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founder of bharathanjali

(INDIAN CLASSICAL DANCER Smt.Priya Manoj, is an established Indian classical dancer and a dance teacher of repute in Abu Dhabi, UAE.)

Early life & education

Priya was born in to Sri.K.U.Gangadharan and Smt. K.Premalatha, in Malapuram, Kerala. She was initiated into dance right from the early age of six and grew up learning the Bharatanatyam style of dance initially under Guru Surendran Padavur and Kalamandalam Sridevi Gopinath, respectively. After completion of the formal training, she gave her ‘Arangetram’ in 1989, while in her eighth grade.

She foraged into the Mohiniyattam style under Kalamandalam Sujatha as well. Over the years she gave many recitals and took part in various dance competitions She was honoured with ‘Kalathilakam Pattom’ at District & Sub—district levels and in Inter-zone competitions and received many prestigious rewards as well.

Dance had always been an ardent emotion from childhood for Priya. Seeing her dedication and commitment her parents gave their fullDance had always been an ardent emotion from childhood for Priya. Seeing her dedication and commitment her parents gave their full support wholeheartedly. Though in class 10 th and 12th she had to concentrate more on her studies, Priya never gave up on her pursuits. While doing her MA and B.Ed. she continued her training under many Gurus and worked on her versatility.

Personal life

Priya got married to Sri. Manoj in the year 2001 and joined her husband in Abu Dhabi. She began to work as a Literature Teacher at the Model School and was eventually blessed with a son. However, dance being her primary passion, she was eager to bring it back into her life. With the full support and encouragement of her husband Priya began dancing again. Priya Manoj’s first performance in Abu Dhabi was at the Malayalee Samajam. This was the turning point in her life in Abu Dhabi, as after seeing her exquisite performance she was requested to take dance classes in school. She started teaching Bharatanatyam, Mohiniyattam and other forms of dance. However, she yearned to rejoin her dance lessons for personal gratification and wanted to equip herself to teach dance in the proper way also. For this purpose, she utilised her vacation period or took extended breaks to go to India and continued her learning in the different nuances of classical dancing.


From 2003, under the tutelage of renowned Padmashri Kalamandalam Kshemavathy, Priya reworked on her Mohiniyattam style and still continues her learning under the guidance of Suganthi Teacher and polished her Bharatanatyam skills also under Kalakshetra Haripadman in Chennai. Simultaneously over the years, she undertook specialised lessons for Nattuvangam under Nattuvanar K.S.Balakrishnan and Abhinaya under Guru Bragha Besel. These high- end holistic trainings gave her immense confidence to stucturize and choreograph on her own.

In 2006, in accordance with her vision of sharing knowledge to the coming generation, Priya established ‘Bharathanjali’ classical dance training centre

that promotes Indian classical dance forms. She teaches Bharatanatyam for young students and regularly conducts Arangetrams after an intense training for at least 5 years. For interested older children above 13 years she teaches Mohiniyattam and Kuchipudi. Specialised workshops in music, taal and abhinaya are also conducted with the help of artists from Kerala.

Priya and her disciples have been performing across various stages in UAE and India [Kerala, Tamil Nadu & Andra Padesh]. She has choreographed varied dance styles for programs in Indian embassy ,Abudhabi, Indian Social Centre, Kerala Social Centre, Malayalee Samajam, Kerala Arts Loving Association, , , Shakthi Association, etc. at Abu Dhabi. Her excellent calibre and choreographic skills have granted her disciples many awards. Now Bharathanjali is giving training at its two centres - Mussafah and Kerala Social Centre, AbuDhabi, respectively.


Shanmughodayam [2019]


Navarasamayan [2017]


Mohiniyattam Production

Navarasamayan promo