The category of South Asian dance is a broad one. It is a term that only takes on meaning in diaspora. Resilient and adaptable, South Asian dance forms have the capacity to transform and yet to retain formal elements that remain identifiable. Chennai, Jaffna, London and Los Angeles are global centres of South Asian dance practice with distinct characteristics deriving from different emphases on traditional, classical, innovative and experimental approaches.
From bharatanatyam to bollywood, South Asian dance forms are being practiced and celebrated nation-wide. Here, Cynthia Brett has gathered a diverse representation of Canadian-based practitioners of these and related forms. The article gestures toward the range and diversity within this community in Canada.