Pandita Uma Dogra [Kathak Exponent, Guru and Choreographer.
Uma Dogra, a Kathak exponent is a one of the most powerful and compelling dancer of India today. Honoured as "Pandita" Uma Dogra is The senior most Ganda Bandh Shahgird of Late Pt. Durga Lalji of the Jaipur Gharana. Uma Dogra has been enthralling the audiences all over India and abroad for more than Thirty five(35) years now. For her great contribution as a Dancer, Teacher and choreographer has been conferred with “Maharashtra Sanskriti State Award” by the Govt. of Maharashtra in 2009.
Endowed with a fascinating personality and highly imaginative mind, she brings to Kathak not only a mastery of technique that is fruit of a thought and meticulous training, but a total involvement in dance. a profound confidence and a joyous spontaneity that infuses her performanc with rare intensity and authority.
Born in a distinguished family with a rich cultural heritage, Uma was initiated into the field of art of Kathak when she was barely seven years old.
She had her early training in Lucknow school of Kathak under Smt. Reba Vidyarathi at Kathak Kendra, New Delhi. Her quest of enriching her art with the technique of the Jaipur School led her to the leading light of Jaipur Gharana Pt. Durga Lalji.
The vigorous training under the exacting eye of her celebrated Guru moulded her into an artist of rare individuality and exquisite taste. Through the very nature of her training, Uma combines in her art the delicacies and daintiness of the Lucknow as well as the vigour of alacrity of Jaipur Gharanas. Having imbibed from her Gurus the best of both traditions she has successfully enriched it with the stamp of her own personality- thus creating a style that is authentic and distinctly her own.
Uma Dogra´s perception of dance has also been enriched by her study of vocal under her father Pt. Motiram Sharma who was a Sitar player, has helped her explore the ideal of Dance as visual music. Uma´s dance is very traditional and classical but at the very same time a language of strong self expression.
While performing Abroad in Uma Dogra has also taken workshops in Sydney and Melbourne in Australia, Japan, Spain, France, USSR, London, New Castel in UK, University of Alberta in Canada, University of Florida Gainsvile and Standford University, University of Los Angeles, Dallas Chhandam School of Dance in San Francisco and Chicago in USA. Uma was appointed as a Dance teacher for Pt Jasraj School of Music in Atlanta USA.
She is the founder and Managing Trustee of Samved Society for performing Arts. From last 22 years Uma is promoting the Art and the Artists by organizing “Pt. Durgalal Festival ” and “Raindrops Festival of Indian Classical Dance” in Mumbai and different cities of India. Under Samved’s banner Uma is Running kathak School and has trained many young beautiful dancers.
Uma Dogra is affiliated with University of Pune and University of Vadodara as an examiner for the last 7 years. And also visited and performed for University of Florida and University of Los Angeles and Stanford University in USA and has been promoting Indian classes dance in the best of her capacity. She is also an enlisted artist on the panel of ICCR.
Uma Dogra is associated with the making of several films on Dance.
Nritya Bharti – by Dr. Kanak Rele Kamayani – by Films Division of India Classical dances of India – by Rizvi Foundation “Nirwana Through Dance “ Uma Dogra made a film on her guru Pt. Durga Lalji.
Writer : In praise of Kathak – A book by Uma Dogra- compilation of many article on and about Kathak
Major festivals in India and Abroad
In the last Four years, Uma Dogra has been invited to perform at the following prominent festivals in India.
