Acknowledged by connoisseurs as a solo dancer of repute and a creative choreographer of rare calibre, Prerana Deshpande is among the leading complete solo Kathak dancers of her generation. Internationally acclaimed as a creative dancer whose work reveals the perpetually expanding horizons of the traditional form, Prerana is regarded for her exquisite command over the fundamentals of Kathak - Rhythm, Grace, & Expression and for her creativity rooted in the tradition of this dance form. Greatly appreciated by all audiences for her expertise in Kathak, she is regularly invited to perform as a solo artist at all major venues and festivals in India and abroad.
Prerana believes Kathak as means for artistic expression. Her choreography presentations of various classical as well as theme-based subjects are applauded by classes and masses alike. Her evolving body of work of choreography and collaborative productions, which includes music of varied genre, highlights her keen awareness about musical aesthetics.
" I believe that in any art form, reflection of the artist's individuality and personality in their art, makes them a complete artist. Deep knowledge of the art under the guidance of a Guru, intense training and true passion are the only ways to achieve it." says Prerana.
Recipient of numerous awards, Prerana has been felicitated by legendary Pt. Birju Maharaj with 'Gaurav Puruskar'. Prerana has also been honoured with the title of 'Nrityashri' and was conferred the title of 'Singar Mani' by the Sur Singar Samsad of Mumbai.
Prerana believes it to be divine blessing that the great maestro, Guru Dr. Rohini Bhate accepted her as a disciple and thought fit to impart one-to-one teaching of Kathak. Prerana is a first student of Rohiniji who passed Master of Arts (M.A.) form University of Poona and stood first in the Dance. She was awarded National Scholarship by Government of India for two years for special training under Guru Rohiniji. In her own words,
“In my studentship with Rohiniji of over 22 years, I had the good fortune not only to learn under her special guidance but observe and be a part of her creativity. I was greatly influenced both intellectually and emotionally by the genius of Rohiniji. I am proud to say that my dance is greatly influenced by Rohiniji’s both in style and substance. The most important learning for me from Rohiniji was that Kathak was a way of life to be lived respecting tradition and innovating at the same time.
Before learning from Rohiniji, I learnt for about 8 years from Smt. Sharadini Gole who developed love for Kathak in me. While learning from SharadiniJi, I got the opportunity to perform in one of Rohiniji's choreography as a replacement. Then on, Rohiniji accepted to teach me directly and from then, it went on for next 22 years till her passing away in 2008."
Prerana had the good fortune to have observed Rohiniji during the phase when most of her choreographies were created and perform as the lead dancer in almost all of them even as her career as solo dancer blossomed through invitations to perform in all major festivals in India.
Prerana encourages and promotes Kathak as a traditional, pure, solo art form. This she does through numerous workshops, seminars and lecture demonstrations where she is often invited in India and abroad.
Prerana shares her knowledge and experiences as a Kathak dancer as a Guru at Centre of Performing Arts at Pune University and through her own institute - NRITYADHAM.