Thinking of dance lessons for your child or for yourself? You can arrange to come in for an interview any time in the school year. We teach professional dance to students from 5 years old and up. Actual registration is in September and October but there are lots of student events you can attend and participate in during the year. We teach beginner, graduate and post-graduate classes in Bharatanatyam and Odissi in studios in Thornhill and Brampton. Ask about our live streamed classes from Mumbai!
In addition to our curriculum classes from grades 1 to 7, Our activities include: Dance Performances for Cultural and Community Events, Dance Intensives in Bharatanatyam and Odissi given by Menaka Thakkar and Artists in Residence, Training for Arangetram performance. In Studio Visiting Dancers Talks and Performances plus Live Streaming performances and dance classes from Mumbai by esteemed dancers.
Call Swati Tripathi at (905) 763 - 6083 Ext:30 for registration details or to come in for an interview.
Watch a documentary about the beginnings of Nrtyakala https://vimeo.com/122207070
News & Events
OUR FACULTY - Dr. Menaka Thakkar - Artistic Director & Principal - Teacher of Bharatanatyam and Odissi to Senior Students
"Menaka Thakkar is a major figure in the Canadian dance landscape. She has trained with some of the best in India and, for years, has made their teachings accessible to the mainstream in Canada. Her work has truly enriched our collective culture." — Robert Sirman, Canada Council for the Arts Director and CEO
"Dr. Thakkar has introduced people from diverse cultural backgrounds to the majesty of Indian dance; she also has explored how different dance forms and their ways of moving can intermingle and complement one another. We salute her for everything she has accomplished on behalf of dance and dance education in Canada." —Norma Sue fisher-Stitt Chair, Department of Dance York University
"Menaka is a born teacher. She is also a living ambassador for East Indian culture with all of its colour, diversity and long-standing tradition. She has made a powerful impact on my life and my appreciation for another culture. What a wonderful contribution she has made to the Canadian mosaic!" —Dennis F. Tupman Past District Principal for the Performing Arts Vancouver School School Board.
Neena Jayarajan, Assistant Artistic Director and Bharatanatyam Teacher of Senior Students, Rehearsal Director, Rehearsal Director
Neena is a Bharatanatyam dancer who has trained under the guidance of Dr. Menaka Thakkar for over 27 years. Neena has earned a Masters Degree in Dance from York University. She is a lead dancer with Menaka Thakkar Dance Company in Bharatanatyam, Odissi and modern Indian dance. Neena has toured with the company to various cities across the United States. Canada and India.
Chrishantini Ravishankar, Head of Brampton School - Bharatanatyam Teacher
Chrishantini heads the Brampton Nrtyakala branch and also teaches at the Thornhill school. Chrishanthini was one of the earliest students of Nrtyakala and travelled as a young girl with Menaka and other students to perform in India and Canada. She later danced for Menaka Thakkar Dance Company. Her daughters Raveena and Meghana have followed in their mother’s footsteps and are currently senior students of the school.
CONGRATULATIONS TO NEENA JAYARAGAN! Nrtyakala TEACHER, REHEARSAL DIRECTOR, AND MENAKA THAKKAR DANCE COMPANY DANCER WINNER OF THE 2016 Chalmers Award Fellowship.
The Chalmers family has a well-known history as one of Canada’s premier patrons of the arts. Long associated with the founding and support of a number of arts institutions, they have also demonstrated a commitment to supporting the individual artists who contribute to Canada’s culture. Chalmers Arts Fellowships support artists in Ontario to examine, investigate, explore and/or experiment with style, technique, method, or an issue or concern in their arts practice. The program allows artists to dedicate themselves to their arts practice, thereby making a significant impact upon their careers beyond a single project.
Neena has been awarded funding from this highly competitive program to experiment with ensemble choreography on bharatanatyam dancers; collaborate with Ravi Jain on a project with actors; and work with yours truly (Nova Bhattacharya) on the creation of a new solo.
As the recipient of a Chalmers Fellowship myself in 2003, I know how meaningful it is to receive such an endorsement of one’s artistic endeavors. The Fellowship provides a formal construct for the time and space required to dream big and dive deep into creativity. I'm not in the least bit surprised that Neena has been recognized for her passion and formidable talent! Watch out world, here she comes!
Congratulations to SUJATA MOHAPATRA - ODISSI TEACHER/DANCER, FREQUENT VISITOR TO NRTYAKALA, DISCIPLE OF GURU KELUCHARAN MOHAPATRA AND FRIEND. Chosen by the New York Times as one of 10 Best Dance Performances for 2017
SUJATA MOHAPATRA Every year many superlative dancers come to New York. If I had to choose one to single out this year, it would be Ms. Mohapatra, the illustrious Odissi dancer who opened the Drive East season at Dixon Place in August. I have seen Ms. Mohapatra dance in India and in New York, but too seldom. The layers of communicative beauty in her dancing are innumerable. Click Ms. Mohapatra for full story.
Kiruthika Ratnasingam - Teacher of Bharatanatyam to junior students. began her initial Bharathanaytam training under the guidance of Smt. Rajini Kulendran at the age of eight, with whom she completed her Arangetram in 2004. In 2008, she undertook further training under the tutelage of Dr. Menaka Thakkar, an internationally renowned and multi-honoured artist. Kiruthika subsequently became an active company dancer in Menaka Thakkar Dance Company, her Bharathanaytam training has been complimented
by workshops in Kalaripayattu, Odissi and intensive body conditioning. Menaka Thakkar Dance Company features an extensive repertoire of performances and Kiruthika has performed and toured in many of these including, Shapes & Rhythms, In the Future Soil, Agni Rath, Ganesha Narthanam,Parashakti, Sitayana, Homecoming, Love’s Folly, Chitra, Prince Rama, Wise Monkey and Foolish Crocodile.
Ayushi Sharma, Odissi Teacher
Ayushi Sharma started learning Odissi in 1999 at Gandharva Mahavidyalaya, New Delhi under the guidance of Pyali De and Madhavi Mudgal. After coming to Canada, she joined Menaka Thakkar Dance Company and continued training at Nrtyakala under the tutelage of Menaka Thakkar and Sujata Mohapatra.