Komala Varadan
DiedJuly 27th 2019
OccupationClassical dancer
Known forBharatnatyam
AwardsPadma Shri
Sahitya Kala Parishad Samman
Bharat Shiromani Award
Kalaimamani Award
Rajyotsava Prashasthi
Natya Rani
IBC International Woman of the Year Award
Full Circle Inner Flame Award

Komala Varadan is an Indian classical dancer of Bharatnatyam, writer[1] and the founder of Kalaikoodam, a Delhi-based institute for promoting arts, literature and culture.[2] She is known to be proficient in various art forms such as choreography, photography and painting.[3]


Ms Varadan learnt classical dance from one of the leading dance maestros of India, Vazhuvoor Ramiah Pillai. She has performed on many stages in India and abroad. Her paintings have been exhibited at many galleries including the Russian Centre of Science and Culture (RCSC), New Delhi and the National Gallery of Modern Art, New Delhi. She has published two novels and a text on Bharatnatyam and has served as the member of the Jury of the 30th National Film Awards for the feature films section. She is also a member of the Authors Guild of India.[3]

Varadan is a recipient of the Kalaimamani Award of the Government of Tamil Nadu, Rajyotsava Prashasthi of the Government of Karnataka, Natya Rani title, International Woman of the Year Award (1998 -1999) of the International Biographical Centre, Cambridge, Sahitya Kala Parishad Samman and the Full Circle Inner Flame Award (1999).[4][5] The Government of India awarded her the fourth highest civilian honour of the Padma Shri, in 2005, for her contributions to Indian classical dance.[6] Three years earlier, Varadan was in the news for a civil suit filed by her against the Indian Council for Cultural Relations (ICCR), for categorising performing artists over the age of 45 as lecture-demonstration presenters. However, the court ruling was against her.[7] Her life has been documented in an autobiography, Komala Varadan, published in 1985.[8]

See also


  1. ^ "Komala Varadan Performing in Athens". Indo-Hellenic Society for Culture and Development. 1 October 2007. Retrieved 3 December 2015.
  2. ^ "Kalaikoodam (Komala Varadan Institute of Art)". Delhi Events. 2015. Retrieved 3 December 2015.
  3. ^ a b "Exploring relationship between art forms". Tribune. 9 November 2000. Retrieved 3 December 2015.
  4. ^ "World Dance Day by Komala Varadan_'Natya Rani' title in Singapore". Naresh Kumar Sagar. 30 March 2012. Retrieved 3 December 2015.
  5. ^ "Prakritim Vande - Dance by "Padmashri" Komala Varadan in Austin". Austin India. 2012. Retrieved 3 December 2015.
  6. ^ "Padma Awards" (PDF). Ministry of Home Affairs, Government of India. 2015. Archived from the original (PDF) on 15 October 2015. Retrieved 21 July 2015.
  7. ^ "Past your Prime -Ageism in dance". Narthaki. 25 April 2003. Retrieved 3 December 2015.
  8. ^ Komala Varadan (1985). Komala Varadan. Komala Varadan Institute of Art. ASIN B0040IWSNK.

Further reading