Guru’s Achievements


An exponent of the Tanjore style of Bharatanatyam, she received rigorous training from Guru Mahalingam Pillai of Shri Raja Rajeshwari Bharta Natya Kala Mandir of Mumbai. Her guru (teacher) is a descendant of the glorious lineage of Thanjavur Nattuvanars who are credited with keeping alive the traditional dance form during India’s colonization.

Artistic Accomplishments

  • She performed her dance debut (Arangetram) at the age of 6 in Podar College, Mumbai, India.
  • Founder and Artistic Director of Shri Krupa Dance Foundation in California. Shri Krupa Dance Foundation is a 501 © (3) non-profit organization dedicated to artistic excellence and expression of Bharatanatyam, the traditional South Indian classical dance.
  • Under her artistic direction and choreography, 77 dance productions have been performed in both Santa Clara County and abroad.
  • She has been teaching for the past 33 years in the Bay area and has performed 122 Arrangetrams (Solo debut performance of a student after years of rigorous training) in the Santa Clara County and India.
  • Her students have performed at the Chennai Dance Festival, Ethnic Dance Festival, San Francisco; World Rhythm Festival, Seattle; APA Heritage Street Fair, San Francisco; Arudra Natyanjali Festival, Livermore; Summer Celebration, International Diplomacy Council, Atherton; Translations, Asian American Dance Performances, San Francisco; Ashkenaz, Berkeley and the APA Heritage Festival, Oakland among others.
  • She is regarded as one of the early pioneers to carve a niche for Bharatanatyam in the San Francisco-Bay area.
    As early as 1976, she was invited to create a summer program about Indian Classical dance for the United States National Peace Corps.
  • She choreographed and performed the first Bharatanatyam dance ballets to be performed in Northern California- “Sculptor’s Dream” and ” Shakuntalam” at Stanford University in 1976.
  • She was the first to establish a Bharatanatyam dance school in the San Francisco Bay area in 1977.
  • She was invited to perform ” Navadyuthi: Rebuilding of a Nation” during Gandhi Week celebration in San Francisco in 1983.

Television Show/Lectures/Publication/Press

  • A panelist at discussion on “Progression of Dance: East and West”. Sept 13, 2006 Broadcast by KZSU Stanford, a non-commercial radio station in the San Francisco Bay area.
  • She was featured in a KQED “Spark” segment focusing on Indian culture and tracing the history and teaching techniques of Bharatanatyam. KQED May 2004.
  • She developed an educators guide to Bharatanatyam in collaboration with KQED. See:
  • She created the television production “Echoes of India” in collaboration with Comcast to present rich vignettes of India’s cultural and artistic heritage in 1993.
  • Founded and published the magazine “Ved Vani” to promote Indian culture.
  • Profiled in an article in San Jose Mercury News titled, “Tradition Lives on in every Move: Teacher helps students reach cultural milestones.” July 14, 2008.


  • Her student Sharanya Balaji won the prestigious award “Yuva Shri Kala Bharati” for most outstanding performance in the Youth Category in 2008 at Chennai, India.
  • Shri Krupa dance students under her stewardship won the Gold and Silver trophies in Barcelona Dance Grand Prix in 2008.
  • In recognition for her unique cultural contribution, she has received numerous grants from the city of San Jose, Arts Council Silicon Valley and California Arts Council.
  • Participant in the 2006 Apprenticeship Program by the Alliance of California Traditional Arts: An Apprenticeship in South Indian Bharatanatyam dance
  • Shri Krupa Dance Foundation was selected to be one of the five groups in residence at the City of San Jose Multicultural Arts incubation program. As a recipient of the Multicultural Arts Incubation Program, received a three-year organizational developmental program that combines technical assistance grants, workshops and direct consulting.
  • A recipient of the Performing Arts Series sponsored by city of San Jose under whose aegis the artiste choreographed innovative and creative fusion productions with African Step Dancers, Chinese artists and Cambodian artists at the San Jose Center for Performing Arts and Montgomery Theatre in San Jose.
  • A recipient of the San Jose Arts Development Program providing technical assistance and organizational growth with access to professional office space.
  • A recipient of Arts Program Grants from the City of San Jose for choreographing and performing original dance drams in Bharatanatyam.
  • Selected to be the first Bharatanatyam dance company to be in residence at the San Jose Repertory Theatre.
  • A recipient of the community award for Outstanding Contribution to Arts and Humanities in 1996 by The Indo-American Chamber of Commerce, Northern California.
  • Served as “Artiste in Residence” for the California Arts Council and the San Jose Unified School District in 1987-88 teaching basic of Bharatanatyam in six of the district schools.