Rekha received 17 years of traditional odissi training in the guru-shishya parampara in New Delhi and Odisha, after which she went to Laban, London, for a PhD in Dance Studies. Her work ever since has explored the common ground between classical and contemporary values in dance practice, encompassing embodiment, performance, choreography, and teaching. Her solo performances have been presented at many festivals in different parts of the world since 1985.

In 1997 she co-founded Dance Routes with Michael Weston, who has been a constant collaborator with her on the company’s projects thereafter. Her MA thesis in History of Art, exploring odissi’s usage of temple sculpture as a resource for choreography, was jointly published as a book entitled ‘Odissi-A Dance Of Sculpture’ in 2005. As the company’s Artistic Director, she choreographed and directed several productions with dancers from the gotipua tradition around Puri between 2005-2013. Rekha’s studio work since 2001 on the practical applications of the tantric body map in Indian dance, were first published in 2008 by the Indira Gandhi National Centre for the Arts, Narivada Series. Her book, Dance as Yoga – The Spirit and Technique of Odissi, takes this discussion forward, as does her present practice of odissi.

Publications

Books
Rekha Tandon:  Dance as Yoga – The Spirit and Technique of Odissi, Niyogi Publications, New Delhi, 2017
Michael Weston & Rekha Tandon:  Odissi – A Dance of Sculpture, KAI Trust Publications, New Delhi, 2012

Video Documentary
Odissi – A Dance of Sculpture  2009
https://www.routledgeperformancearchive.com/multimedia/video/odissi-a-dance-of-sculpture-i

Articles
The Symbiotic Relationship between Indian Dance and the Yogic Chakras, Narivada series (Gender and Representation), IGNCA, February 2008
Dhara – the Flow of a Dance Tradition Indian Horizons, Volume 54, July – September 2007
Classical Odissi Dance: Negotiating a New Path INTACH Virasat Commemorative Issue-Vision 2020, New Delhi, November 2004
Rethinking the Gurukul, Rasmanjari, New Delhi, August 2002
Perspectives on Odissi Kala Vikash Kendra, Cuttack Commemorative Volume, Cuttack Odisha 1999.
The Spontaneity of Movement The India Magazine, Volume 14, New Delhi, September 1994

Bio Data

Formal Education
PhD Dance Studies, Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance, London 2005
MA History of Art, National Museum Institute of History of Art, Conservation and Museology, National Museum, New Delhi, 1995
BA Architecture, School of Planning and Architecture, New Delhi 1985

Odissi
Guru Trinath Maharana (1993-1997)
Padma Vibhushan Guru Kelucharan Mohapatra (intermittently 1985-2002)
Padmashree  Madhavi Mudgal (1982-1990)
(PCJ) SN Jena (1975-1981)

Yoga
Informal, continuous self-study with different teachers and systems from 1978 till present time. Also trained in Reiki, Qi Gong and Hypnotherapy through workshops. Certified as yoga teacher from the Bihar School of Yoga (2002). Also trained in Kriya Yoga as taught by the Bihar School of Yoga (2003). Regularly practicing Self-enquiry and Vipassana since 2005.

Conferences
Matter Precipitates, Bharat Nivas, Auroville 2011
Dance Platform (a collaboration), Max Mueller Bhavan and Prohelvetia, New Delhi 2010
New-Orientations, University of Halle, Germany 2009
On the Silk Route of Gestures, University School of Pedagogy and Philosophy, Krakow, Poland 2008
“Postcolonial Identity Construction in South Asian Music and Dance”, The School of Oriental & African Studies (SOAS), Arts & Humanities Research Board (AHRB), London, UK 2005

Grants Received
Ministry of Culture Govt. of India, Cultural Functions Grant Scheme, 2010
Sangeet Natak Akademi, New Delhi 2007
Eastern Zonal Cultural Centre, Kolkota 2006
Ford Foundation 2005
INTACH Intangible Heritage 2005-2007
UNESCO Artist’s Bursary Award 1996
Charles Wallace Arts Fellowship UK 1995.

Performance History (till 2015)

Odissi (Group Presentations):

2015
Bharat Nivas, Auroville
India International Centre, New Delhi

2013
Kirloskar Wedding, Pune (Private Commission)
Bharat Nivas, Auroville

2011
Bharat Nivas, Auroville
TVS Wedding, Chennai (Private Commission)
Ashram Theatre, Pondicherry

2010
CSMVS Museum, Mumbai
Mittal Wedding, Grand Hyatt, Mumbai (Private Commission)

2009
Kirloskar Wedding, Pune (Private Commission)
HCL Concerts, Stein Auditorium, Habitat Centre, New Delhi

2008
Virasat Festival, Dehra Dun, Uttarakhand

2007
The Park’s New Festival, Chennai
Federalism Event, Rajpath, New Delhi
Dance City, Newcastle, UK
Quay Theatre, The Lowry, Manchester, UK
Nehru Centre, London, UK
House of World Cultures, Berlin, Germany

2006
Anandagram, New Delhi
Eastern Zonal Cultural Centre, Kolkata
Alliance Francaise, New Delhi

2005
Basant Utsav, Raghurajpur

2003
Utkal University, Bhubaneswar, Orissa, India

Odissi (Solo):

2014
Krishna Gana Sabha, Chennai

2012
The National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne, Australia
The National Gallery of Australia, Canberra, Australia

2011
Sri Aurobindo Auditorium, Bharat Nivas, Auroville

2009
Neu-Orientations-Ieurungen, Halle, Germany

2008
Delhi International Arts Festival
Tanz Ortam Gleis, Winterthur, Switzerland
Anthropology of Dance Festival, Krakow, Poland

2007
National Festival of Odissi Dance & Music, Bhubaneswar
The Lowry, Manchester, UK

2006
Arts & Music Festival, Milford on Sea, UK
Muruga Temple, Skanda Vale, Wales, UK
Centre for Performance Research, Wales, UK
Conference on Hypnotherapy, Tivoli Gardens, New Delhi

2005
Mandapa Centre, Paris, France
India Habitat Centre, New Delhi

2004
Sanskriti Kendra, Anandgram, New Delhi
Centre for Performance Research, Aberystwyth, Wales

1999
British Council, New Delhi
Raghurajpur Basant Utsav, Orissa

1998
Sangeet Natak Nrutyaparva, Bhubaneswar, Orissa

1997
Johannesburg, Durban and Blomfontein, South Africa

1995
Royal Festival Hall, London (accompanied Madhavi Mudgal and Guru Kelucharan Mohapatra)

1994
Guwahati, Assam

1993
Hennbont, Lorient and Vannes, France

1992
Yuva Mahotsava, New Delhi.
Sao Paolo, Brazil.

1989
Tokyo and Yokohama, Japan

1988
Oslo, Bergen and Tromso, Norway

1987
Ashoka Convention Hall, New Delhi

1985
Baltimore, Pittsburgh and Princeton, USA