Courtyard Dancers is a vibrant and diverse group that embodies the idea of multiplicity. We are engineers, doctors, bankers, lawyers, teachers and students who aspire to preserve the core and expand the boundaries of classical Indian dance, especially the North Indian form Kathak. Kathak exemplifies the synthesis of Islam and Hinduism, and signifies to us the act of pluralism practiced every day. For us, dancing is a form of critical social engagement-to connect to the traditional arts of India but within a contemporary framework of aesthetics and progressive politics.

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We aim for artistic excellence by adhering to the precision of classical Indian dance aesthetics but with an open approach to the best of modernity. We are especially interested in working with poetic forms such as Ghazal, Thumri and Qawwali for exploring emotional landscapes of love, justice, humanism, and hope. Our dance-theater creations juxtapose the beauty of the classical forms with everyday movements to envision our own collages of life. We strive to make dance relevant to lived and diverse experiences of our lives, both ordinary and unique. While we work with Indian dance forms that are rooted in traditions, we are continuously searching to mold them to express the contemporary. We believe that tradition and contemporary are not oppositional, but are best understood as legacies, connections, and transformations. We are interested in creating intercultural dialogue with artists from other disciplines, cultures, and creative spaces. We strive for sustainable and pluralistic communities that can acknowledge and bridge differences, without being compartmentalized or homogenized into ahistorical categories. We hope to join the journey of Indian dance to a new era of understanding, research, exchange, and excellence. We offer regular classes, workshops, performance opportunities, and seminars.

 

 

 

 

Join Courtyard Dancers on Facebook.

 

Winter/Spring 2017

Sundays Jan 8 - May 7, 2017

Beginner class: 2-3.15 pm

Intermediate/Advanced class: 3.15-5 pm

click here for more info.

 

 

Courtyard Dancer's performance "Asunder" reviewed by Mytili Jagannathan & posted on Narthaki.com

click here for more info.

 

 

Bells Of Change:Kathak Dance,Women & Modernity in India (book launch)

 

 

Courtyard Dancer's latest creations on progressive Kathak

 

 

Watch Pallabi's video

Pallabi Chakravorty from Leeway Foundation on Vimeo.

 

The Courtyard DANCERS’ exploration and expansion of Kathak to address modern subject matters rewards close attention to small gesture, facial expression, the pathway of a wrist, the soft slapping sound of feet against the stage. These carefully described moments might express details of a life unsung, but not undanced.
Kirsten Kaschock, ThINKing DANCE

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

OUR SUPPORTERS
Dance Advance (a program of the Pew Center for Arts and Heritage) • Leeway Foundation
Asian Arts InitiativePositiveSpaceThe Greater Philadelphia Women's Studies Consortium
Painted Bride Art CenterBryn Mawr CollegeSwarthmore CollegeDakshina
PHOTOGRAPHY: © Jacques-Jean Tiziou, www.jjtiziou.net WEB DESIGN: Sharmi Patel, www.studio885.com