Mukteshwara Temple is a 10th-century Hindu temple dedicated to Shiva located in Bhubaneswar, Odisha. The temple dates back to 950–975 CE and is a monument of importance in the study of the development of Hindu temples in Odisha.
The stylistic development the Mukteswara marks the culmination of all earlier developments, and initiates a period of experiment which continues for an entire century, as seen in such temples as the Rajarani Temple and Lingaraj temple, both located in Bhubaneswar.
Mukteshwara temple is one of the prominent tourist attractions of the city.
Located in Bhubaneswar, the 10th century temple, is the venue of the annual odissi dance festival organised by the state tourism and cultural departments. Usually, the festival is held in the middle of January.
Bhubaneswar is connected to the major cities of India by air and rail. It can be the base for visiting some of Odisha’s biggest attractions, viz. Puri, Konark and Chilika Lake.
The Mukteswar Dance Festival organized by Odisha Tourism is one of the Marquee events of the Temple City. The event is an effort to showcase the cultural heritage of Odisha to the world and is held each year from 14th Jan to 16th Jan. The event was first held in 1984 and since 2004 has been held every year.
The festival celebrates Odissi dance one of the oldest classical dance forms in the country and so beautifully captured in the form of danseuse’s enacting various mudras in the centuries-old temples of the state.
Odissi over the years has gained immense popularity globally for the graceful movements and high spiritual quotient attached with each dance composition.
Connoisseurs of classical dance across the world witness the performances by the maestros enacted amidst divine settings.
Over the years luminaries of Odissi dance like Sujata Mohapatra, Aruna Mohanty, Ratikant Mohapatra, Madhvi Mudgal to name a few have graced the festival.
The magical performances, star lit skies at the backdrop of the temple reminds one of the glorious cultural heritage, immortalized so skillfully in Odisha’s Temple Architecture.
The graceful moves, the trinkets’ of the anklets and symphony of music against the backdrop of the magnificent temple makes for a magical evening.