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Erasing Borders Festival of Indian Dance Outdoors
At The Downtown Dance Festival
Robert F. Wagner Jr. Park, Battery Park City.

August 20, 2014. 6-8pm

Prabal Gupta, Kathakali Exponent Name: Prabal Gupta, Kathakali Exponent
Dance form: Kathakali
Bio: Prabal Gupta, A most sought after Performer, Choreographer and a Research Scholar, is a prominent name in the world of Kathakali. He is a disciple of the Central Sangeet Natak Academy Awardee and the legendary Kathakali Exponent and Research Scholar - Guru Sri Sadanam Balakrishnan. Prabal is a versatile Kathakali Dancer and can portray both Purusha Vesham and Stree Vesham with ease and specializes in the Keezhupadam style of Kathakali. Prabal’s diligence and perseverence for Kathakali soon captured the attention of the critics and the connoisseurs of dance leading to establish himself as one of the finest exponents of the form. His most sought after research article - “ The Art of Kathakali – Then and Now - A Comparative Analogy” which speaks about soloism in Kathakali and ” The Biological
Dr. Yamini Saripalli Name: Dr. Yamini Saripalli
Dance form: Kuchipudi
Bio: Dr. Yamini Saripalli is a disciple of gurus Dr. Vempati Chinna Satyam and his son, Sri Vempati Ravi Shankar. She has performed with Dr. Chinna Satyam's troupe in the United States as well as throughout India. As a solo artist, Yamini has performed at various prestigious venues such as the Kennedy Center, Washington D.C. ; Milapfest, Manchester, England ; Ravindra Bharathi, Hyderabad, India and at the December season in Chennai, India. She propagates the rich, ancient art form of Kuchipudi through both performing and teaching in the Washington DC area.
Sanjukta Sinha Name: Sanjukta Sinha
Dance form: Kathak
Sanjukta Sinha had her initial training in Kathak with Pt. Arjun Misra. Sanjukta received a Govt. of India scholarship award to do future training with Smt. Kumudini Lakhia at Kadamb centre for dance in Ahmedabad, where she trained for 5 years, and where she is now a dancer, teacher choreographer and researcher. Sanjukta has toured extensively in India as a soloist and also as a member of “The Kadamb Ensemble”. She has also toured solo in Europe, Japan, Indonesia, Canada, U.K., Singapore, and Pakistan. Sanjukta has immense energy which is seen in her “Nritta” and a lyrical charm in her “Abhinaya”. Sanjukta’s love for music has enabled her to incorporate forms of music such as Dhrupad, Sufi, Contemporary, besides the traditional Bhajans & Thumries into her choreography.
Sristhi Dances of India Name: Sristhi Dances of India, directed by Sreyashi Dey Individual performers:
Odissi Dancers: Sreyashi Dey, Kritika Rajan, Ishika Rajan Bharatanatyam Dancers: Krithika Rajkumar, Vertika Srivastava, Sathish Mohan
Dance Form: Odissi and Bharatanatyam
Bio: Srishti Dances of India is an Indian classical dance company specializing in the Odissi style. The artistic director of Srishti is Sreyashi Dey, an acclaimed Odissi dancer. She has successfully created several choreographic collaborations with other styles, in addition to traditional Odissi works. The company has toured extensively in the US as well as internationally, and has been supported by numerous arts grants and awards, including ones from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Heinz Endowments, the Mid-Atlantic Arts Council, among others.
Leah Raphael Curtis and Emily Mcloughlin from Delhi Dance Theater Name: Leah Raphael Curtis and Emily Mcloughlin from Delhi Dance Theater
Dance Form: Indian/Western
Delhi Dance Theater (DDT) was established in 2011 by Leah Raphael Curtis (US), Emily McLoughlin (UK) and Lydia Walker (US). They started the company out of the desire to unite their knowledge of Western classical dance with the traditional classical dance forms of India. Now based out of New York City, DDT's staff spends four months of the year in India producing project-based performances. In summer 2011 DDT had its debut performance in NYC at The Green Building in Brooklyn. They presented a showcase of Indian inspired performance and visual art including live music, film and dance.

Leah Raphael Curtis is a dancer, choreographer and instructor from New York City, she is the co-director of Delhi Dance Theater. She holds a BA Honors in contemporary dance from London Studio Centre, and also trained at Alvin Ailey, Dance Theater of Harlem and the Joffrey Ballet School. She went to India in 2007 to study Kuchipudi under Raja and Radha Reddy and began learning Kathak under Chetna Jalan in 2009. Leah has danced throughout India, notably at the Parampara Festival Delhi, Natriagendi Dance Festival in Trivandrum, World Dance Day at The Habitat Centre, New Delhi, Quarterfest in New Delhi, Lokrang Cultural Festival in Bhopal and the Khajuraho Dance Festival in Khajuraho. Leah currently teaches, choreographs and performs for the DDT in NYC and India.

