Classical styles of dance embody a discipline that provides the basis for experimentation and elaboration. Odissi and Bharatanatyam
vary greatly in form and content - Bharatanatyam symbolized by geometric lines and distinct postures, and Odissi - by fluidity,
sensuousness, grace and charm.
Chitra Shankar, as a student of these two different forms, exemplifies
the entire range of emotions, styles and substance of dance. Bringing to life the mystique and magic of Bharatanatyam and
Odissi, Chitra is an artist of rare talent, caliber and beauty.
Chitra's fascination with dance began
early. Her formative years were spent in imbibing the discipline of Bharatanatyam under the expert tutelage of Kalaimamani
Smt. Saroja Vaidyanathan. After developing an in-depth understanding of the Pandanallur style of dance, she has widened here
repertoire by exploring and experimenting with the Kalakshetra style, currently learning with Vishwakala Bharathi Smt. Neila
Sathyalingam, in Singapore.
Her exposure to the subtle, fluidic and sensuous styles of Odissi brought
about a fascinating twist in her career. She learnt the nuances of this style under Guru Sri Hare Krishna Behera, further
embellished and strengthened by association and learning with Padmashri Ms. Madhavi Mudgal.
thus, brings forth a most pleasing visual experience of both these dance forms with unmatched brilliance honed by long years
of training and practice. Original interpretations of rare compositions and exquisite renditions of traditional ones are
Chitra's skills, performances and experience have brought her significant laurels in India
and abroad. She is among the few artistes empanelled with the Indian Council for Cultural Relations (ICCR). On the ICCR
panel, she toured Sri Lanka in 1991 for performances showcasing Indian Dance in the International arena.
and above these, she has also conducted some very successful performance tours in Kuwait, Singapore, Japan and now Indonesia.
With an excellent academic background, which helped her gain greater exposure to another facet of art - textile
design, Chitra enmeshed the experience and training from Dance and textile design to create her own identity and niche with
"Chitrakala". The vibrant colors, the stark patterns, the beautiful mix of traditional designs woven wonderfully
together are testimony to the engagement of the arts. Chitrakala was among the preferred suppliers to some of the top fashion
houses and retailers in New Delhi, Madras and Bangalore. Chitra's designs are also sold in Singapore, Japan and USA.
Chitra is currently based in Singapore and continues her journey through the world of dance and music with intensive
training and rewarding teaching experience.
Chitra's students in Singapore and Japan represent the true universal
appeal of Dance. A quick study of her students reveals the universal nature of dance and its appeal across barriers of race,
profession and background. Students include those of Chinese, Malay, Sri Lankan, Indian or Thai origin from different strata
of economic well-being lawyers, software professionals, students and social workers.