Subjects & Tutors

Milapfest currently provides courses in the following subjects at different levels:

  • Bharatanatayam
  • Kathak
  • Carnatic Vocal
  • Hindustani Violin
  • Hindustani Vocal
  • Tabla
  • Veena

Please see our dance timetable and/or music timetable for current class dates and timings.

Each class is taught by a professional musician or dancer, many of whom are performing artists themselves. 

Music

Kousic Sen, Tabla

K Sen credit to Paul Jamieson wide cropTabla classes are taught by musical maestro Kousic Sen.  He was born into a musical family in Calcutta, showing tremendous talent for Tabla from a very young age. Trained under his father, Late P.L.Sen, then Pt. Biswanath Bose of the Banaras Gharana, and later under Pt. Kumar Bose, Kousic is a vastly experienced tabla artist, and a master of accompanying dance, fusion and classical music. One of the foremost tabla players of his generations, Kousic Sen is a tabla player whose intense and energetic performances add a new dimension to the traditional concert experience. His rhythmic mastery has become known around the globe through his performances with leading musicians in many of the world’s most famous venues.

Kousic joined Milapfest as Artist in Residence in 2014. His role includes teaching at the weekly Arts School, performances in Milapfest concerts around the UK and his role as Percussion Conductor for Samyo and Tarang.

There are three Tabla sessions ranging from beginner to Grade 1.   Training occurs in small groups, giving each student an opportunity to receive focused one-to-one training with Kousic Sen during each class.   Both practical and theoretical aspects of Tabla are covered in this class.

Ramya Tangirala, Carnatic Vocal (South Indian Style)

RamyaRamya Tangirala comes from a well-known family of musicians. Ramya is the grandniece of the legendary musician Sangita Kalanidhi Sri G.N.Balasubramaniam. Smt Sowmiya, is a well known Hindustani vocalist and visual artist in Chennai. Many of Ramya’s students have performed at various music festivals. Ramya teaches vocals online to students all over UK. In 2015, Ramya’s student won the ‘Yogi Maharaj Trophy’ at the Croydon Music Festival, London.

Ramya is a keen painter – in oil,watercolour and Tanjore Art. She has had her art work exhibited in UK. She also plays the Veena.

There are three Carnatic Vocal sessions for beginner and intermediate students and adults. It is an extremely popular art form learnt in India, particularly in the South.  This class introduces students to the concepts of Raga and Tala – the basic fundamental training needed to learn any form of Indian classical music.  Students will also learn about different patterns, rhythms and compositions used in Carnatic music.

Vijay Rajput, Hindustani Vocal (North Indian Style)

Dr Vijay Rajput will teach Hindustani Vocal in Art-school. He also will deliver light classical music like Bhajan, Gazal and Bollywood music. Dr. Vijay Rajput, Born in new Delhi, India, Dr. Vijay Rajput started Learning Music at a tender of eight. He acquired his initial training and guidance from Pt. M. G. Deshpande, Pt. VinayChander Mudgal and pt. Madhup Mudgal . Subsequently, he had a rare opportunity to learn for many years under the tutelage of world renowned Bharat Ratna Pt. Bhimsen Joshi Ji. He has acquired M.A., M.PHIL., PH.D.Degrees in Hindustani Classical music from the University of Delhi. As a maestro of khayal style of rendition and an artist of international repute, his performances have mesmerized audiences in India and abroad. He has performed in many national and international Sangeet Sammelans festivals and Mahotsave. He got KALA JYOTHI award in 2010 for his excellent contribution in educating and promoting classical music in the North East of England.of South India.

Olivia Moore, Violin

Olivia Moore is one of the UK’s most innovative and creative violinists. She works across a broad spectrum of genres, dedicating herself primarily to jazz and classical Indian music. After giving her first performance at the age of four, she spent her childhood and teen years mastering classical music before going on to explore the art of improvisation. She graduated from the Royal Northern College of Music in 1999; B.Mus (Hons) in Academic Studies (2.1). However, at 21, inspired by a jazz summer school at the Guildhall School of music, she discovered the art of improvisation. This propelled her into a postgraduate diploma at Leeds College of Music (Distinction in 2002). At Leeds, her curiosity drew her to many different styles of music. After graduation she spent two years performing with the Indian fusion band Savateen, playing their own original works. Highlights were the Brno Street festival in the Czech Republic and at the Millennium Park and Birla Temple, in Calcutta. In 2005, she decided to follow her dream by going to India to study with violin maestro Kala Ramnath, which became the first of many visits to the country. Her most recent visit was in 2010.

