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Priya Kumar: Indian Dance Artist

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Saturday, 17 December 2011 10:14


Priya is a dancer and emerging choreographer from Vancouver, BC. She received her training in Bharata Natyam, South Asian dance, under Jai Govinda and Padmini Ramachandran.  She has completed workshops with Lata Pada and Jayalakshmi Eshwar learning complex choreographies and dance dramas.  Kumar has been learning and performing Bharata Natyam for over 20 years and in between has taken various workshops in Khathak, Hip-Hop, Lyrical, Jazz, and Ballet. Priya taught classes at the Roundhouse Community Centre and Dancin’ Stars in Vancouver, BC.

In 2010 Priya has become the Co Artistic Directors of the Academy of Cre8ive Arts. She is closely working with fellow Director, Shai, who has been trained in the Dance Division at The Juilliard School in New York and also at The South Asian Institute of Fine Arts in India. Together there Artistic vision is one of creating a "fusion dancer," one who is trained equally in both the centuries-old techniques of Bharata Natyam and in techniques of the modern dance of our time. Using this preparation of the best from the past and the present, the dancer’s eye and mind are consciously opened to exploring the new possibilities that lie ahead on the choreographic horizon.

Priya was a guest artist at the VANOC Creative Symposium for the 2010 Olympics where she shared creative ideas about dance for the ceremonies.  She also conducted a lecture demo for faculty at Simon Fraser University in Squamish, BC. This was an open discussion about Bharata Natyam, meditation, mythology, hand gestures and music.

Choreographic experiences include Bollywood dance for the movie, ‘Father’s and Sons’, a Diwali Dance Drama with Virtha Dance Academy, a duet to M.I.A.’s “Jimmy”, a classical fusion piece with the Academy of Cre8ive Arts, a classical contemporary duet on Shakespeare‘s “Antony and Cleopatra” and a modern interpretation of the Alarippu with the Academy of Cre8ive Arts.  Priya will be working on a beautiful dance drama which is planned to be presented at the end of the year. 

Some other performances included are at the Vancouver International Dance Festival, Temptations of Buddha, Sawan Mela Festival at Stanley Park with Babukishan Das Baul, S.E.A. School of Nursing Graduation in Bangalore, India, Temple of Rama in Banglaore, India, Davie Street Day Celebration, Mandala Arts & Culture AGM at the Dance Centre, Vancouver Celebrates Diwali at the Roundhouse, Canadian recording artist Bif Naked’s wedding, Realization, at Michael J. Fox theatre, The Bell Centre for the Performing Arts, Canvas Lounge, and the RBC Desifest.

She was also featured in an art exhibit showcasing the revival of 'Lost Bollywood Art.'  Priya has been featured in Mehfil magazine, Chai Time, Maple Ridge News, Northshore Outlook and received a good review in the Georgia Straight for the work she has  done.

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