Mission and Mandate:
Pratibha Arts serves to enhance and advance the cultural fabric of Ontario and Canada through the production, education and performance of arts, often featuring influences from South Asian cultures, which are reflective of this significant demographic in Canada. Under the Artistic leadership of Bageshree Vaze, the org
Mission and Mandate:
Pratibha Arts serves to enhance and advance the cultural fabric of Ontario and Canada through the production, education and performance of arts, often featuring influences from South Asian cultures, which are reflective of this significant demographic in Canada. Under the Artistic leadership of Bageshree Vaze, the organization’s vision is to promote artistic excellence as well as nurture future generations of artists in Ontario and reflect the current 'faces' of Toronto and Canada. ‘Pratibha’ means ‘creative intelligence’ in Sanskrit. Pratibha Arts’ activities enhance the collective artistic intelligence of Canadians, but also explore new avenues and models for intelligently supporting creativity.
According to its articles of incorporation, the organization promotes the Arts by achieving the following objectives:
1) to educate and increase the public’s understanding and appreciation of the Arts by providing performances of an artistic nature in public places by arranging and delivering educational seminars on topics relating to such artist performances.
2) to provide instructional seminars on topics relating to the performing and visual arts.
3) To produce performing arts festivals for the purposes of illustrating, educating and advancing the public’s understanding and appreciation of performing arts.
4) To ensure the continuation of the Arts by educating and developing artists through training and participation in performances, festivals, and related workshops.
Board of Directors:
Carolyn Poplak (President)
Meeta Bajaj (Treasurer)
Ritu Kumar (Secretary)
Bibhu Mohanty (Ex-Officio)
Bageshree Vaze is an Indo-Canadian dance artist, musician and writer -- for full bio please visit
Pratibha Arts was incorporated in the province of Ontario in 2011, and acquired federal charitable status in 2015. The organization was founded to create, produce and present multidisciplinary, high-quality works influenced by South Asian classical arts, but as a reflection of the Canadian cultural milieu. While many of its produc
Pratibha Arts was incorporated in the province of Ontario in 2011, and acquired federal charitable status in 2015. The organization was founded to create, produce and present multidisciplinary, high-quality works influenced by South Asian classical arts, but as a reflection of the Canadian cultural milieu. While many of its productions feature what are considered 'traditional' aesthetics, and are identified as 'culturally-diverse,' Pratibha Arts' impetus is to propagate these aesthetics as part of current, contemporary Canadian culture.
Under the artistic direction of Bageshree Vaze, Pratibha Arts is based in the downtown area of Toronto, but has partnered with many other organizations such as Harbourfront Centre (for its Spectrum series in 2012, 2013 and Sadhana series in 2016), and Sampradaya Dance Creations (2017). Its work has been presented by DanceWorks, the Oakville Centre for the Performing Arts, and the Canada Dance Festival. It has run a Dancer training initiative since 2013 and promotes the professional development of emerging dance and music artists through this program, as well as the 'Sadhana' professional development series for emerging South Asian artists.
In 2018, Pratibha Arts spearheaded the Dance Initiative, a shared platform for culturally-diverse dance companies to grow and develop audiences in downtown Toronto and Ontario.
Diversity Dance Initiative (DDI)
This innovative collaboration between culturally-diverse dance artists was created to address the structural challenges within the dance sector that prevent future growth and sustainability of their respective companies. Led by Pratibha Arts, under Bageshree Vaze's leadership, this project brings together small-scale culturally-diverse dance companies to make visible styles that reflect the diverse demographics of Canada and Canadian dance-making. DDI began outreach workshops in 2018, made possible by the Toronto Arts Council and Canada Council. Workshops have taken place at the Aga Khan Museum and the School of Toronto Dance Theatre. In 2021, Pratibha Arts is programming DDI workshops, lec-dems, school visits and performances as part of the Toronto Arts Council's Artists in the Library Residency program. It is also presenting DDI artists in a 'Presenter Education/Outreach project' in association with the CanDance Network and Made in BC Dance on Tour. DDI continues to advocate for greater visibility and presence of culturally-diverse dance and BIPOC artists in the Canadian arts ecology.
