very proud about his wife Harini, who is only lady choreographer in Kannada filmdom. Now 80 girls are working in his dance troupe and that is possible only because of Harini he acknowledges. "These dancers are more comfortable with her. Otherwise it is tough" Madan says. He recalled the way they struggled to gather 100 dancers for a dance shooting of 'Nooru Janmku Nooraru Janmaku' song of America America a few years ago. Both Madan and Harini went to the doorstep of each dancer to take permission from their elders and managed to gather them on shooting floor! Things have changed now. "We have a troupe of 200 boys and 80 girls working with us now" adds Harini.

Both Madan and Harini welcome the new comers and appreciate their works. But the arrogant attitude of some hurts them. They dislike the stipulating mentality of a few choreographers who wants to appear on the screen at least once in a film! Started with classical dance this couple molded themselves with the current trend not to be left out in the league. Their 11 year old daughter choreographed for dance in film 'Lovlavike'. Still they feel she is too young to enter the industry and want her to concentrate on her studies first. Madan-Harini having more than 160 films in their credit likes their direction for 'Ellidde Illi Thanaka…' from Preethi Prema Pranaya (of Kavitha Lankesh) the most. This song and the dance have received good appreciation from everyone. This simple, shy natured couple is happy with what they are doing today but feels bad about choreography not being recognized for awards. As a ray of hope, Filmfare has started a category for choreography from this year. But was limited only to Telugu films. Lets hope to see this expanded to other regional films too. Even our State Government should realize the need for this category. Lets hope to see Madan-Harini in the winners list in the near future.

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