Usha Dance Entourage
The Usha Dance Entourage will be performing DARBARI KATHAK.
Usha Gupta has reached considerable success as the Artistic Director of Usha Dance Entourage in Edmonton, Alberta. She has built a substantial career in Canada as the creator of high-quality dance works based on the classical Indian dance form Kathak Dance which is a North Indian form. Her dances have all premiered in Edmonton presented by the Brian Webb Dance Company. Her most recent dances have toured across Canada in cities such as Calgary, Vancouver, Toronto, Montreal, and Ottawa. They have also toured in India in cities such as Delhi, Mumbai, Calcutta, and Bangalore.
Gupta has contributed choreography to operas here and in Vancouver and fostered the careers of numerous dancers and musicians, playing a key role in building Indian culture to Edmonton through teaching, festival presentations, and fundraising. Inducted into Edmonton’s Arts & Culture Hall of Fame in 2016, she has brought her expertise to organizations like the Alberta Dance Alliance, the Edmonton Arts Council and more. Indian music fans have witnessed her play accompanist on the tanpura drone for visiting greats in Raga Mala Society concerts.
Her latest dance KHOJ, premiered in Edmonton in 2018, toured to India in 11 cities in 2019 and is now scheduled to tour in Canada to 7 cities in the summer of 2022. The show draws from the ancient classical tradition of kathak dance and the Lucknow gharana (or school) of Northern India where Gupta was born 81 years ago, in the province of Punjab. For the performances of KOHJ, live music was central to their success, and in all of them Usha sang. The reviews from India of KHOJ consistently praised her work for its “freshness.” This is because she very successfully animates her creative work based on classical structures with contemporary influences.