Shantala Shivalingappa


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Tuesday, April 16
Herbst Theatre




The return of Shantala Shivalingappa [to San Francisco] was easily the fall season’s most anticipated event.

—Dance View Times

excerpt from Namasya



About This Performance

Shantala Shivalingappa brings a captivating, contemporary sensibility to India’s millennia-old theatrical dance form, Kuchipudi, that is no more stunningly evident and arresting than in this new program of works by herself and other dance-makers of our time. Shivalingappa’s long associations with iconic choreographers and directors including Pina Bausch and Peter Brook has fueled her rapid rise in the West and inspired a new global dance generation with its compellingly classical roots and “witty charm”. (The New York Times)

This performance is made possible in part through the generous support of Christian Jessen.

Artist Biography

Born in Madras, India, brought up in Paris, Shantala Shivalingappa is the child of east and west. She grew up in a world filled with dance and music, initiated at a tender age by her mother, dancer Savitry Nair.

Deeply moved and inspired by Master Vempati Chinna Satyam's pure and graceful style, Shantala dedicated herself to Kuchipudi, and received an intense and rigorous training from her master. Driven by a deep desire to bring Kuchipudi to the western audience, she has performed in important festivals and theatres, earning praise and admiration from all.

Acclaimed as a rare dancer by artists and connoisseurs the world over, Shantala combines a perfect technique with flowing grace and a very fine sensitivity. Since the age of 13, she also had the privilege of working with some of the greatest artists of our times: Maurice Béjart (1789…et nous), Peter Brook (for whom she played Miranda in The Tempest and Ophelia in Hamlet), Bartabas (Chimère), Pina Bausch (O Dido, Néfès, Bamboo Blues and Sacre du Printemps), Ushio Amagatsu (Ibuki).

Such experiences make her artistic journey a truly unique one.

Today, Shantala shares her time between touring, expanding her choreographic work in the Kuchipudi style, and collaborating with various artists in the exploration of dance, music and theatre.


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