Fine Arts Society
“The dancing foot, the sound of tinkling bells,
The songs that are sung and the varying steps
The forms assumed by our dancing Gurupara
Find out these within yourself,
and then shall your fetters fall away.”
His Holiness Sri Swami Satchidanandaji Maharaj
Founder/Spiritual Guide of the Fine Arts Society
Sri Swami Satchidananda attained Mahasamadhion August 19th, 2002
His all abiding Love and Blessings are with us forever.
His Holiness Sri Swami Satchidanandaji Maharaj, one of the most revered Yoga masters of our age is considered an apostle of peace by many. His Holiness’ teachings are dedicated to the principle that “Truth is One, Paths are Many.”
As an exponent and teacher of Integral Yoga, His Holiness encouraged the fine arts of music, dance, and drama – of all cultures and traditions – to affirm the unity of arts and religion and to promote universal peace and goodwill. At his Ashram in Sri Lanka and at Satchidananda Ashram Yogaville, His Holiness inaugurated a Fine Arts Society to express the devotional aspect of Yoga through music, art, and dance. Bharatha Natyam, the traditional and spiritual dance form of India, emphasizing disciple of mine and supreme devotion, was recognized by His Holiness as one of the highest forms of Yoga.”
Aims of the Fine Art’s Society:
To propagate the Fine Arts of music, dance, drama, and others among people of all nations, races, and creeds, with respect for the various traditions and cultures of the world.
To affirm the unity of art and religion.
To promote peace and good will and emphasize harmony in its highest sense within and without.
Inaugurated in 1984, the Fine Arts Society embraces, as its students, children of all nationalities, races and religions. Regular classes are conducted in Bharatha Natyam in Richmond and in Yogaville (on request). Our students are invited to perform in cultural events at various schools, colleges and universities. The Society’s annual dance recital is one of the most enjoyed events by all. In addition, artists of all traditions and cultures have performed by invitation. Imparting knowledge, the ecumenical way, the Society endeavors its best to uphold its aims and affirm the unity of art and religion through music and dance.
Bharatha Natyam, is an ancient form of Indian Temple dance. Unique, Eternal and Universal, it is one of the most subtle and graceful styles of dance art in the world. Born within the precincts of the temple, Bharatha Natyam uses the rich repertoire of Hindu mythology as a fine medium of expression. This highly developed, stylized and sophisticated art form gives aesthetic delight to art lovers around the world.
Need more information? Call 888.888.8888
Fine Art’s Society
Mrs. Rukmini Rasiah
Mrs. Rukmini Rasiah, a long time devotee of Sri Swami Satchidanandaji Maharaj, hails from Jaffna, Sri Lanka. She served as the Director of the Fine Arts Society of the Satchidananda Ashram in Kandy, Sri Lanka for 20 years before she had to leave her home country due to the political upheaval in 1983.
Mrs. Rasiah was invited by Sri Swami Satchidanandaji to Yogaville Virginia in 1984. The Fine Arts Society of Yogaville was inaugurated the same year.
Mrs. Rasiah organized Bharatha Natyam (Indian Classical Dance) Residential Teachers Workshops conducted by Guru Padmashree Adyar K Lakshman from 1990 to 1994. She also organized the Residential Natya Adhyayana Gurukulam (Annual Bharatha Natyam Summer Camps) successfully with Gurus Padma Bhushan Sri VP and Smt Shanta Dhananjayan, the Artistic Director of the Fine Arts Society, Smt Padmarani Rasiah Cantu and with the help of dedicated support staff and Swamis, from 1989 to 2013.
Mrs. Rasiah, with deep devotion to her Guru, quietly and passionately continues to serve as the President of the Fine Arts Society overlooking all activities of the Society from its inception till present.
Smt. Padmarani Rasiah Cantu
Artistic Director and Instructor
Padmarani, who hails from a distinguished family from Jaffna, Sri Lanka, combines versatility with an international reputation as a dancer and teacher par excellence. She studied with the distinguished Master Teachers Padmasri Adyar K. Lakshman and Padma Bhushan Sri and Smt. Dhananjayan of Chennai, India. Padmarani has performed extensively in many other countries and in the United States, earning accolades from audiences and critics alike.
Since 1984, Padmarani has been the Artistic Director and Instructor of the Fine Arts Society of Yogaville in Buckingham, Virginia. She has presented many of her students for dance graduation and taught along with the Dhananjayans at the Annual Natyam Gurukulam conducted by the Fine Arts Society from 1989 till 2013.
As a Selected Artist with the Virginia Commission for the Arts Tour Directory since 1991, cultural and educational institutions in Virginia benefit from her expertise in performing and teaching this art form in all it’s pure and pristine glory
Guest Yoga Instructors and Advisors
Swami Gurucharananda Mataji
Spiritual Instructor and Hatha Teacher
Mataji is a senior monk-disciple of Sri Swami Satchidananda Maharaj, and an inspiration to all who know her. Her life exemplifies “discipline, dedication and devotion” to the Teacher, Teachings and Sanga. She delights in sharing the teachings of Integral Yoga and has done so for more than 50 years. “Mataji,” is one of our most popular teachers at Yogaville and abroad, leading guided meditations, Hatha Yoga classes, meditation workshops, offering kirtans and giving talks.
Swami Priyaananda Mataji
Spiritual Instructor and Hatha Teacher
Swami Priyaananda has devoted over thirty years to the study, practice, and teaching of Integral Yoga. Her life is an example of yoga in action, and her classes are a beautiful reflection of her love and dedication. Mataji is currently serves at the Ashram as Director of the Living Yoga Training program, guiding aspirants in how to establish and go deeper on their spiritual path. She also oversees the Satchidananda Ashram Archives, preserving the teachings of Sri Swami Satchidananda for future generations.