exponent of Kathak Dance - the dancer with a lyrical charm
here for more
photos of Purnima Jha
was invited to the U.S. by the Inter-Nation Music Center of San Diego in 1979.
In 1980, she was presented by Maestro Ali Akbar Khan in San Francisco and has
performed numerous concerts throughout Northern California. Her tours have
brought her to Sacramento, Seattle, Baltimore, Los Angeles, Washington D.C.,
Germany, India, Canada, and Hong Kong. Since the early 1980's Purnima has served
as a Research Associate for the Center of Asian Studies at the University of
California at Berkeley, and as a faculty member at the East Bay Center for
Performing Arts. 1n 1998, Purnima was awarded the National Intellectual Honor of
India for lifetime achievement in the performing arts.
As inheritor of both styles of classical North Indian tradition, Purnima Jha is
a foremost exponent of both the softer, fluid, more expressive Lucknow, and the
rhytmically controlled dynamic Jaipur styles of Kathak dance. Trained by her
father, Shanker Dev Jha, legendary dancer and primary guru of Kathak dance, she
carries on a dance lineage that traces back 2,500 years. She lives this legacy
by sharing the movements, legend, and philosophies of this art form through the
ancient discipline her father passed on to her. At the age of four her first
performance was before the Dalai Lama of Tibet. As a young adult she performed
and taught throughout India developing a reputation as the heiress of Kathak
dance. Indian National Television broadcasted a documentary film of her
performance of Kathak dance for public, educational, historical and archival
purposes - an honor seldom bestowed on dancers.
charmed the audience by her memorable dance performance at the WBF Annual Convention at New Jersey
in August 2K4.