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Classical dancer Ram Gopal dies in London

Ram Gopal, a great Indian dancer of the 20th century, passed away on Sunday in a nursing home in Norbury, South London. The New York Times a...

Written by Renuka Narayanan | New Delhi |
October 16, 2003

Ram Gopal, a great Indian dancer of the 20th century, passed away on Sunday in a nursing home in Norbury, South London. The New York Times and The Guardian carried glowing obituaries on the dancer, who, along with Uday Shankar, was among the first to enthuse the West about Indian classical dance. While Shankar was a modernist, who tried to blend the classical arts with new balletic choreography, Ram Gopal was mainly a classical soloist whose innovations for the modern proscenium stage are still in vogue.

Ram Gopal presented Indian dance at famous international venues like Jacob’s Pillow (USA) and Edinburgh and wrote autobiography Rhythms in the Heavens in 1957. He danced with Mrinalini Sarabhai in Bangalore, toured with Kumudini Lakhia, and was named a fellow of the Sangeet Natak Akademi in 1990. In 1999, he received the Order of the British Empire. Briefly married to Edith Alexander, who died in 1969, he leaves no heir.

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