How popular is Kathak dance in Russia?

Kathak competes with other Indian classical dance styles for an audience in Russia

On Mar. 2 the Indian Embassy in Moscow along with the Nritya Sabha Foundation of Indian Cultural Heritage Studies hosted a Kathak dance concert that brought together many choreographers and fans of this Indian classical dance style. The performers traced back the history of the development of Kathak in India and treated their audience to a taste of Indian culture in the very heart of Moscow.

Due to a simple costume and the complexity of learning the dance form, Kathak’s popularity ranks low when compared to other Indian classical dance forms in Russia.

Nevertheless, the number of people learning and performing Kathak remains pretty much stable. According to Ashwani Nigam, a Kathak teacher at Jawaharlal Nehru Cultural Centre (JNCC) in Moscow, the number of students attending his classes has not changed in  the recent past. The centre gets around 15 to 20 students per class.

Tatiana Nazarova, art director at Nritya Sabha and Kathak performer, agrees  that Kathak is not that popular as Bharatnatyam. She, however, feels that boosting its popularity is possible by increasing the number of concerts and workshops around the country.

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