Odissi Guru Jyoti Rout, holds masters degree in Odissi dance and classical music from Utkal Sangeet Mahavidyalaya, under the guidance of Guru Deba Prasad Das and Guru Pankaj Charan Das.
Guru Jyoti’s Odissi, while strong in form, has been most exceptional for its range and depth of expression. In her dance, she moves between rage, love, fear, and amusement with ease. Jyoti has continued to perform extensively through out US since 1993 but has focused even more on choreographing new pieces. The divine nature of Odissi shines through in this radiant dancer, guru, and choreographer.
Guru Jyoti Rout says that one of the highlights of her career was having the opportunity to dance in the Jagannath temple in Puri in 1993.
Gayatri has been learning from Guru Jyoti Rout from 1997. Guru Jyoti Rout has been the Gayatri’s not only teacher but the sole inspiration for Odissi dance.
‘Gayatri Joshi is a promising dancer who is committed and passionate about the art and traditions of Orissa. I have been very impressed and touched by her humility and loyalty towards me as her Guru. And her dedication to our culture is unbelievable. In this respect she goes beyond her personal human capability to serve. She is a great blessing to the next generation of Odissi dance and Jyoti Kala Mandir. She has my blessings and I wish her the best for her future.’ Guru Jyoti Rout
Guru Shri Hare Krishna Behera, a well-known Odissi exponent and Guru, and is the pioneer of bringing Odissi out of the geographical confines of Orissa and unleashing its creative muse to a wider audience than hitherto enjoyed.
Guru Shri Hare Krishna Behera was born in the village of Buanl in the district of Balasore, Orissa. From a very early age he was attracted to the finer nuances of the Odissi dance form, and learned the Gotipua and Mahari style of Odissi from these gurus apart from learning Champu, Chhanda Tabla, and contemporary dances like Bhajan and Chhota Khayal.
His attraction towards the dance form was evident in his adolescence when, at the age of six, he joined the ‘akhada’ parties in his village. Towards fulfilling these ambitions in part, he came to Balasore in 1952, where he joined the Nritya Sangeet Kala Mandir as a dance teacher. In 1957, he joined the Kala Vikas Kendra to pursue his education. Here under the watchful tutelage of Guru Keli Charan Mahapatra, his mastery of the dance form flowered. During the same time, he joined “Jayantika”, which was a conflation of gurus, scholars and students of the art form under one roof committed to evolve Odissi with a classical character.
In 1960, Kala Vikas Kendra, sponsored Guru Behera’s entrance to the Natya Ballet Centre at Delhi to learn ballet. Guru Shri Behera combined this opportunity to teach Odissi to aspiring students of the Natya Ballet Centre and thus started the pioneering work of propagating Odissi outside Orissa into the wider canvas of the country’s cultural milieu.
In 1964 he received a scholarship from the Sangeet Natak Academy (Orissa) and also from cultural Deptt., Govt. of India to learn kathak from pandit Shri Birju Maharaj. Simultaneously he learnt Pakhawaj from Late Shri Purushottam Das and Thumri from Late Smt Siddheswari Devi. In 1971, he joined the Gandharva Mahavidyalaya as an “Odissi Guru”. In 1974, he again served as an Odissi Guru at Sri Ram Bharatiya Kala Kendra.
Guru Shri Behera started his own institution ‘Odissi Kendra; in 1976. Guruji has traveled widely to places, like the former USSR, USA, UK, South America, Mongolia, Poland, Austria, Holland, Germany, Denmark, Thailand, Sweden, Switzerland, Nepal, Japan, Maldives, Italy and France and has composed many new items in Pallavi, Abhinaya, Tandav, Mangalacharan etc. He has also choreographed several dance dramas combining classical Odissi with folk forms.
Gayatri learned from Guru Hare Krishna Behera from 1986-1990 at New Delhi and performed with the school on several occasions.
Additionally Gayatri has learned music and dance from Bhawanipatna Sangeet Vidyalaya in Kalahandi, Guru Durga Charan Ranbir in Bhubaneshwar and Guru Patitapavan Rout in New Delhi.