Are Bharatanatyam and Kathak the same?

Most of us are always wondering if Bharatanatyam and Kathak are the same in every sense. Just as two notable names, they vary from each other just like their respective names.

Their main difference between the two lies in their roots, i.e. Kathak originated traditionally in Varanasi in North India and then extended across the North. Bharatanatyam developed in South India, which we call today as Tamil Nadu. KATHAK, originated from the Sanskrit word KATHA, meaning ‘plot’. And BHARATANATYAM means Bha- BHAVA i.e. feelings & impulses, ra- RAGA i.e. melody or the musical notes template, ta- TALA i.e. groove and Natyam- A Sanskrit phrase for dance.


Kathak dated directly to 400 BC, in Natya Shastra, whose earlier sage lies. Kathak had its roots in the Bhakti Movement. It portrays Lord Krishna ‘s stories in dramatic fashion, most of them being his fictional love for Radha. The kathak performed in a static posture, where the Mudras, substantial quick feet, and body language. The development of Kathak attributed to Janaki Prasad a dancer and Sanskrit professor.

Bharatanatyam dated back to in the mid-thirties as developed by S.Krishna Iyer and then extended by Rukmini Devi Arundale. Bharatanatyam’s history claimed to have arisen in the 2nd century by Bharata Muni and Natya Shastra, through a text in Tamil. The Tamil epic SILAPPADIKARAM discusses Bharatanatyam ‘s traditional life, while temple paintings from the 6th to 9th century CE indicate it was an excellently-refined performing art by mid-1st generation. Bharatanatyam is the biggest tradition of classical dance.

Now, when doing one of the dance styles, you need grace, confidence as well as proper hand movements that will suit your quick feet, and for that, you need a lot of practice, however, people, when they have to pick either of the ones, ask if they are easier and better. Kathak is a popular artist used in a dramatic and elegant way for a general conversation or storytelling. While Bharatanatyam portrays emotions through the performance that considers lord shiva or even Devi Parvati.

Are Bharatanatyam and Kathak the same