Rema Shrikant's Dance Academy

Rema Shrikant


Rema Shrikant is a gifted dancer, an established teacher and a evolved choreographer. During the span of four decades of her dancing career,  she has had many performances, trained a large number of students and choreographed some dance dramas. Her hard work and dedication to classical dance have been highly appreciated and as a mark of recognition, she has been honored and the prominent being the "Gaurav Puraskar"award in 2000  by the Gujarat State Sangeet Natak Academy and "Kala Shri" Award in 2012, by the Kerala Sangeet Natak Akademies.

Heritage and Training
Rema started learning dance from the age of four under her parents, Guru Krishna Panicker and Smt. Gauri Panicker at their Nritya Prabha institute in Mumbai. Being passionate with dance, she continued further training under veteran masters including Padmabhushan Awardee Prof. C.V. Chandrasekhar of Kalakshetra fame during her graduation and post-graduation courses in Bharatanatyam at the Faculty of Performing Arts, Maharaja Sayajirao 
University in Vadodara. It is matter of great pride that Rema excelled in her studies securing distinction and first rank with the University Gold Medal. What is more, Rema has learnt other south Indian dance styles such as Mohiniyattam, Kuchipudi and Kathakali.

Rema had the opportunity to train students from a very early age at her parents' institute and it made her bold and confident. Having trained under the great master, Prof. Chandrasekhar for more than 17 years, she learnt and evolved the technique of choreography. 


Rema has extensively performed in India and abroad including countries, USA, UK, Russia, Japan and other Far East. Being an impaneled member in the Indian Council for Cultural Relations, Government of India, she has been given opportunities to perform in cultural exchange programs sponsored by the ICCR. She with her group  recently performed Bharatanatyam in the Year of India festival 2009 in Russia at Moscow and St. Peter's Berg.

Training of Students

Rema with her daughter Nitya Gopikrishnan has established "Ellora Center for Performing Arts",  a dance academy at Vadodara area in Gujarat, India for providing training.  She has been training students for the past 37 years.  Says, one of her teachers, who taught Bharatanatyam at the Faculty of Performing Arts, Baroda, till her retirement, “Rema is someone who is genuinely interested in dance and in doing something for dance”. Rema believes in the total development of her students.  One of her ex-student Bina, says, “Rema Shrikant is a great teacher and her greatness lies in her dreams for others, her students.  She can inspire the most ordinary learners.  Her mentor and guru, Prof. C.V. Chandrasekhar, has high praise for her: “Apart from being a beautiful dancer, Rema has proved to be wonderful teacher.” 


Choreography gives Rema the freedom to explore, experiment and create though always within the parameters of the classical form in question. She came out first with a dance-drama in 1975 for the annual function of her students at the Gujarat Refinery Township. She has thereafter choreographed many dance dramas which were well received both by the audience and the media.

"Andaal” was an attempt to portray the life of the Vaishnavite poetess of South India who is compared to Meerabai of North India".  Another subject she picked up for choreography was the contrast in dance during Devadasi period and the contemporary period.  This was called "Nritya Nivedanam".  Her work "Maya" is about illusion, unattainable reality and unseen attachment. Her other choreographic works include Rasa Ranjini based on the Navarasas, Jayadeva’s Geeta Govindam or Ashtapadis, Krishna Leela based on the life of Lord Krishna, Sree Ganesha – which explored Lord Ganesha as the being in the totality of the facts, myths and beliefs based on him and Skanda dedicated to Lord Karthikeya. Her latest production, “Keraleeyam” showcasing God’s own country, has received amazing response and reviews. She has choreographed “Jai  Jai Garvi Gujarat”,  “Kutch Symphony” for Sharadostav and “Sada Kal Gujarat” for International Kite Festival at the invitation of the Government of Gujarat.

Awards & Honours

Rema has been bestowed with the "Gaurav Puraskar" award by the Gujrat State Sangeet Akademi Award for Bharatanatyam in the year 1999-2000. Recently she was honored by the Kerala State Sangeetha Nataka Akademi with thier award, "Kala Sree"  for her contributions in classcical dance. 

Rema is a Gold Medalist from Maharaja Sayajirao University, Baroda for Bharatanatyam. She is also impaneled with ICCR, Government of India.

Nitya Gopikrishnan 

Nitya an accomplished Bharatanatyam dancer got her training under Rema Shrikant, her 
mother, for more than 8 years and after that she took advance training under Padma Bhushan C.V. Chandrasekhar and performed Arangetram under his guidance. She pursued her academics and took masters in Business Management.  She is a proficient teacher in imparting Bharatanatyam to young aspirants of this classical dance.

Rema Shrikant - an interview by Vadodara News Magazine (VNM)
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