m y   g u r u  -  d r . v e m p a t i

Vempati Chinna Satyam is a legendary dancer and guru of Kuchipudi dance form. This exquisite art form was popularized worldwide by him. He was born on 15th October, 1929, in a traditional family of dancers, at a small village of Kuchipudi in Andhra Pradesh. He started learning this dance form at the tender age of nine. Under the guidance of three great Gurus, Vempati Chinna Satyam mastered in Kuchipudi. Initially he learnt from Sri Vedantam Lakshmi Narayana Sastry, then refined his art by learning the graceful movements from Sri Tadepally Perrayya Sastry and later was trained by his elder brother Sri Vempati Satyam in the beauty of expressions.

When Vempati Chinna Satyam mastered in the art of Kuchipudi, he moved to Madras with the objective of making it popular all over the world. His devotion and dedication towards Kuchipudi finally resulted in the establishment of Kuchipudi Art Academy in Madras on 6th February, 1963. Till date he has taught over thousand students the intricate styles and techniques of Kuchipudi dance. He founded another school of dance in Vizag called Kuchipudi Kalakshetra in 1985.

Very soon Vempati Chinna Satyam was a star shining brightly in the sky of international fame. He was conferred with many titles and awards such as "Sangeet Peeth of Bombay", "Asthana Natyacharya of Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanam",''T.T.K. Memorial Award'' by Music Academy, "Natya Kalasaagara of Waltair", "Raja Lakshmi Award of Madras", "Kalaprapoorna" from Andhra University, "Natya Kala Bhushana of Guntur", "Bharatha Kalaprapoorna of Hyderabad", D. Litt. from Sri Venkateswara University, "Asthana Natyacharya of Pittsburg", and "National Award from Central Sangeet Naatak Akademi, New Delhi". He was awarded by many State Governments of India such as Kalidas Puraskar by the Government of Madhya Pradesh and Kalaimamani by the Government of Tamil Nadu. He was honored with a Doctorate degree by Andhra University. Guru Vempati has also received the highest India Civilian Award from Government of India "Padma Bhushan" for his contribution to Kuchipudi.

Vempati Chinna Satyam is famous not only in India but also in abroad. In 1984, he was presented a Golden Key by the Mayor of Miami. 25th September, 1994, was announced as Vempati Chinna Satyam Day by the Mayor of Dayton, Ohio; 27th April, 1984 was declared as Classical Indian Kuchipudi Ballet Dance Drama day by the Mayor of Gahanna, Ohio; 3rd November 1994 as Kuchipudi Dance Drama Day by the The Mayor of Atlanta and September 24, 1994 as Ramayanam Day by the Mayor of Memphis and he was also awarded a key of the city.

Vempati Chinna Satyam produced nearly fifteen dance ballets including Padmavati Srinivasa Kalyanam, Vipranarayana Charitam, Menaka Viswamitra, Kalyana Sakuntalam, Bhama Kalapam, Chandalika, Padmavathi Sreenivasa Kalyanam, Rukmini Kalyanam, Hara Vilasam, Siva Dhanurbhangam and Ardha Nareeswaram, being the latest. Vempati Chinna Satyam sublimated Kuchipudi within the boundaries of the Natya Sastra and gave it a more classical basis.