Ananya Dance Theatre Ongoing Classes

Find rhythm, groundedness, and flow with dance classes at Ananya Dance Theatre’s Shawngrām Institute for Performance and Social Justice.

Pop Up Class: Body Watani, July 5–August 30
Tuesdays 10-11:30am CT with Noelle Awadallah
Body Watani (watani means homeland in Arabic) is both an improvisational movement practice and an emerging contemporary dance form developed by Leila and Noelle Awadallah, two Palestinian American dancers. The practice is a container with soft edges where improvisational research guides practitioners into their personal ‘body watani’ through spending time with ancestries, contemplating our complex relations to land/water/home, and activating embodied memories into one’s own dancing. Body Watani also manifests as a contemporary form with roots in dances of Arabic / *SWANA / Mediterranean lands through specific movement techniques, music of the region, and cultural/political content to engage with that deepens our relation to Body Watani’s context.
*SWANA: South West Asia North Africa

Intro to Yorchhā**
Saturdays, 9:00-10:00am CT with Parisha Rajbhandari
Envision justice through rhythmic footwork, flowing torso, and sustained breath in Intro to Yorchhā. Each class begins with a warm-up followed by foundational Yorchhā exercises and a fun choreographed phrase.

**Yorchhā is Ananya Dance Theatre’s trade-marked contemporary technique that intersects principles of vinyasa yoga, classical Indian dance form Odishi (from the eastern Indian state of Odisha), and martial art form Chhau (also from Odisha).

Wednesday Water Dances
Wednesday, 9:30-11:00am CT with Kealoha Ferreira
A weekly dedication to the vitality and life force of Water. We will offer breath, dance, meditation, story, song, and reflection in class. Each class will take shape a little differently, staying responsive to the ongoing movements protecting the value and longevity of water worldwide. Facilitated by Kealoha Ferreira, an Ananya Dance Theatre Artist, Wednesday Water Dances will begin with grounding movement, flow into dedicated time for personal practice/research/reflection, and close with collective sharing. All committed to deepening their relationship with water are welcome to participate.

Advanced Yorchhā
Friday, 6:00-7:00pm CT with Kealoha Ferreira
Dive into the nuance and complexity of Yorchhā. Advanced Yorchhā is designed to challenge and hone experienced movers through strength training, technique refinement, and intricate choreography. Previous Yorchhā experience is encouraged.

Yoga: Aligning With Land
Sundays 3:00-4:00pm CT with Kealoha Ferreira
From Tadasana (mountain pose), the first asana in Surya Namaskar (sun salutation) A, we connect our feet to the ground and shift our internal landscape to find equity with the land that sustains us. Our practices of relationality and reciprocity are also building blocks for sustainable and regenerative body practices. This Vinyasa class introduces and deepens the fundamentals of structural and energetic alignment in Yoga while moving towards right-relationship between place and community. All are welcome to participate. Variations and modifications will be provided for multiple access points in each class. Mats and blocks are encouraged with limited supplies available at the Institute.

Location Info

Shawngram Institute
1197 University Avenue West
Saint Paul, MN 55104


Contact Info

Kealoha Ferreira