Rohinton Cama's mastery of classical Bharata Natyam has received high acclaim in India and abroad with critics repeatedly comparing him to Nijinsky or calling him Bharata Natyam's Rudolf Nureyev.
He was fortunate in receiving training in dance initially from Vyjayanthimala and later from the great Guru K.P. Kittappa Pillai of the Tanjore Quartet.
Rohinton's dance is particularly noted for its strict adherence to the traditional Pandanallur style, rightly famous for its vigour, its dignity and its depth of expression. He has choreographed rare dance items, amongst them the immortal 'Ram Dhun', Mahatma Gandhi's favourite bhajan (devotional song).
He has performed at most of the major dance festivals in India. He has also toured extensively abroad with his troupe and danced in many countries of Europe, Asia and Africa.
"The arrival of Rohinton Cama, young and beautiful as a God, provoked a veritable ovation on the part of the public. Rohinton danced Bharata Natyam with the elegance of an inspired being. The public present that evening were not mistaken in calling him back for four curtain calls. This young man follows the illustrious steps of a Nureyev." (L'Espoir, France)
"Rohinton's exceptional poise and command of pure dance make him one of India's best-known interpreters of Bharata Natyam." (Daily Nation, Kenya)
"His movements were informed by clarity of line, his adavus were well stretched and posturing clean, his mime was effective and his footwork was flawless." (The Hindu, Madras)
"The meticulous technique and classicality, the perfection in the performance of bhava, the eloquence of the eyes, the beauty of mudra: each and every facet of art has been mastered by him". (Kerala Bhushanam, India)
"The enthralled audience sat admiringly spell-bound till the conclusion of the programme at 1.30 in the morning. Even then the brilliant dancer left the audience yearning for more." (Northern Patrika, Lucknow)
"That he was a master of rhythm was evident in his outstanding footwork matched by graceful adavus that confirmed to the strict prescription of the Shastras. The dramatic piece Ram Dhun was the Ramayana in a capsule but the way in which Cama danced to it made it assume mini-balletic proportions". (The Times of India)
"In the final stance, when Rohinton Cama turned his back on the audience and walked away into the dimming lights, the mood was one of total harmony." (Hindustan Times, New Delhi, India)
"Delhi audiences can be forgiven for being blasé. After all, they had just seen the Peking Opera, the Tibetan Sacred Dances and the Russians too. So why should they bother about a solo Bharata Natyam dancer, a male at that? Well, Rohinton Cama made them sit up and take notice. He held their jaded attention for the full programme and at the end, they burst out in the kind of spontaneous heartfelt, thunderous applause that is rarely heard in India". (Shruti, Chennai, India)
Photos: RAJEEV ASGAONKAR.