InspirAsian Dance & Yoga

 

Wellness through Movement

 

Welcome to the homepage of InspirAsian Dance and Yoga! I am Charlotte Richards and I am a teacher, choreographer and performer. Through the emphasis on 'Wellness through Movement,' I offer Culturally Diverse Movement in the genres of: ~Classical Indian Dance; Kathak, Bollywood and Bhangra Dance & Hatha Yoga for All.

Contemporary Indian Dance

  • Performing Arts in Schools, Acadamies and Colleges benefit from Contemporary Indian Dance Workshops by learning Classical Indian Dance with devices of motif development.
  • Akram Khan workshops available including original Kathak compositions dating from the 1800’s.

 

INDIAN DANCE

Bollywood and Bhangra Dance

  • Lively, feel good, up-beat Dance.
  • Inclusive, diverse and accessible.
  • Team-building and morale boosting activity.
  • Specific themes incorporated to bring to life classroom based topics.
  • Available for all ages.
North Indian Classical Dance

Kathak Dance

  • Northern-Indian Classical Dance Form of the Lucknow Gharana
  • Set form of movements, traditional to the genre.
  • Rooted in philosophy of Hindu and Muslim origins.
  • ISTD compositions taught from Grades 1-3, in-person in Cornwall or online.
  • Educational talks and demonstrations about Kathak available.

Indian Dance Offerings:

     Performance

Workshops

Classes

Specialising in various styles such as Kathak (North Indian Classical Dance), Bollywood, Bhangra, and Folk dance.

“Why Choose Indian dance?”

From first experiencing Indian dance in the foot hills of the Himalayas in Rishikesh, I instantly found it to be a memorable experience of joyfulness, gratitude and a celebration of India’s diverse culture.

I operate in the South-West and primarily offer workshops for Education. 

Other Offerings

Dance Party Workshops Hen Parties in Cornwall, Birthday Parties in Cornwall, Children’s Parties in Cornwall, Workshops for special events, Weddings, Fundraisers, Diwali Events, Eid Celebrations. Home Education Groups in Cornwall, Specialist SEN workshops, Care Home Wellbeing Workshops, Community events, Festivals and Carnivals.

Indian Dance Workshops for Education

Secondary School Diversity Day

Cornish Times April 2023

“A DAY of learning about the importance of celebrating diversity was recently held at Looe Community Academy.

“Year 8 and 9 students were involved in learning about the culture of Sikhi and Sanatana Dharma (the native name for Hinduism). InspirAsian from Truro led year eights in learning different sections of a dance which everyone joined in with during the reflection and celebration session at the end of the day. Charlotte, who led the session, said: ‘I am still buzzing from being at the school yesterday. It was a real success.'”

 

Further Education Indian Dance and Yoga Workshop

Students of King Edward’s School Bath on their first day of College, ages 16-17.

Enquire for Indian Dance: Primary and Secondary Workshops for Schools

3 + 14 =

Training and Qualifications:

BA Hons Dance and Related Arts

ISTD Grade 4 Kathak

PGCE/ PCET

NVQ3 Early Years Education

Hatha Yoga Teacher Training

Safeguarding

First Aid

 

Experience in Indian Dance:

BA Hons Dissertation on ‘Nataraja’ the Hindu God of Yoga and Dance.

Dancing Nikita Company since 2005. Mentor: Nikita Thakrar at DNC Studio in London.

Training in classical Indian Kathak dance, with renowned Gurus such as Pratap Pawar, Shila Mehta and the Kathak legend; Pandit Birju Maharaj. 

Professional Performer of Kathak and other Indian Dance Styles for stage shows and cultural events.

DBS enhanced checked

What is Kathak Dance?

Kathak is a classical dance form from North India that tells stories through expressive movements, gestures, and facial expressions. As well as the storytelling element, Kathak Dance compositions can also show rhythmical patterns of footwork, fast spins and contrasting dynamics. There is a philosophical framework associated with Kathak that shares many similarities with Hatha Yoga.

The History and Development of Kathak Dance:

The term ‘Kathak’ is rooted in the Vedic term ‘Katha’ which is Sanskrit for ‘story conversation, traditional tale.’ The term ‘Kathakas’ is the name for ‘storytellers’ and appears in ancient Hindu texts, such as the Mahabharata. Bards, actors, dancers, singers and musical reciters of legends are mentioned hundreds of times in the Hindu Epics. 

The first major landmark in the development of Kathak came with the spread of Vaishnavism (worship of Lord Vishnu and Krishna as an incarnation of Vishnu) between 13th and 16th century AD. At this time the emergence of ‘Prem Bhakti’ (devotion through love) had a powerful influence on Kathak. Radha and Krishna stories became an integral theme for the Kathak dancers, as well as childhood stories of Krishna. 

During the reign of the Mughal Emperors, Kathak underwent a transformation. It was adapted to reflect the tastes of the Mughal courts in the 16th and 17th century. The Mughal influences reduced the element of story and emphasised the secular entertainment aspect by increasing the dynamic components such as rhythmical footwork and fast spins. The costumes became more elaborate with more bells worn around the ankles to emphsise rhythm while dancing.

With the spread of British colonial rule in 19th century India, Kathak was one of many Classical Art forms which were discouraged in India. Christian missionaries launched an ‘anti-dance movement’ in 1892. They characterised Kathak as merely a front for courtesans and the development of ‘Nautch girls.’

At Indian Independence, Kathak experienced a dramatic revival as the nationalist movement sought to find its identity in the country’s roots, of which the arts were an important component. Kathak, indeed, became a vital part of the urge to redeicover the nation’s cultural and historical past. 

The Kathak revival embodied both Muslim and Hindu traditions so it became a blend of both cultures. The traditional forms of Kathak according to its particular ‘Gharana’ or lineage  came about due to the linear nature of passing knowledge from guru to ‘shishya’ or disciple. Certain stylistic and technical features began to fossilise and became hallmarks of a particular school, guru or group of teachers. Therefore Kathak is found in three distinct forms, named after the cities where each Kathak dance tradition evolved: Lucknow, Jaipur and Banaras (now Varanasi).

Kathak Dance is currently studied and practiced all over the world.

The Lucknow Gharana of Kathak is at the core of InspirAsian Dance.