Akademi has been working for over 40 years at the heart of South Asian dance in the UK. We’ve had an amazing journey coming to where we are today.

Akademi was founded by Tara Rajkumar OAM in 1979 as Academy of Indian Dance. Under the leadership of a succession of dynamic directors – Tara Rajkumar OAM, Bharati Kansara, John Chapman, Pushkala Gopal, Naseem Khan OBE and Mira Kaushik OBE – Akademi flourished. We are now a leading producer of South Asian dance in the UK.

In January 2020, Subathra Subramaniam was appointed as Artistic Director and Kirsten Burrows as Executive Director; and both as Joint‑CEOs.

Explore our journey through images from the archive.


Explore our journey through our archives

Akademi has a wealth of archival material documenting the organisation’s work and the history of South Asian dance in the UK, including footage, images, journals and reports.

In December 2019, The National Lottery Heritage Fund awarded us £98,700 to archive 40 years of our South Asian dance heritage in the UK at the Victoria and Albert Museum. This 13-month project with the V&A, from December 2019 to December 2020, explored the evolution and impact of Akademi in the UK. As a result of the project, Akademi Chronicles was created, outlining the milestone moments in Akademi’s journey. Further material is stored in the South Asian Diaspora Archives.

Collection of flyers, programmes and photographs

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