1. Khajuraho Dance Festival - Madhya Pradesh
2. Ustad Alluuddin Khan Sangeet Nritya Utsav - Betul
3. Pt. Motiram Sangeet Samaroh - Hydrabad
4. Pt. Gopikrishna Festival- Nashik
5. Pt. Kumar Gandharva Samaroh - Devas
1. Guru Kelucharan Mohapatra Award Function - Orissa
2. Konark Festival - Orissa
3. Kala Ghoda Arts Festival - Mumbai
4. Vetva Festival - Madhya Pradesh
5. Golden Jubilee Haridas Sammelan - Mumbai
6. Baba Allaudin Khan Sangeet Mahotsav - Maihar, MP
7. Sangeet Natak Akademi - Manipur
8. Guru Purnima Mahotsav - Mumbai
9. Times of India Festival - Ahmedabad
10. Bharat Bhawan 25 years Celebration - Bhopal, MP
11. Kathak Mahotsav of, Kathak Kendra - Mumbai
12. Ekjute Theatre Group’s Silver Jubilee Celebration - Mumbai
1. Times of India Festival - New Delhi
2. Jaipur Kathak Kendra Kathak Festival - jaipur
3. Bandra Festival - Mumbai
4. Ekakaar Ensemble of Odissi and Kathak - Bhartiya Vidya Bhavan - Mumbai
1. Nehru Centre’s Festival of Dance - Mumbai
2. Vasatotsava for Kalashram - New Delhi
3. Naitanjali Chidambaram Festival - Chennai
4. Performed with British Music composer Karl Jenkins Asia’s Premier show for NCPA’s Symphony Orchestra Mumbai
5. Brahan Natyanjali Festival Thanjavur Temple - Chenna
6. “Bansuri” dance prouction for Bhartiya Vidya Bhavan. - Mumbai
7. Workshop and performance nritya niketan- coimbtore
1. Inaugural programe of Film Festival by Film Division.- Mumbai
2. Performed in 20th Pt. Durgalal Festival. –Mumbai
3. Acharya Parvati Kumar’s 90th Birthday celebration Navatisamvatsara Mahotsav- Mumbai
4. ‘Anusaran”A humble offering in memory of Guru Kelucharan Mohapatra.- Mumbai
5. Festival of Prabhupada Sampurna Kala Paksh by Bhakti Kala Kshetra. –Mumbai
6. Performed for Jammu & Kashmir Art Academy’s Dance Festival.- Jammu
7. Performed in Nadam Dance Festival. – Banglore
8. Performed for Udayan- Mumbai
9. Performed for Madhya Pradesh Sahitya Kala Parished- Bhopal
10. Performed in the Celebration of Samved society’s 20th year – Pune
11. Dance performance in pt. Durgalal Festival—Nagpur- Mumbai
1. Performed Ekatatva for Natrani—Ahemdabad
2. Production Ekatatva for Shankhya—Pune
3. Performed for Habitat BSL Series – New Delhi
4. Performed for Kathak Kendra Mahotsav in memory of Pt. Durgalalji- New Delhi
5. Guru Kartik Kumar Smiriti Samaroh—Bhopal
6. 17th Guru Kelucharan Mahopatra Award Programe--- Bhubneshwar
7. Gati Gayand and Ekatatva for Nathinal Centre For Performing Arts—Mumbai
8. Gati Gayand and Ekatatva for Homi Bhabha Institute of Science – Mumbai
9. Kathak performance with disciples – Pt. Durgalal Festival Nehru centre Mumbai
The last Four years have also seen Uma Dogra perform abroad.
1. Performed and conduced a two-day workshop for University of Florida, Gainesville.
2. Performed in London for Nehru Centre, Luton for Kadam Asian Dance & Music
3. Danced for Surdhwani in Wolverhmpton
4. Saddler’s Wells Theatre Dance Festival in London UK.
1. Performed in Indian Council for Cultural Relations Festival of India held in Japan.
2. Performed and held workshops in different cities across USA.
1. Performed for The Min-On Concert Association Japan across the country. 2008
2. A month-long tour of Australia covering cities like Melbourne and Sydney and New Castle.
3. Performed at University of Los Angeles and other cities of USA.
Performed for Allarakha Foundation in London 2009. UK.
Performed for Kala Premi Organization in New Castle 2009.UK
Performed in International Kathak Festival in ChicagoUniversity. USA
1. As examiner for Sharda Sahai institution in London and held workshop. UK
2. Took workshop for Dance city students in Newcastle and performed. UK
3. Performed for Stanford University in San Francisco and took workshop. USA
4. Performed for Natya Dance Festival in Chicago. USA
1. Performed for Saraswati Arts in Holland
2. Workshop for Natraya Kathak School- Medrid Spain.
3. Workshop in Paris for Sharmila Sharma’s Dance School
4. Ekatatva Dance Production In Dallas USA
5. Workshop in Dallas
6. Kathak Solo Performance for Chhandam School of Dance in San Francisco USA
7. Workshop for Nupur and Kathakaar’s School of Kathak in San Francisco USA
8. Ekatatva Dance Production for SPICMACAY Stanford San Francisco USA