London, March 5 (IANS): Students in Britain can now pursue their careers in Indian classical dance as diploma-level qualifications are being offered for the first time by a Birmingham-based Indian dance company.
The new diploma, offered by Chitraleka Dance Academy, will enable students to gain the grades to teach others as well and pursue professional careers as has long been established in Western dance forms.
“The interest is there and the children want to do it, and they are realising the value of following what they love as a pastime, and it can be a part-time or full-time profession,” Chitraleka Bolar, the academy’s founder, told the BBC.
Bolar is proud that her organisation has been granted Approved Dance Centre (ADC) status by the Imperial Society of Teachers of Dancing (ISTD), making it the first dedicated Indian dance centre in the British Midlands offering qualifications in classical Indian dance.
She feels that now, more than ever, is an important time for young artists to be guided towards a clear developmental pathway — one that the ISTD vocational examination route clearly provides.
“We’ve always had the importance of the dance teacher as being central to the preservation and the continuation of dance forms,” said ISTD chairman Christopher Bannerman.
The dance company has completed 23 years of its work throughout Britain and internationally, creating and touring dance productions, delivering education work and training people of all ages in the ancient art of Bharatanatyam.