With precision and sparkling grace, Ananda Shankar Jayant performs and teaches the classical dance styles of Bharatanatyam and Kuchipudi.

Why you should listen

Ananda Shankar Jayant is trained in two traditional forms of classical Indian dance, Bharatanatyam and Kuchipudi. Both forms require long training and precise timing to express their essence -- and both forms, in Shankar Jayant's hands, are capable of exploring deep truths.

As a choreographer and performer, she uses dance to talk about gender issues (as in 1999's What About Me?), mythology and philosophy, setting these carefully handed-down forms of dance onto a modern stage. She leads the Shankarananda Kalakshetra school in Hyderabad and Secunderabad, and is a scholar of dance and art, lecturing frequently on both throughout India.

What others say

“My language called dance paints before you a canvas of life and beyond -- of our fallible self groping in the darkness for that light of eternity.” — Ananda Shankar Jayant

Ananda Shankar Jayant’s TED talk

Ananda Shankar Jayant on the TED Blog

Q&A

Q&A with Ananda Shankar Jayant: The power of myth and metaphor

June 18, 2010

Before her TEDTalk posted today, the TED Blog caught up with classical Indian dancer Ananda Shankar Jayant. After being diagnosed with breast cancer in 2008, she continued dancing and gave an amazing performance at the TEDIndia conference in November 2009. Now in remission and still enjoying life to its fullest, she gives an update on […]

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TEDIndia

Fighting cancer with a dance: Ananda Shankar Jayant on TED.com

June 18, 2010

Renowned classical Indian dancer Ananda Shankar Jayant was diagnosed with cancer in 2009. She tells her personal story of not only facing the disease but dancing through it, and gives a performance revealing the metaphor of strength that helped her do it. (Recorded at TEDIndia, November 2009 in Mysore, India. Duration: 16:07) Watch Ananda Shankar […]

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TEDIndia

The Buzz: "Hats off" to Ananda Shankar Jayant, cancer conqueror

November 6, 2009

Photo: Ananda Shankar at TEDIndia, Session 7, “Power of Stories,” November 6, 2009, in Mysore, India. Credit: TED / James Duncan Davidson Dancer and choreographer Ananda Shankar Jayant brought the audience to its feet at the conclusion of Session 7 with a moving story of her battle against cancer — and the way she reclaimed […]

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Quotes from Ananda Shankar Jayant

Cancer’s only one page in my life, and I will not allow this page to impact the rest of my life.
Ananda Shankar Jayant
TEDIndia 2009 • 460K views Jun 2010
Inspiring, Courageous
How do you keep cheer when you go from beautiful to bald in three days?
Ananda Shankar Jayant
TEDIndia 2009 • 460K views Jun 2010
Inspiring, Courageous