Mayadhar Raut

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Mayadhar Raut
Guru Mayadhar Raut
Born (1930-07-06) 6 July 1930 (age 90)
Kantapenhara, Cuttack district Orissa
Occupationclassical dancer, dance instructor
Years active1955- present
Current groupJayantika
Dances Odissi

Guru Mayadhar Raut (born 6 July 1930) is an Indian classical Odissi dancer, choreographer and Guru.


Early life and background

Raut was born in the village Kantapenhara a Ahir family in Cuttack district, subsequently he received his dance training under the Guru-shishya tradition of Odissi by Rukmini Devi Arundale at Kalakshetra.

He is married to Mamta Khuntia, and they have one daughter and two sons; daughter Madhumita Raut is also a noted Odissi dancer.


Guru Mayadhar Raut Odissi-by-mayadhar-raut.jpg
Guru Mayadhar Raut

Mayadhar Raut has played a major role in giving Odissi its classical 'shastra' based status. He introduced Mudra Vinyoga in 1955. His notable compositions include ‘Pashyati Dishi Dishi’ and ‘Priya Charu Shile’, composed in 1961.

Mayadhar Raut is considered a master of Natyashastra and Abhinaya Darpana, and has enriched the Abhinaya vocabulary of Odissi. He taught in Kala Vikas Kendra founded by Babulal Josi in Orissa, and trained dancers Surendranath Jena, Hare Krishna Behera and Ramani Ranjan Jena. Raut taught at Shriram Bharatiya Kala Kendra from 1970 until 1995. [1]

As one of the founder member of Jayantika, [2] an association formed in the 1950s, Guruji Mayadhar Raut has played a major role in giving Odissi its classical status. He is the first Odissi Guru to introduce MUDRA VINYOGA in the study of Odissi in 1955 and SANCHARIBHAVA in the Odissi dance items and also the first to present on stage enchanting Gitagovinda ASHTAPADIS, portraying SHRINGARA RASA. His notable compositions include ‘Pashyati Dishi Dishi’. ‘Priya Charu Shile’, composed in 1961. Earlier, only the Oriya songs or the ASHTAPADI ‘Lalit Lavanga Lata’ and ‘Dashavatar’ were taught and performed. [3]

Guruji with Students at Jayantika Tdhc20a.jpg
Guruji with Students at Jayantika

Guru Mayadhar Raut has been honoured with - Padma Shri by the President of India, Sangeet Natak Akademi Award, Sahitya Kala Parishad Award, Utkal Pratibha Puraskar, Odissi Sangeet Natak Academy Award, Rajeev Gandhi Samman, Kavi Samrat Upendra Bhanja Award and Tagore Akademi Ratna - one-time honour of Tagore Samman as a part of the ongoing commemoration of the 150th Birth Anniversary of Gurudev Rabindranath Tagore by the Sangeet Natak Akademy, National Academy of Music, Dance and Drama. [4]

In 2010, his 80th birthday was marked by a five-day international festival of music and dance titled "Yaatra" in Delhi. On this occasion, a book titled, Odissi Yaatra - Journey of Guru Mayadhar Raut, written by Aadya Kaktikar and edited by Madhumita Raut, was also released. [5]

A short documentary on the life and works of Guru Mayadhar Raut is available. [6]

In August 2015, his 85th birthday was celebrated with a series of functions in Delhi and Jaipur by his disciple and daughter Madhumita Raut [7]


Mayadhar Raut has received the following awards:

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  1. Orissa Diary
  2. Jayantika
  3. Odissi Yaatra : The Journey of Guru Mayadhar Raut, by Aadya Kaktikar (ed. Madhumita Raut) Publisher: B.R. Rhythms, Delhi,2010. ISBN   978-81-88827-21-3
  4. Narthaki
  5. "A perfect birthday gift for Guruji". The Hindu . 23 July 2010. Archived from the original on 28 July 2010.
  6. Documentary on Guruji on YouTube
  7. "Odissi Utsav to Celebrate Guru Mayadhar Raut's Life". 29 July 2015. |url=
  8. "Padma Awards Directory (2010)" (PDF). Ministry of Home Affairs. Archived from the original (PDF) on 26 November 2011.
  9. "Tagore Akademi Ratna and Tagore Akademi Puraskar (2011)" (PDF). National Academy of Music, Dance and Drama. Archived from the original (PDF) on 3 March 2016. Retrieved 13 January 2012.
  10. "SNA: List of Akademi Awardees". Sangeet Natak Akademi Official website. Archived from the original on 17 February 2012.