Kshetrimayum Ongbi Thouranisabi Devi (1946-Present)
Kshetrimayum Ongbi Thouranisabi Devi is an eminent dancer of Manipur. She is one of the prominent artistes of Nata Sankirtana. The Government of India honored her with the Padmashree in the filed of dance in 2003. She is the recipient of the Sangeet Natak Academy Award for her contribution in the field of Manipuri dance in 1980. In 1987 she received the Senior Fellow Award in Diva Ras from the Department of Culture Government of India.
Life of Thouranisabi Devi:
Kshetrimayum Ongbi Thouranisabi Devi was born on November 3, 1946, at Singjamei Sapam Leikai in Manipur. She was born to Leishangthem Tampha Singh and Leishangthem Ongbi Ibetombimacha Devi. Her father was a famous polo player and her mother was popular Nata Sankirtana singer. Since her childhood she showed keen interest in dancing. At the age of 6 when she did not have any formal training in dance she acted as “Nityainanda” in “Goura-leela” which nurtured her talent in dance. Presently she lives with her husband at Chingamathak Thokchom Leikai at Imphal.
Thouranisabi Devi has received training in dance from several eminent gurus. She received her formal training in Manipuri Ras Leela at the age of 10. She is a “Visharad” and an “Achariya” in Manipuri Dance from Shree Govindaji Nartanalaya.
Thouranisabi Devi has produced two books with regard to Manipuri dance. The books “Diva Ras” was produced inn 1993 and “Ras Makha Amsung Nungi Masahk” was produced in the year 2006. These books give an insight into the many aspects of Manipuri dance.
Career ofThouranisabi Devi:
Since her childhood Thouranisabi Devi showed keen interest in dancing. At the age of 6 when she did not have any formal training in dance she acted as “nityainanda” in “Goura-leela” which nurtured her talent in dance. Since childhood she performed in several occasions in as well as outside the state which made her now one of the noted dancers of the state and the country. Among her performances she has notably performed the role of “Rasheshwori” and “Braja Gopee” in the Ras Leelas performed in the Shree Shree Govindajee temple of Manipur.
She has participated in several major festivals and programmes in the country and abroad. She has performed in major festivals in various places of the country, including at Calcutta, New Delhi, Bombay, Hyderabad and Assam. She performed as troop leader OCTAU 2006 celebrating North East at New Delhi in 2006 organized by the department of Culture, Ministry of Tourism and Culture, Government of India. She had performed 25 shows in Canada, West Germany, London, Dubai, US and many others.
She has been associated with the Jawaharlal Nehru Manipur Dance Academy since a long time. She is also a writer and director of the ballet “Radha Sati”. This is the 28th production of the Jawaharlal Nehru Manipur Dance Academy. It recorded six gramophone records from HMV, Calcutta. She has imparted training to different students in the academy. She served as the senior Guru Rasdhari, Guruhan and Pradhan Guru and retired in the year 2006.
Awards and Recognition of Thouranisabi Devi:
Thouranisabi Devi has received gold medals from the Government of Manipur for making immense contribution in the field of Manipuri dance. She received “Royal Robe’ from late Maharaja Okendrajit Singh.She received State Kala Akademi Award in Nata Sankirtana in 1977. She is the recipient of the Sangeet Natak Academy Award for her contribution in the field of Manipuri dance in 1980.
She was the recipient of the “Nritya Ratna” from the Manipuri Sahitya Parishad, Imphal in 1981. In 1987 she received the Senior Fellow Award in Diva Ras from the Department of Culture Government of India. In 1991 she received the certificate of honour from the Chief Minister of Manipur for her contribution in the field of Manipuri Ras Leela.The Government of India honored her with the Padmashree in the filed of dance in 2003.