Location: Preston | UK
Sitakumari is the Director of Heartstone, the national non-profit organisation dedicated to challenging prejudice and intolerance and building understanding and contact across different nationalities, cultures, faiths, races and backgrounds to see a common human story. She is first and foremost a dancer and storyteller with a lifelong creative career. She was initiated into the oldest style of Indian classical dance, Bharatanatyam by her mother, a student of the famed Ram Gopal, Following her Arangetram, Sitakumari performed widely across the UK and Europe as a classical dancer and then in her own contemporary style in which she performs and teaches today. Her passion is to use the storytelling medium of dance to bring people together and tell stories people may not have heard. She has set up a network of contacts across the world with people who bring stories to her for this purpose. The most important story in her portfolio is ’The Heartstone Odyssey’, the book which led to the formation of Heartstone in 1990 and her aim is to give life to the heroine of the story, Chandra. Sita organises all Heartstone’s photo assignments, stages exhibition and performance events, and leads the UK-wide programme of Story Circles which use Heartstone stories as the vehicle through which to raise awareness of the issues raised through them with children and young people.