Meaning of abhinaya in English:


Pronunciation /əb(h)ɪˈnɑːjə/


mass noun
  • (in Indian dance) expressive techniques used to convey a theme, mood, or idea.

    ‘The closer the spectator is to the dancer, the greater impact the abhinaya will have.’
    • ‘He had distaste for loudness in footwork or abhinaya.’
    • ‘She was a rarity; all of her abhinaya was improvised.’
    • ‘All of these elements of his training combined to make his abhinaya flawless.’
    • ‘The shoka rasa that flowed from her abhinaya touched the audience too.’
    • ‘The comfort of playing the role that is more or less like you is a very natural way to get into abhinaya.’
    • ‘That's what a little exposure to Indian abhinaya will do for you.’
    • ‘I failed to perfect the abhinaya of that particular part.’
    • ‘We glimpsed the dazzling Kathak footwork, the Kathakali abhinaya, the nuanced bodywork that Deboo has fused into his individual style.’
    • ‘Feted for her captivating abhinaya, she is regarded amongst the finest exponents of this dance form.’
    • ‘She was always known for her abhinaya skills.’
    • ‘Kavita with her natural abhinaya impressed the audience.’
    • ‘He was an incredibly engaging dancer and brilliant choreographer of abhinaya.’
    • ‘Neat positions, excellent deliveries and meaningful abhinaya made his presentations memorable.’
    • ‘His theatrical background gave him a great miming ability and each time he danced abhinaya he created a vividly imagined world on stage.’
    • ‘Each of us had to compose and perform abhinaya for a variety of songs.’
    • ‘The artistes are very strong in abhinaya.’
    • ‘These levels evolve out of the basic training of the dancer and her enlarged vision of the aspects of abhinaya delineation.’
    • ‘" Some dancers have approached me in order to learn abhinaya.’
    • ‘Did the disciple follow his singing in her abhinaya?’


Sanskrit, from abhi ‘towards’ + ni ‘carry’, literally ‘carry towards (an audience)’.