Prakriti Excellence in Contemporary Dance Awards (2018)


India is a country of tremendous artistic heritage, but there are very few Indian practitioners today with significant international exposure in the field of performing arts. This is certainly not for want of talented artists in the country, but is a direct result of there not being enough platforms for Indian artists to explore and hone their talents. Since our inception, we at the Prakriti Foundation have aspired to play a catalytic role in providing such a nurturing platform to artists in India.

We believe that contemporary dance is the new emerging form of expression, that weaves its own language and grammar in India. This needs to be recognized and mentored, thus enabling artists to achieve high levels of excellence. Hence, we have instituted the Prakriti Excellence in Contemporary Dance Awards (PECDA), a biennial event, which will be a platform for emerging contemporary dance forms, where-by exposing artists to a wider audience. That said, PECDA, for artists, is not merely a means of showcasing their work, but is also a launchpad for their future development; ultimately leading to the development of contemporary dance in the country.

PECDA is open-entry competition, where judges look at works in progress of all entrants, over a span of two days and vet down the performances to the best. The winning performance is awarded two key things – a funding of INR 5 lakhs and an annual mentorship by an internationally-renowned dance company. While the funding is meant to serve as a means for artists to develop their work-in-progress performance into a full-fledged one, the mentorship provides them exposure and nurturing at the International Level – an element that was so far missing in the Indian contemporary dance scene.

After developing their performance over the period of a year, under the mentorship of the internationally-renowned company which helps the artists refine their production and presentation, the winning team subsequently showcases their choreographic piece at The Park’s New Festival, on a 6-city tour.

Karthika NairKarthika Nair, noted author, dance producer and curator is the Festival Director of PECDA. Karthika Nair was born in India, lives in Paris, and works as a dance producer and curator. She is the author of Bearings, a poetry collection; DESH: Memories, inherited, borrowed, invented, a dance diary; and The Honey Hunter/ Le Tigre de Miel, a children’s book illustrated by Joelle Jolivet. Nair was the principal storywriter and scriptwriter of DESH, choreographer Akram Khan’s award-winning production. As a dance producer, Nair has worked in several Parisian cultural centers and with choreographers Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui, Damien Jalet and Mourad Merzouki.

PECDA 2018 - JuryThe jury members for this edition were:

  • Eddie Nixon (Director, Theatre and Artist Development, The Place UK)
  • Frederic Mazelly (Program Director, La Villette, Paris)
  • Elena Carmona (Director, Residency Space, Mercat de les Flors)
  • Chandrika Grover (Arts Consultant, New Delhi)
  • Renuka Narayanan (Author, Poet & Journalist)



Prakriti Foundation presents the 2018 edition of the Prakriti Excellence in Contemporary Dance Awards (PECDA) from 28th – 31st August in Chennai.

We are now announcing the fourth edition of PECDA for the year 2018, and are inviting applications for the same. The last date for submission of the entries is 30th April 2018. The rules and regulations can be downloaded here and the PECDA application form can downloaded here. The completed applications can be sent via email to or by post.

For any further details please contact (0) 8754415362.


The PECDA performances was held over three days - 28th and 29th August, the Semi Finals and 30th August, the Finals.The announcement of the award will be done on 31st August. For further details regarding the venue and time, kindly select the date from the drop-down menu.


Semi Finals - DAY 1
Time: 07:00 PM Venue: To be named, Chennai

Shortlisted entries will present their work.


Semi Finals - DAY 2
Time: 07:00 PM Venue: To be named, Chennai

Shortlisted entries will present their work.


Finals - DAY 3
Time: 07:00 PM Venue: To be named, Chennai

Selected finalists from the semi-finals will present their work.


Announcement of Award - DAY 4
Time: 07:00 PM Venue: To be named, Chennai

The winner of PECDA 2018 will be announced.

Past events

To know more about our past editions of this festival, kindly select a Year from the drop-down menu below.

Click below to download details about this edition of the festival.






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