About Guru

Mrs. Vijayalakshmi Shetty is a leading Indian classical dance teacher and choreographer in USA. She established Natraj Dance Academy in 1983. The academy soon grew rapidly in strength and has became one of the largest Indian classical dance institutions in and around Chicago. Students of Natraj Dance Academy receive sound training in the practice and theory of Bharatanatyam. After mastering the Bharatanatyam style, students are taught other classical dance styles like Kuchipudi, Mohiniyattam and Odissi.

Vijayalakshmi began her initial training in Bharatanatyam at the age of six from P. G. Chellapa of Chennai. She received advanced training from the late K. N. Dandayudhapani Pillai and his daughter Uma Dandayudhapani Pillai. She received training in Kuchipudi from Dr. Vempati Chinna Satyam, one of the greatest Kuchipudi masters of all times. Vijayalakshmi also received training in Mohiniyattam from P. G. Chellapa. She has performed internationally and received numerous awards. She teaches and choreographs dances in Bharatanatyam, Kuchipudi, Mohiniyattam and Odissi styles of dancing. With over 37 years of teaching experience, she has taught several thousand students in the chicagoland area. She is dedicated to promoting these classical Indian dance styles by keeping the strict traditions of these ancient arts.

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