For more information or to book a workshop, please contact
Tarana, Ragas and Rhythms, Avatar (9) and Kalashree -- Music Albums for Dance: 2007's Tarana set the stage for disseminating music for Kathak dance performance, which artists around the world access for choreography and performance. The music tracks from these albums are available to download here:
A Canadian Dream -- A dance-theatre work exploring the unique story of Indo-Canadian participation in ice hockey. Told through personal stories by families of young hockey players such as Madeleine Rai, and through Indian classical dance language, this work is a story of what Canadian culture is all about.
Watch an excerpt here:
Paratopia -- commissioned by DanceWorks and premiered in 2015, this performance piece explores an alternate reality through dance and music, combining the languages of Kathak dance, Indian tabla rhythms, contemporary movement and beatboxing. Inspired by the Matrix movies, Paratopia connotes innovation and synthesis -- envisioning an alternate world and a future of dance and music that move beyond time and space.
Watch an excerpt here:
Bageshree Vaze’s Global India is an eclectic celebration of music and dance highlighting India’s film music history. Just as Hollywood evolved following World War II, the Hindi film industry flourished by adapting a musical format which featured songs and dances, giving rise to prolific music composers who defined and developed a unique Indian sound.
Choreographed, performed and directed by MTV India ‘ubbharta sitara’ (rising star) Bageshree Vaze, the show brings the musical influences of India to life through dance and visuals, highlighting the music of C. Ramachandran, Shankar Jaikishan, RD Burman, Bappi Lahiri, AR Rahman, and Shankar Ehsaan Loy, featuring a cast of Toronto musicians and dance artists
Satyam -- commissioned by Opera Nova Scotia in 2017, this production brings to life the classic tale of Savitri and Satyavan, a fable about true love, performed through the aesthetics of North Indian dance and rhythms, Western operatic singing, and contemporary dance.
A Hidden Princess -- this production exploring the inner life of 17th-century Jahanara Begum is a combination of Kathak dance, music, visuals and poetry choreographed and performed by Bageshree Vaze. The 2019 Toronto production was nominated for three Dora Mavor Moore awards in the Dance Division, including Outstanding performance, sound composition and production
Sadhana is a project initiated in 2016 that promotes the professional development of emerging artists who practice classical art forms such as Bharatha Natyam, Tabla and Mridangam drums, Kathak dance and Hindustani vocal music through assessment sessions with senior exponents in these forms. In 2016, assessors included Prof. Trichy Sankaran and in 2020 Pratibha Arts is proud to engage internationally-renowned artists Pt. Swapan Chaudhuri, Vidushi Saswati Sen and Dr. Vinay Bhide. 2020 has seen this project go virtual - please see details below in Events and watch the Artist Talks on the Sadhana Artists Talks page!
Pratibha Arts is generously supported by
As part of the Toronto Public Library's Artists in the Library Residency program, Pratibha Arts is presenting its DDI artists the summer of 2021! Details to come soon
Sign up to hear from us about upcoming shows and events.
We hope that everyone is staying safe and healthy during this global pandemic! While we await a time when we may all gather in theatres for live presentations, here are some online events that Pratibha Arts is presenting:
As part of its Sadhana professional development project for emerging South Asian artists, Pratibha Arts is hosting virtual assessment sessio...
We invite you to share in the intimate experience of North Indian classical Kathak and Tabla drumming in this time of social distancing!
We are proud to present an array of vibrant, talented dance and music artists who reflect the colours and diversity of Canada. In this virtu...
Your support and contributions will enable us to meet our goals and improve conditions especially in the time of COVID-19, supporting both artists and audiences and enhancing positivity in these challenging times. Your generous donation will help fund our mission and operations. Pratibha Arts is federally-registered charity (Charitable #814654406RC0001)