Prashanthini Shanthakumar

image02Prashanthini is a Veena artiste who has undergone training under the tutelage of Sangeetha Vidwan, Smt Sivatharini Sahadevan from the age of eight. With her guru’s support, she has completed a teaching qualification with the Academy of Fine Arts London and has been teaching in London for the past 8 years. She is also a keen Bharathanatyam dancer and completed her Arangetram under the tutelegae of  Smt. Uma Chandradeva. Prashanthini has also completed her vocal and violin diploma under the tutelage of Shri Kutralam Nagarajan and Smt Thilagasakthi Aaramuthan respectively. Prashanthini is also an examiner for a number of examination bodies in the UK, including Academy of Fine Arts London (AOFA) and Oriental Fine Arts Academy London (OFAAL).

 

Dance

Aditi Sen, Kathak

ADITI2The beautiful dance form of Kathak is taught by Aditi Sen. She is a prominent dancer of the present generation in the realm of North Indian Classical Dance in India as well as abroad. She has received extensive training from some of the most talented and skillful teachers such as Srimati Maya Sinha (Mishra), Srimati Saswati Sengupta and Guru Susmita Mishra of the Jaipur Gharana (school or style). Most recently, she has been advancing her own skills and knowledge under the tutelage of renowned Kathak maestro Pandit Rajendra Gangani. She has also performed rigorous Riyaz (practice) under the able guidance of great tabla maestro Pandit Kumar Bose. Aditi always gave formal education a priority along with her dedication to this art form, and ultimately achieved a First Class Masters Degree in Indian Classical Dance (Kathak). Aditi is innovative both as a performer and a teacher, and she has inspired many audiences and students from a diverse range of backgrounds and cultures.

There are two levels of Kathak classes available.  Training focuses on theory, aspects of abhniaya (facial expression and emotion) and nritta (dance / movement technique).

Swati Raut, Bharatanatyam

Swati006Classes for ISTD level Bharatanatyam are taught by leading dance artist Swati Raut. Swati has trained in India under Guru Krishnan Kutty Nair and Smt Ammu Kutty Nair in the two distinctive Indian Classical dance styles Bharatanatyam and Mohiniattam. She is a part of the board for DIGM (Dance Initiative Greater Manchester) and is an ISTD faculty member, and head her own repertory company, Swati Dance Company.

The Imperial Society of Teachers of Dancing (ISTD) is one of the world’s leading dance examinations boards. The ISTD faculty examine Bharatanatyam and Kathak students each year according to a set syllabus.

Manisha Solanki, Bharatanatyam

IMG-20160817-WA0000Manisha is a successful dance artist whose passion and dedication lies within the performing arts. Trained in Bharatanatyam from a young age under the watchful eye of Dr Swati Raut, Manisha hopes to continue to progress as a teacher in this beautiful dance form.  She currently facilitates successful dance workshops in schools around the UK promoting Indian culture through the dance medium. The beginners’ class introduces the student to the basics of Bharatanatyam where they will learn the fundamentals and develop a sense of rhythm ready to move up to the pre-grade. Manisha’s unique way of teaching allows the student to develop their own style and flair with confidence while having fun throughout the process.

Santosh Nair, Bharatantyam

Santosh G. Nair is a young generation Bharatanatyam dancer, diciple of the eminent gurus, Guru Sri V.S.Ramamoorthy and Guru Smt.Manjula Ramaswamy. She is also fortunate enough to be trained under the guidance of Smt.Priyadarshini Govind and Bragha Bessel. She is now been guided by Smt.Rama Vaidyanathan whom she looks forward as her inspiration and uses her understanding to the form as a vision in her research. A young Management consultant and a scintillating Bharatanatyam dancer Santosh Nair who marks her origin from Kerala but was brought up in Hyderabad, India. She is currently pursuing her PhD in Bharatanatyam and spiritual studies of a performer from Liverpool Hope University UK.