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The Alarippu (Tamil: அலரிப்பூ; meaning flowering bud) is traditionally the first dance piece that Bharatanatyam dancers learn and perform.[1] It is an invocation piece, symbolising the offering of respects to both god and the audience.[2]

It is a dance ritual accompanied by a nattuvanar (verbal percussionist) and a drummer.[3] The act is entirely based on rhythm and is focused on relaxing the body of the dancer, thereby relaxing her mind and symbolizes her awakening.[4]


  1. Faubion Bowers (1953). The dance in India. Columbia University Press. pp. 48–50. 
  2. Roy, Sujoya (June 15, 2005). For Ganesh, Remover of Obstacles. iUniverse, Inc.. pp. 219. ISBN 0595345565. 
  3. Ragini Devi (July 1, 2002). Dance Dialects of India (3 ed.). Motilal Banarsidass Pub. pp. 56. ISBN 8120806743. 
  4. Vatsayan, Kapila (June 15, 2003). The Square and the Circle of the Indian Arts. Abhinav Publications. pp. 81. ISBN 8170173620. 

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