Born on July 26, 1928, Guru K N Dakshinamoorthy Pillai hails from a family of Natya Vidwans and musicians, famous over generations for their contributions to the performing arts. In the highest tradition of his family's dedication to the arts, Guru Dakshinamoorthy has dedicated himself to Bharatanatyam, the classical dance of India

Guru Dakshinamoorthy began his career as a percussionist playing complicated rhythm patterns on his mridangam. At the same time he was deeply influenced by his elder brother Padmasri (late) Dandayudhapani Pillai, a genius in the field of Bharatanatyam who also founded the institution NatyaKalalayam

The Delhi chapter of NatyaKalalayam was run under the stewardship of Guru Dakshinamoorthy inaugrated in 1953. Its been a matter of great pride to the institution that every known artist of Bharatanatyam has been at sometime or the other been connected with Natyakalalayam.

Guruji conducted innumerable arangetrams (over a hundred) and gajje poojas to his credit. He has traveled widely, both in India and abroad, accompanying different artists. Guruji has evolved a unique methodology for imparting training in Bharatanatyam to both Tamil speaking and non Tamil speaking students. He composed several Jathis which has broken new grounds in the realm of Bharatanatyam choreography. He is also the composer of melaprathis, padams, nrityavandanas and thillanas. He has represented the dance community on the panel of specialists on Doordarshan's Dance committee and on the Department of Culture's Dance Evaluation Panel.

An innovator and a modernist in the field of Bharatanatyam, Guruji instills the highest qualities of excellence through his ardous teaching and training

Guru Dakshinamoorthy's list of students reads like a veritable who's who in Bharatanatyam. Among his prized pupils have been Yamini Krishnamurthy, Sonal Mansingh, Anjana Banerjee, Anne Marie Gaston, Tarveen Mehra, Hema Rajagopal, Geeta Chandra, Veenu Dakshinamoorthy, Usha Srinivasan, Nalini Rau, Manish Chawla , Ragini Krishnan and Urvashi

His contribution to Bharatanatyam has been acknowledged by Anne Marie Gaston in her introduction to her book "The Dance of Siva"

Guruji's influence on Bharatanatyam has been alike a Banyan tree. His students have spread the world over and have opened chapters of Natyakalakayam.

Guruji has accompanied peforming artists on thier tours abroad. As a cultural ambassador he has carried India's message of beauty and peace through arts to Pakistan, Britain , America and the former Soviet Union

Restless and Patient, persevering and diligent, of tireless zeal and a modern sensibility Guru Dakshinamoorthy is a Guru in the finest tradition of India's ancient Guru Parampara. Guru Dakshinamoorthy has received Kalaimamani Award from Tamil Nadu Government in the year 1985. He has also received Sahitya Kala Parishad Award in the year 1992.

Guruji contributed to Bharatanatyam through the video documentation on his bani ( Dandayudhapani style ), Sangeet Natak Academy, New Delhi and Sindhi Foundation Chennai Chairman on Pathali Raman., Advised by Dept. of Culture Ministry Government of India

Masterji passed away on April 29th, 2005. His student Guru Dr. Nalini Rau wrote his obituary published in Narthaki. She published musings about her Guru in the magazine of India Westchester Center. The scan for that is here.

Dr. Nalini Rau