“Shambhavi’s International School of Kathak” or SISK, is the brainchild of Shambhavi Dandekar. Shambhavi started running a branch of Maneesha Nrityalaya - her family organization when she was merely 18 years old to lighten her mother’s burden. She had the credentials and it was a golden opportunity for a budding performer, to grow as a teacher.
Shouldering all subsequent responsibilities came naturally to her and this offshoot of Maneesha Nrityalaya later evolved into Shambhavi's International School of Kathak, aka, SISK. It was inaugurated at the auspicious hands of Shambhavi’s Gurus - her mother Pandita Maneesha Sathe, Taalyogi Pandit Suresh Talwalkar, her high school teacher Mrs. Shubhada Dani and her father Mr. Rajas Sathe.
SISK is one of the leading Indian Classical Dance schools which specializes in imparting training in Kathak dance in the most authentic and traditional way. Over the past 20 years, SISK has multiplied in size. There are numerous branches with more than 400 students, a manager, an accountant and a dedicated teaching staff of more than 10 junior teachers, all of whom have been trained under Guru Maneesha Sathe or her lineage. SISK’s Kathak Repertory has performed at prestigious occasions in the presence of great personalities. Their performance has marked the inauguration of the International Film Festival at Pune, International Vedic Conference, Rotary International Convention, to name a few. They performed in the presence of former President of India Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam, Director General of Police Dr. Kiran Bedi, Spiritual Guru Sri Sri Ravi Shankar, Yoga Guru Ramdev Baba, Pt. Birju Maharaj, Pt. Jasraj, Pt. Hariprasad Chaurasia, Vidwan Adyar Laxman and many more..
Today, SISK has branches in India and USA and SISK-USA is headed by Shambhavi herself. She trains mostly adult students, thereby helping them fulfill their dreams and passion, provides them a creative source of exercise, while they pursue their careers. SISK-USA seeks blessings from everyone, as they embark upon a new journey through Darpan 2017, the second student showcase of SISK-USA.
Branches of SISK in India are led by Shambhavi’s sister-in-law and Guru Behen Tejaswini Sathe. SISK serves as an umbrella organization to a number of dance institutes founded and run by Shambhavi’s senior disciples in various parts of the world. It has produced some of the finest solo Kathak dancers of the present generation, who are making a mark in the Kathak dance scene of India. For the past 15 years, every single student of SISK-PUNE has been getting a chance to perform in the annual Kathakotsava, SISK’s student showcase.
SISK does not audition students while accepting them. They believe in their natural talent and desire to dance. The words of Shambhavi’s Guru Maneesha Sathe still ring true, “They come to you because they want to learn. If they could already dance, they wouldn't need you!”
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