Kanak Rele

Born on 11 June 1937 in Bombay, Shrimati Kanak Rele learnt Kathakali from Shri Karnnakar Paniker and Shri Raghavan Nair, Bharatanatyam from Shri Nana Kasar, and Mohiniattam from Shrimati Chinnammu Amma.
A pioneer in dance education and a leading Mohiniattam dancer, she founded the Nalanda Dance Research Centre in 1966 and Nalanda Nritya Kala Mahavidyalaya in 1973. As Dean of the Faculty of Fine Arts, University of Bombay, Shrimati Rele played a key role in introducing courses in dance and other arts in that university. For her research on Mohiniattam, she was awarded a Ph.D. by the University of Bombay. She has written a book on Mohiniattam; and several articles and papers. She has also experimented with dance therapy. She has performed widely, and has contributed several new compositions to the Mohiniattam repertoire.
Shrimati Kanak Rele has been conferred various honours including the Gaurav Puraskar of Gujarat in 1989 and the Padma Shri in 1990.
Shrimati Kanak Rele receives the Sangeet Natak Akademi Award for her overall contribution to dance in India.