'Mirror' act or twins? Meet the Bharatanatyam dancers who put up a 'Kidilam' performance

Bhagyalakshmi and Dhanalakshmi performing in Mazhavil Manorama's 'Kidilam' stage. Photo: Special arrangement

When Bhagyalakshmi began performing on the Mazhavil Manorama 'Kidilam' stage, everyone including the judges of the programme mistook it for a typical 'mirror' dance. The expression, smile and steps – all seemed perfectly synchronized. However, it was not a mirror alone that helped Bhagyalakshmi in this performance, it was her twin sister Dhanalakshmi, all through.

The performance earned the twins a ‘KI- DI- LAM' - (three buzzers) from Mukesh, Rimi Tomy and Navya Nair, the judges of the show. The video of the performance has gone viral on social media with many appreciating the duo for their perfect timing and grace.

Speaking to Onmanorama, the twins, who hail from Kollam and presently residing at Chottanikkara, said they never expected such a huge reception for their performance.

“We had taken part in 'Oru Chiri Bumper Chiri' last year. We had attempted stand-up comedy then and had received a lukewarm response to it. So, we did not expect this reaction from the public. We are overwhelmed,” says Bhagyalakshmi. According to her, they only trained for a day before the performance.

“Though we had attempted a dance with one mirror and frame in the past, this is the first time we are doing it with multiple mirrors. This was suggested to us by one of the technical members of the show,” she said. She added that the judges were surprised to learn that it was twins who were performing on the show. “They did not see Dhanalakshmi as she was brought inside the mirror train to the stage. There were three mirrors and two empty frames. I performed in front of the mirrors, while Dhanalakshmi mirrored me in front of the empty frames,” she said.

She added that they were delighted to see the surprise and excitement on the judges' faces. The judges were so surprised that they made the duo perform again, to make out the difference.

Dhanalaksmi says the bond between them, probably helped in putting up such a realistic performance. “We know each other's strengths and weaknesses. This has helped a lot,” she said. Though a lot of people have performed mirror dances, this is probably the first time that twins have attempted it in classical style. “We have seen videos of people performing mirror dance. But none of them were twins. Also, all of them had opted for western dance. I think we are the only ones who have attempted a mirror semi-classical dance. We would like to perform a classical dance, the next time,” she said.

Both Dhanalakshmi and Bhagyalakshmi are currently pursuing BA in Bharatanatyam from St Teresa's College, Ernakulam. They say their mother is their greatest support system. “We started learning dance at the age of three. When we reached the seventh standard, both of us started aspiring to become choreographers,” she says.

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