Tory Irgang introduced Sukanya Burman of Sukanya Burman Dance.

Sukanya Burman was born and raised in Kolkata, India. 

She has degrees from St. Xaviers College and Martha Graham School of Contemporary Dance. She is a professional dancer with roots in dance that is native to India as well as Modern dance. Sukanya has received recognition both in the US and abroad for her artistic talent and innate leadership. 

She and her husband have been living in the Jamestown area full time since 2020. She has become a recognized leader, locally, regionally, and statewide for dance and the arts, as well as an advocate for the nonprofit sector. She has heightened the awareness of funders regarding the importance of supporting organizations led by artists of color. She is a member of DanceForce and NYSCA. 

In 2023, Burman established Sukanya Burman Dance, a contemporary dance company located in Jamestown NY, that mobilizes the expressive techniques of Indian diasporic dances and modern dance to explore compelling ideas and create shared visual experiences. Sukanya Burman Dance aims to explore different ways of movement in the human body to tell stories relevant to our world today.

Sukanya’s presentation included discussion of dance as a tool for social change. Dance is described as a sport with body movements. Dance has been around for thousands of years.  Dance is divided into theatrical dance and participatory dance. Classical dance includes ballet, but it is the newest of classical dance from the 15th century. Russia became the center of ballet. Modern dance emerged, in the beginning of 20th century, as a rejection of ballet. In the 1920s the dance transformed and then into Post Modern dance including Contemporary dance. Dance evolved to include more of an activism. There has been a need for other voices in Dance Arts. She moved to Jamestown during the pandemic. Chautauqua County has limited dance opportunities post high school. The dance company is a 501c corporation and tries to price their programs for lower income students. They did their first dance performance in November. Their studio is located on Second St. above Chautauqua Music.