Sumbhaav School of Kathak Dance

 

Formerly known as India Performing Arts Center (established in 1990), The Sumbhav School of Kathak Dance offers comprehensive training in Kathak under the direction of Rachna Ramya.  Classes are offered in the Hartford, East Lyme, Stratford, and Stamford areas in Connecticut. 

 

The Sumbhav School of Kathak Dance takes its name from Sanskrit. Sum is the first beat of a rhythmic cycle. Because of its primacy, many musicians and dancers consider it to be God-like. Bhaav refers to expressions and intention as according to the “Natyashastra,” the ancient Indian doctrine on dramatic and performing arts. The name also comes from the “Nishkam Karma Theory,” referring to the calm that comes from the ability to observe impartially. The power to observe with detachment brings peace and balance.

Sumbhaav School of Kathak Dance takes pride in offering in-depth knowledge in both the Jaipur and Lucknow styles of Kathak.  Rachna follows the teaching techniques of her gurus, the great maestros of Kathak Guru Rajendra Gangani, Smt. Maya Rao, and Smt. Sandhya Desai.  Special emphasis is given to techniques such as Tatkar (footwork), Chakkaras (pirouetts), Padhant (vocalization), Lay and Tal (rhythm, tempo and rhythmic cycles), Kathak repertoire, Abhinaya (expressive aspects), and Sanrachna (choreography) in order to create and communicate meaning through this compelling dance form. In addition, Sumbhaav provides thorough knowledge of Kathak theory.  We also offer examinations for students who are interested in receiving diplomas in Kathak.


Another focus of Sumbhaav is bringing out the artistic side of each student.  By the time students finish their basic training—in which they learn the technicalities of dance, performance skills and kinesthetic intelligence—they develop skills such as self-expression, self-esteem, and self-respect.  Many students who have studied Kathak at Sumbhav have attested to the fact that this class has enhanced their lives in a very creative way. They also have learned many life-skills such as problem solving, appreciation of self, respecting themselves and others, stress-management etc. 


The students of Sumbhaav are regularly invited to perform at various events in Connecticut and are appreciated and commended for their Kathak performances.  Many past students of Sumbhaav are teaching and performing Kathak in various parts in USA. 


We also provide need based scholarships for the students.


Sumbhaav offers three core programs:

Beginner Class:  The beginner course work takes about two years to finish. Beginner students focus on learning and developing the basic techniques of Kathak, such as Tatkar, Chakkars, Ang, Lay and Tal. They also are introduced to the basic repertoire of Kathak and are expected to use this repertoire to strengthen their basic skills of the dance form. The age group in this class ranges from 6 to 12 year olds.

Intermediate Class:  Students who have completed their beginner Kathak techniques may move to this level. Intermediate students are given more complicated repertoire. They are expected to perform this material in different Tals. The intermediate level also increasingly focuses on expression and artistry.

Advanced Class: Students who have finished their Beginner and Intermediate studies will be invited to join the Advanced Class. These students are given the most advanced repertoire and pieces such as Tarana, Thumri, and Bhajan etc. They also work on performance skills and are given the most opportunities to perform at prestigious venues.

Sumbhaav also arranges for students to visit India and study with Rachna’s gurus.  Many students of Sumbhaav have taken this opportunity to gain experience in the field of Kathak in a more immersive manner.

Sessions: 

The Fall session: September till December
The Winter session:  January till March
The Spring Session:  April till June

The Spring session culminates with a Student’s Recital, where all students, from all locations, perform together.


Workshops and Past Concerts Organized by Sumbhaav

Sumbhaav has conducted workshops for its students with the following great masters and artists of India.

Pt. Birju Maharaj and Vidushi Saswati Sen (Kathak workshop)

Vidushi  Sandhya Desai (Kathak workshop)

Pt. Subhankar Banerjee (Laya and Tal workshop)

Ishira Parikh (Kathak workshop)

Sumbhaav school of Kathak Dance has been graced by the performances of the stalwarts of classical Indian musicians, Pt. Dhruba Ghosh (Sarangi), Smt. Lakshi Shankar (Hindustani classical vocalist), Pt. Atul Desai (Hindustani classical vocalist) and Pt. Subhankar Banerjee (Tabla).
We are looking forward to many more workshops and concerts in future.