DANCER, Musician, visual artist
Ramya S. Kapadia is a Knoxville-based Bharatanatyam dancer, choreographer, instructor and a Carnatic vocalist (restructured and codified forms of dance & music from South India). Ramya has toured all over the United States & abroad to present solo & group works. She regularly provides vocal accompaniment to dancers around the world and composes and produces music for their works.
Ramya has Master’s degrees in Medical Physics and Neuroscience and pursues the arts full time now. She runs the Natyarpana School of Dance & Music in Durham, NC and Knoxville, TN, through which she shares the rich traditions of Carnatic music and Bharatanatyam across the USA. She served as the Associate Artistic and Outreach Director of Maryland-based Prakriti Dance until 2021and free-lances as singer/nattuvangam artist/dancer with the Ragamala Dance Company, MN.
She received the Ella Pratt Emerging Artist Award from the Durham Arts Council in 2010, the Choreography Fellowship from the North Carolina Dance Alliance in 2016 and an Artist Support Grant from the NC Arts Council in 2020. She received a Public Space Project award from Downtown Durham Inc. and the City of Durham which resulted in the creation of a mural in the Warli style of art. (one of the tribal art forms of Western India). She is on the Advisory Committee of the “Dance at the Van Dyke” series at Greensboro Dance Project which seeks to present the works of local, national and international artists.
Ramya has been a long-time Teaching Artist with the Durham and United Arts Councils and Arts Access in North Carolina. Through these affiliations, she is continuing research to integrate the principles of her 2000-year old form with the STEAM curriculum in schools, emphasizing accessibility to children with special needs.
Ramya believes that art can and should tell stories that move audiences to becoming better and more compassionate human beings. The collaborators in her works are artists, scientists, literary scholars and philosophers who all share her vision of creating a better world through art. She is grateful to her many mentors for providing her with rich and varied experiences in the arts.