Emily Mcloughlin is a dancer, choreographer and instructor from the UK. She has a diploma from London Studio Centre, UK and furthered her studies at The Limon Institute, NYC. Emily began studying Kathak under Chetna Jalan and Susmita Chaterjee in 2009 in Kolkata. She has danced at World Dance Day at The Habitat Centre, New Delhi, Quarterfest in New Delhi, Lokrang Cultural Festival in Bhopal, for Manish Arora and Shekhur Kapoor’s Circus of Life in New Delhi, and for The Lulu Art Group in Denmark. She is a co founder and director of Delhi Dance Theater and currently teaches, choreographs and performs for the company in NYC and India.  
Madhusmita Bora and Prerona Bhuyan Name: Sattriya Dance Company with collaborator Anita Sharma from India
About the company:Sattriya Dance Company was launched in 2009 with a mission to tell the story of Sattriya, and raise awareness about Majuli and the sattras (monasteries) through performances, lecture demonstrations and classes. The company’s artistic directors are Madhusmita Bora and Prerona Bhuyan.
Bio: Madhusmita Bora: Sattriya is Madhusmita's heritage. Born and raised in Assam, she grew up to the rhythms of this incredible art form practiced routinely at her village prayer house. She made her debut as a dancer before she turned four, performing at her village temple for the annual Raax festival, dedicated to celebrating the life of Lord Krishna. Madhusmita has trained under Padmashree Jatin Goswami, Guru Naren Barua , Adhyapak Gobinda Kalita from the Uttar Kamalabari Sattra, and Guru Ramkrishna Talukdar. She has also intensively trained and performed with Kathak Guru Janaki Patrik of New York. Her dedication to propagate the art form has been widely recognized by the media in her native Assam. She is a recipient of the Art & Change Grant from Leeway Foundation for the years 2009, 2010 and 2011. She is also the recipient of the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts Grant for the year 2013 and the Nritya Saradhi Award, 2014. Madhusmita is also a business reporter and teaches English at Lincoln University. She’s currently working on a book documenting Mati Akhara or the basic movements of Sattriya.
Prerona Bhuyan: Prerona was introduced into the world of dance by her mother at age four. She trained in Bharatnatyam under Guru Indira PP Bora. She has experimented with different genres, including Contemporary and Jazz under Santosh Nair and Ashley Lobo. She also practiced yoga under renowned Guru Navtej Johar. Prerona studied Sattriya under the guidance of Padmashree Jatin Goswami,Guru Naren Barua and Guru Ramkrishna Talukdar,. Prerona is also involved with a music production company called Folk Beats which is working towards preserving the folk music of Assam. She divides her time between USA and India for the cause of promoting Sattriya.
Anita Sharma Anita Sharma, collaborating artist: Anita Sharma: Anita started learning Sattriya at the age of nine with Late Roseswar Saikia Barbayan. She later studied with Padmashree Jatin Goswami. A "Grade A" artist of Doordarshan Kendra, she is also the founder of Sattriya & Odissi dance institute Abhinaya Dance Academy in Assam. Anita is a Ministry of Human Resource Development, Department of Culture, Government of India Fellowship awardee 2005-2007. In 2013, she won the prestigious Devadasi National Award. Anita has cut a niche for herself in the field of choreography. She is credited with secularizing Sattriya with several compositions such as “Anubhav” and "RituRang" . Anita has also assisted Padmashree Jatin Goswami in choreographing Sangeet Natak Academy produced play "Chandalika", which is based on a story by Rabindra Nath Tagore.
Noopur Singha Name: Noopur Singha
Dance Form: Manipuri
Bio: Noopur Singha studied Meitei Jagoi with her parents Nartan Acharya Sri Guru Nabaghana Shyam Singha and Christel Stevens. In Imphal, Manipur she studied with Oja Thambal Tombi Devi as a child, and most recently at the Academy of the late Padma Shri Guru Th. Babu Singh, the retired Pradhan Guru of the Jawaharlal Nehru Manipur Dance Academy. There, she was under the strict guidance of his son Th. Chourjeet Singh and his wife Bimola Devi and worked closely with Manipuri Jagoi Marup. In addition to Meitei Jagoi she can also often be seen performing classical Balinese dance and her own work around New York and Washington, DC. []
Dr. Mitul Sengupta Name: Dr. Mitul Sengupta
Dance Form: Kathak
Bio: Dr. Mitul Sengupt is a National Scholar in Kathak dance from Ministry of Culture, Govt. of India, a Fellow in Kathak dance from Kalakritti Sanskritti Foundation, New Delhi, and a Psychologist. Mitul is an empaneled artist of ICCR & EZCC, Sangeet Natak Academy. She was privileged to demonstrate her work as the youngest lecturer in Lucknow Rashtriya Kathak Sansthan among other panelists like, Guru Ranjendra Gangani, Guru Munnalal Sukhla, Smt. Shovna Narayanan.

