Vidya is a Birmingham based movement artist, choreographer, performer and collaborator. Training in Kathak from a young age, Vidya takes influences from various languages and experiences of working with a diverse range of artists within dance, music and visual arts. Her work focuses on autobiographical narratives drawing on themes of identity, belonging and empowerment.
Born, raised in a British Gujarati household in Handsworth- Vidya began training in Indian classical dance from a young age and continued her training with focus on Kathak, through the Centre of Advanced DanceXchange continued by guru Sujata Banerjee, research through Developing Your Creative Practise grant, and is currently part of the Pagrav Oxygen development programme. In 2015, Vidya represented the South Asian Category in the Grand Finals of the inaugural BBC Young Dancer 2015 at Sadler’s Wells, since, she has paved a career in the dance industry through performance, collaboration and her choreographic work, and is the one of four Sadler's Wells Young Associate artists 2020- 22.
In her early career she was invited as a guest artist to join the prestigious Richard Alston Dance Company for a new work in 2016, since she has performed in international touring works created by critically acclaimed artists Sir Richard Alston, Gary Clarke, Thick & Tight, Hetain Patel, Sujata Banerjee and Akademi, Sampad Arts, performed in the late Pandit Ravi Shankar’s “Sukanya” with the London Philharmonic Orchestra. Her performances have been recognised, leading to three nominations at the National Dance Critics Circle Awards amongst others. Most recently, she worked with artist Hetain Patel, featuring in his latest short film being her acting debut, “Trinity”, which was selected for BFI Flare Festival 2022 and live performance work “Baa’s Gold 10” at the National Gallery. Vidya has recently been selected amongst a few artists commissioned by Shado Magazine to create work exhibiting in November 2022.
Collaborating holding strong importance in Vidya’s processes, she first co collaborated with Connor Scott and composer Shammi Pithia creating full length work “About the Elephant” which premiered in India at the Serendipity Festival and then toured cities in the UK including Southbank’s Purcell Room for Alchemy Festival, most recently collaborating with writer/ poet Zia Ahmed and composer Sarathy Korwar for BBC Dance Passions 2021 at Sadler’s Wells.
Most recently, she was a Creative Collaborator with LYNNEBEC company for the Athlete Welcome Ceremonies for the Commonwealth Games 2022.
Vidya’s choreographic work for has been on the stages of Royal Opera House, Sadler’s Wells, Trinity Laban and across the UK, through commissions for the 3rd years Rambert School of Ballet and Contemporary Dance, Trinity Laban CAT Programme and for post graduate dance company Emergence led by Salford University and Joss Arnott Dance.
With interested in developing and contributing to the future of dance, Vidya continues to work with community groups and young people. She was a Creative Mentor for three young choreographer part of One Dance UK Young Creatives 2022 programme. She has been on the selection panel for U Dance Festival for three consecutive years, continues to teach workshops, intensives and has delivered talks for young people at various stages in their journey.
During the pandemic Vidya developed a community network, “South Asian Dance Artists UK”and further extends her advocacy work through facilitation, leadership and consultancy work. She serves on several boards and panels including Artcry- funding for political/ social art for the public. Whilst a Young Associated at Sadlers Wells, she has initiated the formation of Sadler’s Wells South Asian Taskforce during the pandemic.