Usiloquy Dance Designs creates traditional and cross-cultural productions of Indian classical dance Bharatanatyam and conducts educational programs.
Usiloquy Dance Designs is the only contemporary Bharatanatyam organization of its kind in the region. It was founded in 2008 by Artistic Director Shaily Dadiala to serve the Greater Philadelphia area’s need for an Indian Classical dance platform. Usiloquy builds bridges between diverse audience communities and the age old dance form that originated in the temples of Southern India.
A typical day of holistic learning and rehearsing for Usiloquy’s dancers consists of stretching, vigorous practice, refinement of technique and theoretical principles.
Bharatanatyam dance form
Dancers / Nartakis
Ankita has been dancing Bharatanatyam for 18 years, training primarily at the Natyabhoomi School of Dance in DC. She completed her Rangapravesham in 2015 and continued to dance, forming the Trishulam Group in Boston. Ankita has danced in several venues including the Kennedy Center, National Cherry Blossom Festival, and the Boston Conservatory. She also enjoys exploring other dance forms, including Bhangra, ballet, and salsa. As she continues Bharatanatyam she hopes to use movement as a lens to critically reflect upon the dance form and the diaspora experience.
Antima completed her Arangetram in 2003 in Connecticut, through Smt. Padmini Ramachandran’s school at the Middletown Hindu Temple. After that, she did advanced courses with Smt. Narthaki Nataraj. In college, Antima was one of the lead dancers for her school’s classical dance team: Samhati Dance. While working in Boston, Antima learned from Smt. Nina Gulati where she was exposed to Kuchipudi and Odissi and performed with Triveni Dance. Once she moved down to the Tri-state area, she was part of NrityaCreations for several years as a Bharatnatyam and semi-classical dancer. She’s performed in Naya Andaz, at the NJ Performing Arts Center, Atlantic City Convention Center, Sixers halftime show, Madison Square Garden, and even appeared in a Malaysian music video. Presently, Antima teaches an advanced Bollywood choreography class through Philly Dance Fitness and continues to perform in Philadelphia, New York, and New Jersey. During the day, Antima works as an attorney in Philadelphia and was recently named in the National Top 40 Under 40 Trial Attorneys.
Anusha learned Bharatanatyam as a child in the Thanjavur style for 9 years in Chennai. During her undergraduate years at NIT Trichy, she performed as a classical dancer in the Eastern dance troupe for three and a half years. By her senior year in 2018, she was leading the Indian classical and Western dance troupe, including administrative work. Incorporating folk and classical styles, she performed as a soloist and part of the ensemble in Chennai and Bangalore at several intercollegiate competitions. She has begun performing with Usiloquy since August 2022 while pursuing her doctorate at UPenn.
Meghna began her dance journey in 2003 learning Kuchipudi from Shri Raja Reddy and Smt. Radha Reddy at the Natya Tarangini Dance Institute in New Delhi. After that she continued her studies with Smt. Manju Bhargavi in Bangalore until 2010 and then learned Bharatanatyam for a couple of years from Smt. Usha Prabhakar. She performed with her dance schools and at events organized by the Ministry of Cultural Affairs and Air Force in India. She returned to learning and performing with Usiloquy in 2021 while pursuing her doctoral studies in Philadelphia.
During her early education in South India, Aney received training in Mohiniyattam, one of Kerala’s traditional dance forms. She performed folk style dances, including Thiruvathira, Oppana, and Kolkadi in school kalolsavams. After high school, she moved to United States where she studied modern dance at Temple University and has performed semi classical Indian dances in cultural festivals. A passion for dance has followed Aney all throughout her life. Though Mohiniyattam is still close to her heart, she returned to dance in 2013 learning and performing Bharatanatyam with Usiloquy.
Meena began dancing Kuchipudi under Nilimma Devi at the Sutradhar Institute of Dance and Related Arts in 2005. After moving to New York in 2009, she transitioned to learning Bharatanatyam under Dr. Nailini Rau at the Natya Anubhava Academy of Classical Dance. She completed her Arangetram in 2015 and danced with Natya Anubhava until 2017. At Swarthmore College, Meena continued to study dance, branching out into styles like modern, ballet, hip hop, jazz, West African, and more. She graduated with a major in Environmental Studies and a double minor in Religion and Dance. She is a choreographer and multi-media artist who has performed her works at notable venues such as the United Nations, the Paradise Factory Theatre, David Cooper Black Box Theatre, and Kun-Yang Lin's CHI Movement Art Center. She is interested in spiritual healing and community building through the arts and hopes to explore this by connecting back to her roots in Bharatanatyam.
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Usiloquy Dance Designs
Philadelphia, PA 19125