Parliament chooses Akademi to lead the dance for Olympic Celebration

  • Arts in Parliament will take place from June to September 2012, in venues in and around Westminster
  • South Asian dance organisation Akademi are the only dance organisation invited to take part in this prestigious event.
  • Akademi will produce two new dance pieces, to be performed 6 July and 10 August 2012
  • More information:


London-based South Asian dance organisation Akademi have been selected from among the UK’s leading Arts organisations to take part in Parliament’s Olympic arts initiative, Arts in Parliament.  They are the only dance organisation to have been invited to contribute. 

The prestigious series of events, which will be Parliament’s own contribution to the Cultural Olympiad, will see a unique cultural programme take place over the summer of 2012 in and around Westminster.  The programme will include showcases from artists and arts organisations from across the UK.

Akademi will be presenting two newly devised dance pieces which will reflect it’s duel activity of pioneering new visions of dance and using dance as a tool for social benefit.  The new pieces will also use their trademark combination of classical South Asian dance synthesized with contemporary dance practices, staged in the historic Westminster Hall. 

The first work, which will be performed on 6 July, will be a large-scale immersive dance spectacular, which will include a substantial ensemble cast, interactive elements and video projections.  This new piece will be among one of the most ambitious works ever devised by the organisation.

The second work, which is scheduled to take place on the 10 August 2012, will involve many participants from community organisations in which Akademi plays a crucial role.

Both of these new works will be developed over the next nine months and will use the themes and values of the 2012 games as inspiration.

Mira Kaushik, Artistic Director of Akademi said It is a tremendous honour to be representing UK dance at this wonderful initiative.  In 2012 London will become the focal point for a great cultural exchange, and it is these values that are central to the ethos of Akademi.  The two new pieces we will be devising will have at their heart Akademi’s commitment to pioneering new visions of dance performance in new spaces, celebrating the cultural variety of London and using dance as a vehicle for social change.”

Lord Hall of Birkenhead Chair of the Cultural Olympiad Board and advisor to the Arts in Parliament programme, said: “I am delighted to see that Parliament has put together such a strong programme of events for the Olympic year.

“Hosting the Olympics in London is a huge opportunity to showcase everything that this country is good at. We are world leaders when it comes to the arts and creative industries and the Cultural Olympiad is about celebrating this and getting as many people as possible involved in cultural activities.

“The Arts in Parliament programme is a great example of this, showing innovative, exciting work in the special surroundings of Westminster Hall and engaging with new audiences.”



Press contacts and images:

Susannah Glynn -; 020 7221 7883

Maxim Bendall -; 020 7221 7883

Notes to Editors

About Akademi

Akademi ( is the leading organisation working with choreographers and dancers to produce and develop South Asian dance in the UK. For over 30 years Akademi has pioneered new visions of dance, synthesising classical and contemporary influences - and contributing to the cultural exchange that is now part of the creative DNA of the UK. In addition, the organisation’s internationally recognised and respected community outreach programme mobilises South Asian dance for learning, creativity and well-being. Akademi innovate a rich year-round programme of work, from large-scale outdoor spectaculars to intimate productions for unusual spaces and venues (details of 2011 programme below).
Twitter: @akademi
Facebook: akademidance

Mira Kaushik, Director, Akademi

Mira Kaushik was appointed Director of Akademi (formerly known as the Academy of Indian Dance) in 1987, since when the organisation has excelled as a strategic arts development body of global importance through its work with audiences reaching millions. Born in Yugoslavia Mira was educated at Delhi University and has lived in London since 1982. In 2007 she was awarded an Honorary Order of the British Empire for services to dance.

About Arts in Parliament

The 'Arts in Parliament' programme is Parliament’s contribution to the 2012 Cultural Olympiad and will include showcases from artists and arts organisations from around the UK.

The curated programme of projects and original work will fuse arts, heritage and media and will be Parliament’s signature cultural programme inspired by 2012’s Cultural Olympiad.

More information on Arts in Parliament can be found here: