Academic Schedule

We have three terms per year – Fall (Sep-Dec), Spring (Jan-May), and Summer (Jun-Aug). Our Annual Student Showcase takes place in the Fall term, on or around Vijaya-Dashami. If a student misses a class, they are expected to check in to keep up with class material. They may make up class by attending another class of the same level or below, with the understanding that other classes may be learning other choreography. Private classes may be purchased for $80/hr, based on the teacher's availability. 

Curriculum

Our Academy has five standard levels of study and two advanced levels. Each level typically takes a minimum of 1.5 years to complete, but can take as long as 3 years. Students move at their own pace and are monitored by Shachi each term to make sure they are placed in the appropriate class. Every student learns differently, and all students go through different phases of development – peaks and valleys in growth and motivation are normal!

Classes have a high level of expectation in terms of discipline and practice. Though it can feel challenging to develop a regular practice routine, students have the most fun when they are prepared for class, feel a sense of achievement, and and are ready to take on new material. We HIGHLY recommend that you find a regular, distraction-free time, before or after school/work to practice every day. 

Standard Levels:

Level 1

Level 2

Level 3

Level 4

Level 5

Advanced Levels: 

Level 5 (Arangetram)

Level 6 (Post-Arangetram)

Questions?

Click to read our FAQs

Level 1 Curriculum
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Class Commitment 

  • 60-min technique class, once per week

  • 15-20 min of daily, focused practice

Movement Technique 

  • Namaskar

  • Basic positions of arms, legs, and body

  • Basic exercises

  • Adavus (Tatta, Naata, Kuditta-meti, Teermaana (tripataaka & back), Tati-meti)​

  • Hastas (Asamyuta, Samyuta)

Theory

  • Origins of Bharathanatyam

  • Members of the Carnatic orchestra

  • Recite 4 invocatory shlokas (Gajananam Bhoota Ganadi, Aangikam Bhuvanam, Guru Mantra, Saraswati Namastubhyam)

  • Count at 4 speeds with simple clap

Choreography

  • 4 Shlokas

 
Level 2 Curriculum
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Class Commitment 

  • 60-min technique class, once per week

  • 20-25 min of daily, focused practice

  • May additionally attend Adavu Practice & Basic Theory classes

Movement Technique 

  • Intermediate exercises 

  • Anga Bhedas

  • Adavus (Teermaana (pataaka, taa-hata-jhum), Kutta, Sarikal, Etta)

  • Hastas (Pataaka vinyoga)

Theory

  • Clapping aadi taalam and counting at 4 speeds

  • Basic korvai chart

  • Navarasa 

  • Forms of Indian classical dance 

  • Carnatic vs Hindustani orchestra

Choreography

  • Beginner Abhinaya piece (Kirtanam, Bhajan, etc)

  • Invocatory piece (Anjali, Pushpanjali, Kauthuvam, etc)

  • Alarippu

 
Level 3 Curriculum
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Class Commitment 

  • 90-min technique class, once per week 

  • Adavu Practice (30 min), minimum once per week 

  • Dance Theory (60 min) once per week

  • 25-30 minutes of daily, focused practice 

  • May attend additional Adavu Practice classes

  • May audition for Junior Company

Movement Technique 

  • Intermediate exercises & basic yoga

  • Anga Bhedas

  • Sharira Upaangas 

  • Adavus (Paichal, Mandi)

Theory

  • Banis of Bharatanatyam

  • Renowned dancers and musicians  

  • Items in the Bharatanatyam Maargam

  • Basics of Sapta-taala system

  • Aadi taalam korvai recitation with clap

Choreography

  • Intermediate Nritya piece (Shabdam, Kirtanam, etc)

  • Jatiswaram 

  • Beginner level Indo-Contemporary piece

 
Level 4 Curriculum

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Class Commitment 

  • 90-min technique class, once per week 

  • Adavu Practice (30 min), minimum once per week 

  • Dance Theory (60 min) once per week 

  • 30-35 minutes of daily, focused practice 

  • May attend additional Adavu Practice classes

  • May audition for Junior Company

Movement Technique 

  • Strength training & beginner yoga

  • Mukhaja Upaangas 

  • Adavu combinations & jatis

  • Intermediate Indo-Contemporary movement

Theory

  • Basic composition & choreography

  • Common Bharatanatyam themes (naayikaa preparing, depictions of nature, Hindu pantheon, bhakti)

Choreography

  • Advanced expressive pieces (Padam, Javali, etc)

  • Varnam

  • Thillana

  • Intermediate Indo-Contemporary piece

 
Level 5 Curriculum

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Class Commitment 

  • 90-min technique class, once per week 

  • Adavu Practice (30 min), minimum once per week 

  • 25-30 minutes of daily, focused practice 

  • May attend additional Adavu Practice and Dance Theory classes

  • May audition for Junior Company

Movement Technique 

  • Advanced jatis

  • Advanced Indo-Contemporary Technique

Theory

  • Exploration of Varnams

  • Ashtanayika 

Choreography

  • Advanced pieces from maargam

  • Advanced Indo-Contemporary pieces

Additional Opportunities

  • Junior Company (audition required)

  • Advanced Technique Exploration (Indo-Contemporary, Kathak)

 
Level 5 (Arangetram – audition required)

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Pre-requisites  

  • Successful completion of Technique Levels 1-4

  • Successful completion of Dance Theory Levels 1 & 2

Class Commitment 

  • Private classes 2x/week – 11 months

  • Adavu Practice minimum 1x/week

  • Private classes 4x/week in final (12th) month, plus 1 week of daily rehearsal with musicians 

  • 45-60 minutes daily practice

Movement Technique 

  • Intermediate yoga

  • Adavu refinement

  • Intermediate Indo-Contemporary movement

Theory

  • Semi-guided choreography (nritta & abhinaya)

  • Ashtanayikaa

Choreography

  • Maargam specially chosen for your Arangetram (combination of new and reworked pieces)

Additional Opportunities

  • Junior Company (audition required)

  • Advanced Technique Exploration (Indo-Contemporary, Kathak)

 
Level 6 (Post-Arangetram)

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Pre-requisites  

  • Successful completion of Arangetram

Class Commitment 

  • 90-min technique class, once/week – focused on advanced pieces, student choreography, and thematic exploration

  • 30-min Adavu practice, minimum once/week 

Additional Opportunities

  • Junior Company 

  • Professional Company (audition required)

  • Advanced Technique Exploration (Indo-Contemporary, Kathak, Nritta-Karanas)

  • Teaching Assistantship (interview & training period required)