Illicit Worlds of Indian Dance (2016)

A unique evening celebrating the world of India’s female and queer dancers.

First presented at Rich Mix, Friday 9 September 2016. 

Ethnomusicology professor Anna Morcom’s fieldwork became the impetus behind a specially curated event of dance, film and narration exploring the forces of inclusion/ exclusion that have shaped Indian performing arts over the last century.

Akademi is committed to encouraging the understanding and appreciation of all South Asian dance in the UK, including that of marginalised and underground communities which are known but hardly acknowledged, let alone understood. Yet this culture is important part of the history of Indian classical dance and music.

The event featured performances by Kathak artists Natalia Hildner, Raheem Mir and British born Japanese Bollywood artist Emiko Ishii. A finale was performed by Britain’s first gay Muslim drag act, Asifa Lahore and Leela Ek Paheli.

“Akademi  leads us into some of the art form’s more secretive byways… Much food for reflection here. A fascinating detour.”

Luke Jennings, Reviewer, The Observer


Creative Team

Artist Development and Productions: Nina Head
LightingStuart Walton

Media Credits

ImagesSimon Richardson
Video editParbati Chaudhury

Supported by

Arts Council England, Rich Mix, Wise Thoughts, Fazz PR and Events 

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