Share Your Thoughts

India Currents gave me a voice in days I was very lost. Having my articles selected for publishing was very validating – Shailaja Dixit, Executive Director, Narika, Fremont

The Rangoli Foundation and Rangoli Dance Company will celebrate the 25th anniversary of the foundation with bharatanatyam dances, followed by “Shivaya,” a new dance concert by the foundation’s creator and choreographer, Malathi Iyengar. Also included is a specially commissioned Chhau dance, a traditional dance depicting nature and ecstatic, dancing peacocks. A reception will be held after each performance.

“To celebrate 25 years of producing and performing, we are presenting classics from our original repertoire, guest performances and exciting and compelling new choreographic works and music,” Iyengar says. “They portray Indian culture and stories in exhilarating classical and folk dances inspired by life in India.”


Iyengar created the nonprofit Rangoli Foundation in 1985 to present classical Indian music and dance performances. She founded the Rangoli Dance Company (RDC) seven years later after taking dance lessons beside her then-6-year-old daughter and going on to secure a master’s degree in choreography from UCLA. The company has gone on to become a noted Los Angeles Indian dance company.

“Shivaya” pays tribute to the elements (earth, water, fire, air, and space), five sacred syllables and the universe’s sound, stillness, and movement. Recorded music was composed and arranged by Indian musician Rajkumar Bharathi. Chhau dance was choreographed by Murali Mohan K., with music composed by D. Praveen Rao from India.

The bharatanatyam showcase is accompanied by live music performed by Krishna Kutty (violin) and musicians from India, including Nandakumar U., Gurumurthy G., and Prakash Hegde, conducted by Iyengar.

The RDC dancers are accompanied by Indian dancers Renjith Babu, Krishna Chari, Murali Mohan K., Kirti Ramgopal,  Parshwanath Upadhye, and longtime Rangoli collaborators Ronald Burton and Navia Natarajan.
“Shivaya: 25 Years of Creativity and Excellence” is supported in part by the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors through the Los Angeles County Arts Commission.

Saturday, Aug. 28, 5 p.m. bharatanatyam; Shivaya 7 p.m.  Nate Holden Performing Arts Center, 4718 W. Washington Blvd., Los Angeles. $20-$50. Tickets: (323) 964-9766;; Sunday, Aug. 29, 4 p.m. bharatanatyam; Shivaya 6 p.m. Scherr Forum Theatre, Thousand Oaks Civic Arts Plaza, 2100 E. Thousand Oaks Blvd., Thousand Oaks. $20-$50. Tickets: (805) 449-2787; Info: (818) 384-1954;

Vandana Kumar is a publishing executive with a 35-year track record in the industry. She leads the India Currents Foundation as President and CEO. As a new immigrant, she co-founded India Currents magazine...