She started her dance career at the age of five, and was under the tutelage of great Kathak exponents like Pt, Birju Maharaj, Smt. Saswati Sen, Late Pt. OmPrakash Maharaj, Dr. Malabika Mitra, Smt. Madhumita Roy and Smt. Chetna Jalan. She also trained in Classical Jazz and Ballet along with Movement and Effort Shape Analysis, under Mr. Ronnie Shambik Ghose. She is presently the guest lecturer, Performing Arts Therapeutic Division, and Examiner of Choreography, in Rabindrabharati University and a Professional member of the American Dance Therapy Association and teacher, choreographer and Director of Rhythmosaic Dance Company.
Subhash Viman Gorania Name: Subhash Viman Gorania from Phizzical Productions
Dance Form: Contemporary
Phizzical Productions aim is to produce and commission unique experiences influenced by international cultures for the benefit of the public. The company creates entertaining, innovative and thought-provoking work that reflects the challenges and possibilities of our time. Phizzical is recognised for engaging hard to reach audiences and disadvantaged young people by making and delivering excellent imaginative work that engages everyone.
Bio: Subhash Viman Gorania is a dancer heavily influenced by street, urban and contemporary styles. He has trained under choreographers and teachers like Nilima Devi MBE and Chitraleka Bolar in classical Indian dance styles in the UK and a range of highly regarded teachers in India. He has performed in many countries including the UK, Ireland, Slovenia, India, and Germany. He has choreographed for sampad, Phizzical and most recently, co-choreographed with Aakash Odedra in the production Gottes Kleine Krieger in Germany. He will be working with him in Linz on a new solo piece for Arts Electonica.
Meena Murugesan
Photo credit: Stephen Gorme
Name: Meena Murugesan
Dance Form: Contemporary BharataNatyam
Bio: Meena Murugesan is a choreographer, filmmaker, researcher, and teaching artist. She investigates the ways in which South Asian dance histories intersect with Western dance histories, and how these junctions might be re-choreographed and visibilized through live performance and multi-media. She strives to make these connections between past and present structures of power relevant to herself, collaborators, and audiences. Born and raised in Montréal, Canada, she has been living in Los Angeles for the last three years where she completed her MFA in dance from UCLA, Department of World Arts and Cultures / Dance. Meena’s movement practice is deeply rooted in bharata natyam, improvisation, somatic body practices, and house dance (key teachers include Vasantha Krishnan, Josefina Baez, Zab Maboungou, Marie-Claude Rodrigue, Michael Greyeyes, Dazl, Rennie Harris). Meena is a member of the DesiJam Dance Collective, is currently working with Post Natyam Collective on their latest project “Queering Abhinaya,” and creating film and video images for L.A. artist d. Sabela Grimes' latest performance "Electrogynous."
Mesma Belsare
Photo Credit: Kateryna Odyntsova.
Name: Mesma Belsare
Dance Form: Bharatanatyam
Bio: Formerly trained in Bharatanatyam by Sri Shankar Hombal and Padmashri Geeta Chandran in India, Mesma Belsaré is continuing her studies under Dr. Maya Kulkarni in New York City. Mesma is a recipient of the Cambridge Arts Council's Artist-Grant and the Government of India scholarship for advanced training in Bharatanatyam and Indian classical music. Her professional dancing career includes solo performances at the Lincoln Center (NYC), Asia Society (NYC), Alvin Ailey Theater (NYC), The Lincoln Theater (Washington D.C.), Siri Fort and Triveni (New Delhi) and the Harbourfront Centre (Toronto) among other venues. She was twice nominated for the Brother Thomas Fellowship by The Boston Foundation and for the Dora Mavor Moore Award by the Toronto Alliance for the Performing Arts. Mesma is the Artistic Director of the non-profit initiative RASA: Re-Presenting Arts of South Asia and curates educational programs based on contemporary art in Boston, Massachusetts.

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