The idea of chitra.MOVES emerged when Chitra and her family moved briefly to Cleveland from 2015–2018. Here, she found an incredible community of dancers, most of whom grew up in Cleveland’s east side. They became friends, collaborators and mentors. Nearly all of the street dance in Cleveland exists outside of any formal studio or organization — it takes place in parks, garages, basements, living rooms, and nightclubs. This period of time was one of the most meaningful in Chitra’s life.
Some dancers she was spending a lot of time with wanted to learn more about her classical movement background, so Chitra began sharing her style with them. They soon began informally experimenting with movement and choreography, blending styles together and exploring new concepts. It started simple — gathering at the park near Chitra’s house, sharing quick choreography, filming, laughing, and having fun. These spaces were ideal to throw out unusual ideas, receive feedback, and just exchange together. The rawness, self-awareness, and passion of the dancers inspired her to take a more organized approach to performance.
Leaders in the street dance community, including Donald Isom, Paul Carpenter, and Samuel McIntosh encouraged her to share and create more. Drawing from this talent and passion from Cleveland and from her hometown of Pittsburgh, Chitra planted the seeds for what is now called chitra.MOVES — a diverse group of artists from different cities, coming together to create, innovate, exchange energy, and build life-long relationships.
The formal launch of this effort took place when chitra.MOVES competed in a global Bollywood platform, DanceUSADance, performing with dancers from Cleveland and Pittsburgh, and making it to the finals in New York City. The collective has expanded more since Chitra’s return to DC, engaging a range of DMV-based dancers. Utilizing Chitra’s unique movement vocabulary, chitra.MOVES has since inspired audiences in DC, Maryland, Cleveland, Pittsburgh, New York City, and New Jersey.
To explore bookings for workshops, classes, performances, intensives, and other opportunities or collaborations, please send a message here or email email@example.com.
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