Upasana Performing Arts Center

Sonia Chaudhuri

Sonia has trained in the United States and India in the highly stylized  classical Indian dance form of Kathak. Sonia has been professionally trained in Kathak, Bharata Natyam, Ballet and Modern dance.  Sonia is committed to the promoting the awareness and appreciation of India's performing arts to today's youth and audience. 

She began her initial training in Kathak under Smt. Meena Deshpande (Louisville, KY) at the age of 4.  She continued her training in the Jaipur Gharana of Kathak under Smt. Prachi Dixit (Los Angeles, California) from the age of 9.  After completing her arangetram in Bharata Natyam under the guidance of Monica Cooley (Nashville, TN) she  moved to Kolkata, India where she spent over a year of rigorous professional training in the Lucknow Gharana of Kathak under Pandit Sontosh Maharaj.   Sonia has a Bachelor of Science in Dance & Education from Stephens College (Columbia, MO) and a Master of Arts in Teaching with a Montessori Certification from Belmont University (Nashville, TN).

Throughout her years of Kathak training, Sonia has had the honor of participating in Master workshops and expanding her knowledge with renowned Gurus of Kathak - Pandit Birju Maharaj (Delhi, India), Guru Urmila Nagar (Delhi, India) and Guru Amita Dutta (Kolkata, India).

Sonia has extensive experience performing in reputable events in the United States, such as Mid America Bengali Conference in St Louis, Chicago and Nashville as well as Kansas City’s annual Bengali Conference.  She has also had the honor of performing in prestigious venues in Kolkata, India's Arabindo Ashram and Children's Little Theatre.

  • In 2001, Sonia toured extensively throughout the United States with her Guruji Pandit Sontosh Maharaj in cities such as Nashville, Memphis, Louisville, and Indianapolis. 
  • In 2003, Sonia created Upasana Peforming Arts Center in Nashville, TN. 
  • In 2011, Sonia initiated establishing a Diploma Program in Kathak and Hindustani Vocal through an affiliation with Pracheen Kala Kendra University of Chandigarh, India.
  • In 2012, Sonia established the Upasana Dance Company.  The professional dance company participates in numerous prestigious events and has achieved national recognition for innovative choreography, gorgeous costumes and excellence in dance. 
  • In the summer of 2013, Sonia was invited to be a regular Guest Teacher at Nashville Ballet.
  • Since 2014,  Sonia has been collaborating  with  Louisville School of Kathak.

Under the leadership of Sonia,  Upasana Performing Arts Center is the only school in Tennessee to  offer classes in Kathak, Hindustani Vocal and Bollywood.  Sonia's vision is for Upasana to become an internationally recognized institute of fine arts known for authenticity, excellent training and creative innovation.