Google Doodle is celebrating the birth anniversary of Indian kathak dancer Sitara Devi. The legend Sitara Devi was born in Kolkata on November 8, 1929, and Rabindranath Tagore described her as Nritya Samragini when she was just 16 years old. Sitara Devi’s family was originally from Varanasi and her mother Matsya Kumar was from a royal family of Nepal. Sitara Devi’s father Sukhdev Maharaj was also a Kathak dancer they wanted her to learn dance but faced criticism from members of his communities, but Maharaj and Sitara Devi were encouraged by Rabindranath Tagore himself. She learned Kathak from a very young age and she gave a solo performance when she was just 10 years old.
Sitara Devi couldn’t continue her schooling due to the passion of dance and soon shifted to Mumbai. In Mumbai, Sitara Devi gave a stage performance where Sarojini Naidu, Rabindranath Tagore, and Sir Cowasji Jehangir are also present. Tagore was so impressed with her performance, they congratulated her with a shawl and a gift of Rs. 50. Her talent was recognized and honored by all even by the Indian government. She received the Sangeet Natak Akademi Award in 1969, and the Padma Shri in 1973. Sitara Devi performed all over India and abroad, like in Royal Albert Hall, London (1967) and in Carnegie Hall, New York (1976).
In 2002 Sitara Devi was awarded the Padma Bhushan and she was passed away on November 25, 2014.