She was born on 11th March at Hamilton, Ontario, Canada. In the academic field she obtained B.Math in Computer Science and Mathematics from University of Waterloo in the year 1991, BEd from University of Ottawa in the year 1992. Niharika came back to her studies after two years of teaching in secondary schools. This time she pursued a Master's Degree in Fine Arts at the York University in the year 1997. Odissi dance form and its history have been studied by Niharika in depth. She, through her studies, has explored the 'remarkable re-emergence of the Indian classical dance styles, and its emergence in the West'. Niharika Mohanty tries to focus her research interest mostly in the field of dance and technology, in particular concerning to Odissi dance. Furthermore, she aims to create a multimedia Odissi documentation system in a PhD program. Another aim of her is to teach in a Department of Dance in an academic institution. More in recent times, she has received a certificate in Internet Design & Technology from San Francisco State University. Niharika Mohanty is also a web and graphic designer-cum- programmer, organizer.
The arising desire of Niharika Mohanty, to be trained further in Odissi eventually resulted in the actualization of a dream of becoming the disciple of Padma Vibhushan late Guru Kelucharan Mohapatra in the year 1989. Guru Kelucharan Mohapatra was esteemed as the internationally illustrious rejuvenator of Odissi dance. At a stretch for months, Niharika Mohanty was conditioning on a regular basis from Guru Mohapatra. As the time passes, she started realizing her passion for Odissi dance because of her Guru's love, guidance, and faith. This after an unspecified period of time made her to live out that passion. As she recalls, "Learning from late Guru Kelucharan Mohapatra had been a life changing experience for me." Today, she is reckoned as a prominent disciple of late Kelucharan Mohapatra.
Niharika Mohanty goes forward her training under Sujata Mohapatra, who is Guru Mohapatra's gifted daughter-in-law and is one of the leading Odissi dancers. Nationally and internationally, Niharika Mohanty has performed in many presentations and festivals. To name a few , the San Francisco Ethnic Dance Festival in 2006, Odissi Dance Festival in 2003, the 1998 Konark Dance & Music Festival in India, the Canada Dance Festival in 1996, the Fourth Conference of Dance Research in 1995 in Mexico City, the Navodaya Festival in 1994 and 1997, the Festival of New Choreography in 1996 in Toronto. In the year 1996, she also bagged the fortune of ensuing Guru Kelucharan Mohapatra on a North American and European tour. This tour was conducted mainly as a celebration of Guru Kelucharan Mohapatra's 70th birth anniversary.
Niharika Mohanty has also pocketed the treasure to be performed with various noted dancers like, Sujata Mohapatra (Odissi), Sukalyan Bhattacharya (Manipuri), Ravi Mony (Kuchipudi), Late Jahanara Akhlaq (Kathak), Kamala Reddy (Kuchipudi), Sujatha Srinivasan (Bharatanatyam), Radha Dutta (Mohiniattam), Anjali Patil (Kathak). In Sukalyan Bhattacharya's dance drama, 'Chitrangada' she has starred as "Surupa".
Niharika Mohanty has ventured a career as a choreographer in the year 1996. She has produced joint choreographic pieces with respective qualified artists of different dance forms. "In Unison" was a joint cooperative piece between Niharika in the Odissi style and Hari Krishnan in the Bharatanatyam style. She has also produced "Mixed Reactions" for York University's Festival of New Choreography with a collaboration of four graduate dance students, alumni and three graduate music students. She has also choreographed "Masala"; Mata Metrova"; a mini dance drama "Radha Govinda", with Odissi dancer, Ipsita Satpathy; "Nava Sattvam". Acknowledging her talent, the Canada Council conferred her grants to peruse further productions. Niharika has also been the recipient of the Chalmers Award and for her research, training, choreography, and performance
Niharika Mohanty's teaching career in Nrtyakala began in Odissi. It was an Indian dance institution in Toronto, directed by Niharika's former teacher, Dr. Menaka Thakkar. She taught in the institution for four years. Simultaneously she was also learning from her teacher the process of effective teaching ways of Indian dance in North America. She has continued to teach her own classes afterwards.
Niharika Mohanty in North America actively initiating and carrying out novel ideas. All these initiatives are considering the collective promotion and apprehension of Odissi, Indian dance, and other dance forms. She had organized a successful Indian dance camp for three years, in her native Hamilton, Canada. To bring an awareness of Orissa's culture to the younger generation, she has reinitiated 'Kumar Utsav' in the Toronto vicinity. The 20th Anniversary Celebration for India Canada Society of Hamilton & Region has been initiated by Niharika Mohanty. A dance group called "Jukta" is an instauration of Niharika. It is a corporate of eight dancers who represents six Indian classical dance styles. Now, Niharika Mohanty in the Bay Area has initiated a group of the Odissi professional dancers of that area, called Kalashri Sangha .
(Last Updated on : 26-07-2014)
|More Articles in Indian Odissi dancers (46)|