The Nartananirnaya by Pundarika Vittala which was from the late Mughal period describes a style that was practiced by Persian dancers. From the description we can recognize that it was Kathak, a style brought by court dancers from Persia to India during the Mughal rule.

Born Robindro Shaunkor Chowdhury on April 7, 1920 at Varanasi, Pt Ravi Shankar joined his brother Uday Shankar’s dance troupe at the age of 10 and toured the world. In 1937 he gave up dancing and returned to India to start learning classical music and sitar from Allauddin Khan.

Indian women dancers have been going to the US to perform since 1880. Three devadasis were extradited in 1907 for overstaying in the US. By 1907 to 1911, many naachwaalis and devadasis stopped appearing on US stages because of anti-Asian immigration laws.
(Priya Srinivasan, Natya Kala Conference, Dec 2012)

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