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Minor in Performing Arts

The performing arts are an integral part of education at Ashoka and often act as a prism through which other subjects can be viewed. The courses being offered are designed to engage with ‘performance’ as an academic as well as a practical subject. The interrelated nature of music, dance and theatre is emphasized throughout the performing arts programme. Each of these courses is worth 4 credits. Undergraduates at Ashoka may opt for a minor in performing arts.


Apart from the performing arts minor courses, a whole array of 2-credit co-curricular courses in performing and visual arts is offered every semester. Students are eligible for and encouraged to take co-curricular courses from the first semester of their first year.


The Performing Body

Faculty: Navtej Johar

Students will be introduced to performance as a phenomenon.  The centrality of the body as a performing instrument is encountered in music, dance and theatre.  The possibilities of working with the material body have been explored in various ways in different parts of the world and at different times, sometimes anchored in the physical, sometimes looking towards transcendence.  This transformative process is the subject of both the practical as well as the theoretical component of this course. Participation in performance exercises will be required. (Open mainly to first-year students)


Developing Performance Skills

Faculty: Navtej Johar

Honing the body as an instrument of expressive communication, the course is both practical and discursive.  Some of the aspects of performance to be covered are physicality, expression, spatial design and sensory experience. (Open to all students)


Production Skills

Faculty: Navtej Johar

This class will serve as a laboratory for building scenes or units of performance.  Using interactive methodologies, students will participate in the creation of a performance, either based on a previously existing dramatic 'text' or something created for the first time. The focus will be on tenaciously crafting a cohesion between the various possible facets of performance art. (Open to those who have completed either The Performing Body or Developing Performance Skills)


Performing Arts Repertoire

Faculty: Justin McCarthy

This course is designed to engender performance.  Project-based, the course will see students in small groups creating performance pieces.  The premise of each piece will be argued and supported by research and reading.  These pieces will include aspects of music, dance and theatre. The professors will act as guides and/or creative mentors. (Open only to fourth year students)


Bharatanatyam Practice and Theory

Faculty: Justin McCarthy

Bharatanatyam is both a performing art and a repository of multiple histories. This course will include a practical dance component as well as a comparative survey of the art form's other aspects through a survey of connected aesthetic theories and socio-cultural histories. (Some previous experience in dance, and in particular Bharatanatyam, is required)

Performing Arts Minor