Our mission is to inspire audiences and change lives by creating and nurturing excellence in classical, contemporary, popular and participatory South Asian dance.
Founded in 1979 by the legendary Tara Rajkumar, Akademi has been taking South Asian dance to unexpected places ever since. In that time, we have redefined the parameters of the art form itself. We have inspired audiences, developed artists and changed lives. Our passion burns brighter than ever.
We are dynamic and future facing. We connect South Asian dance with the wider contemporary arts sector. We engage with social, political and cultural agendas to achieve real impact. We embrace the plurality of classical, contemporary and commercial South Asian dance styles.
Rooted in our local community but active across the UK, we have a global perspective with worldwide connections. Our pioneering work contributes significantly to Britain’s international reputation for innovation in South Asian dance.
Our work encompasses:
We actively push the boundaries of where dance can appear. We are passionate about performing in unexpected settings. Our productions embrace and are inspired by extraordinary architecture and public spaces. We also create bespoke performances for private clients.
We support artists to realise their potential. We help develop professional performers, choreographers and cultural leaders. We provide unique opportunities to create and share work, along with access to mentors, advice and networks.
We work with children and young people across London. We inspire creativity, encourage academic achievement and broaden aspirations. Our work improves the health and wellbeing of older adults through dance and movement workshops. We deliver participatory projects in hospitals, care homes and all kinds of community settings.
Akademi is the epitome of creative and cultural fusion, pulling together rich tradition and delicate practice with a robust and contemporary rigour and imagination; equally at home performing in a theatre space or in a marketplace, the work always brings together outstanding skills with an underlying narrative and is delivered with focus and discipline. Akademi reaches out to many people, allowing them to engage in different ways, but consistently offering both quality and accessibility.
Angus MacKechnie, Executive Director ISAN.