Born in 1944 in Madras, Shrimati Lakshmi Viswanathan was trained as a Bharatanatyam artist by Guru Kanjivaram Ellappa Pillai. She received training in Carnatic music from her mother Shrimati Alamelu Viswanthan. Shrimati Lakshmi Viswana- than is a leading exponent of the Thanjavur tradition of Bharatanatyam. She has been acclaimed for her distinctive presentation of the art marked by evocative abhinaya. Her studies in the temple-dance traditions of the Devadasis and in abhinaya have enriched her dance style. She is also known for her writings and lectures on the subject. Shrimati Lakshmi Viswana- than has travelled extensively in India and abroad, presenting performances and participating in seminars. Her dance-dramas and choreographic works have also been well received. She has to her credit a book on the Tamil heritage of Bharata- natyam and a documentary film on Bharatanatyam and its repertoire. She has received several honours for her work including the title Nritya Chooda- mani from Sri Krishna Gana Sabha, and the Kalaimamani from the Tamil Nadu Eyal Isai Nataka Manram. Shrimati Lakshmi Viswana- than receives the Sangeet Natak Akademi Award for her contri- bution to Bharatanatyam.