About

Pragathi Art Foundation is committed to quality dance training in Bharatanaytam with a focus on exploring movement as a unique thought system.

Dr. Elizabeth Kurien heads the Pragathi Arts Foundation. She is a southern California based dance instructor, choreographer and scholar. She is an exponent of two forms of Indian classical dance, Bharatanatyam (Pandanallur Style) and Mohiniyattam (Kalyanikuttiamma Style). Kurien was trained from a very young age under the tutelage of Guru Shyamala Surendran, Dharani School of Performing Arts in Kerala, India. She obtained her Masters in Performing Arts from Central Government University, Hyderabad, India (HCU), and her Ph.D in Critical Dance Studies from University of California, Riverside (UCR). Kurien is the recipient of the Sarojini Naidu Scholarship of Merit (HCU) and the Chancellor’s Award, UCR. Currently, she is the artistic director of Pragathi Arts Foundation, an organization she formed to foster learning, practice, and inquiry in Indian dance, specifically Bharatanatyam. Her vision for her students is that they will be able to push beyond boundaries of cultural expression, and open spaces to explore their personal voices.

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Dr.Elizabeth M Kurien