Smt. Vinitha Subramanian, Director
Vinitha Subramanian began her dancing career at the tender age of four under the tutelage of Thirukoshtiyur Nagarathna Ammal. She then went on to be trained in the Thirukoshtiyur and Pandanainallur styles under Shri Radhakrishnan of Bangalore and Madurai S. Jayaraman, She also received a year of Kathakali training under Shri Manoharan, She has given performances in diverse cities as Ahmedabad, Calcutta, Tirupati, and all over Tamilnadu. After moving to Texas, she founded Natyalaya School of Dance in 1982. Since then, she has taken scores of students through margam training, culminating in their arangetrams. Many of her students have gone on to make their own marks in the field of dance. She also has several dance dramas to her credit: “Prahala Bhakthi Vijayam,” “Nauka Charitram,” “Two faces of Shiva,” “Aaru Padai Veedu,” “Raja Rajeshwari,” “Ganga – A River’s story,” and “Navahavarna – Colors of Number Nine.” Under her direction Natyalaya has grown to over 90 students with branches in Austin, Temple, and College Station.
Kanaka Sathasivan, Associate Director
Kanaka Sathasivan started learning dance under the tutelage of Smt. Vinitha Subramanian at the age of seven, completing her Arangetram in 1999. She continued her instruction with a number of acclaimed artists and has learned both Mohaniattam under Kalamandalam Radhika, and Kuchipudi under Vaijaynthi Kashi. She has also been trained in Nattuvangam under P. Narendra Kumar and D.V. Prasanna Kumar. She has performed all over Texas as well as in Tamil Nadu. While completing her studies at the University of Texas, she performed with Nritya Sangam, an award-winning classical dance troupe. Kanaka began teaching at Natyalaya in 2000. Over more than 15 years, she has taught students from age 4 to age 60 as well as performed in and choreographed a number of productions in the Austin area. As Associate Director, she coordinates the lighting and management of Natyalaya productions, including co-directing five productions. She also does stage management for Bharathanatyam and theater productions through her company Natya Sabhai Arts.
Gayathri Iyer, Associate Director
Gayathri Iyer has learned dance from the age of 5 under Guru Sudha Maheshwari in New Delhi and performed her Arangetram at the age of 11. She continued her training under Guru Archita Mehta, a post graduate from Kalakshetra at Sangeet Bharati School of Dance in New Delhi. Gayathri has traveled to Singapore and Malaysia as part of a cultural tour and participated in several dance dramas. She was also actively involved in fund-raising through dance for the Austin Hindu temple.
Sandhya Pillai started her bharathanatyam training under Guru Vivekananda and mohiniyattam training under Guru Muralidharan. In 2010 she joined Natyalaya as an instructor. She has given many performances and very active in cultural activities happening in and around Austin.
Vanitha Dorairaj has learned Dance from the age of 5 under Guru Smt. Kalpagam Jayaraman, from Mylapore, Chennai, India. She was trained in Vazhuvoor Bani and performed her Arangetram when she was 11yrs. She moved to Boston in 1999 where she had her school for teaching Bharathanatyam. Vanitha moved to Texas and underwent training under Smt. Vinitha Subramanian in Pandanallur Style in 2009. She has participated in Natyalaya productions, Temple and other social events cultural performances. She is currently part of Natyalaya Teachers Performance Group.
Sindhura Sridhar is a third-year biomedical engineering student at the University of Texas at Austin. Sindhura has been studying bharatanatyam, an Indian classical dance style, for over 14 years. Under the tutelage of Guru Vinitha Subramanian, director of the Natyalaya School of Dance, Sindhura has given many performances and has been a part of multiple dance productions, such as Seonee: The Jungle Book. In 2015, Sindhura completed her arangetram, or graduation performance, and has now been teaching at Natyalaya for over 4 years. Sindhura directed the Natyalaya production Sangeeta Devata Mochanam, and was the assistant director of the Natyalaya production Ganga: A River’s Story. Sindhura is also an associate at Natya Sabhai Arts, and has been a stage manager, lighting designer, and lighting technician for numerous shows and dance productions.
Shragvi Balaji started dance lessons at the age of 4, from Smt. Pavithra Ramadoss. At the age of 8, she began learning from Smt. Vinitha Subramanian and since then, she has participated in various productions such as Junglebook, Agastya, and more. She conducted her arangetram in July 2017 and currently teaches at Natyalaya. She also learns Carnatic music from Sri Prasanna Venkatesh Soundarajan and was part of Agni, a Bollywood dance company. She is very passionate about dancing and singing. She also loves visiting with hospice patients, playing outside, and spending time with friends and family.