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About: About Us


Our performance and community projects strive to amplify women's voices and share real-life stories of women in the 21st Century.

We bring people together through our  performance work, community projects, workshops and events - all of which combine dance, music, theatre and costume design. We aim to create collaborative, cross cultural and interdisciplinary work that speaks in multiple tongues.

Chhaya Collective was founded by Kay Crook in 2013 to connect artists in Bangalore (India) and Devon (UK). Kay worked between UK and India for 8 years and initially formed Chhaya as a means to engage artists in cross-cultural collaborative projects, in response to societal issues. 

Chhaya Collective deliver projects nationally and internationally and are Company in Residence at Pavilion Dance South West (PDSW) 2021-24 and Associate Company at Exeter Phoenix Theatre.

Chhaya has toured and delivered projects for Attakkalari Centre for Movement Arts (India), PERA School of Performing Arts (North Cyprus), Pavilion Dance South West (UK), McMillan Theatre (UK), Exeter Phoenix (UK), Kerala National Theatre (India), LABarts (Portugal), AMATA (UK), Landmark Theatre (UK), Teatro Bandeira (Portugal), FITIJ Festival (Portugal), 101 Outdoor Arts (UK), Hall for Cornwall (UK), Shoonya Centre for Arts and Somatic Practices (India), Tanzart- Kirschau (Germany), Lshva (India), Barbican Theatre (UK), Sheffield EnableUS (UK), MOTUS (UK), Northcott Theatre (UK), Royal Academy of Dance (UK), Atheneaum (UK), ACASO Festival (Portugal), Tacchi Morris (UK), InspirED (UK), The University of Chichester (UK), Cygnet Theatre (UK), University of Bedfordshire (UK) and WOW Festival (UK), amongst others.

Kay Crook founded Chhaya Youth Dance Company in 2015, for aspiring dancers aged 12-21 years to engage in professional level, diverse dance training in Devon. Chhaya Youth were selected to represent the South West at the National UDance Festival 2023 and 2018.

Chhaya Collective's touring works and projects have been supported by Arts Council England, Dance in Devon, Exeter Phoenix, FUSE Diverse Dance, AMATA, UOB, Barbican Theatre, Dartington, 101 Outdoor Arts and PDSW. Our previous UK-India work was supported by  Asian Arts Agency UK, Shoonya (India), Attakkalari Centre for Movement Arts (India), Arts Council England and the British Council.

Chhaya Collective have been commissioned to make work for Mapdance Company (UK) (2023), PERA School of Performing Arts (North Cyprus) (2019), Arts University Bournemouth (UK) (2022), The Remarkables (UK) (2022), Grace & Growl (UK) (2022), FITIJ Festival (Portugal) (2019), 3Fall Dance Company (UK) (2021), Attakkalari Centre for Movement Arts (India) (2016) and Bath Spa University (2023).

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'Chhaya are empowering women through movement arts - it's a powerful way to break the stereotypes"

Bangalore Times (india)

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Kay Crook is a freelance dance artist and Artistic Director of Chhaya Collective, a female-led contemporary dance company, working between Devon and India since 2013.

Kay choreographed Chhaya's international touring productions, Falling Light, HYMNOS and KHAOS and has been commissioned to make work for Mapdance (UK), PERA (North Cyprus), Attakkalari (India), 3Fall (UK), Grace & Growl (UK), BSU Dance (UK), FITIJ (Portugal).  

Kay is the Founder and Director of Chhaya Youth Dance Company (who represented the South West at UDance Nationals 2023 and 2018) and Wild Workshops for Women, delivered with PDSW and WOW Festival.

Kay has been Associate Lecturer for Attakkalari and PERA and worked with PDSW, WOW, Kerala National Theatre (India), 101 Outdoor Arts (UK), Barbican Theatre, Tanzart-Kirschau (Germany), LAB-Arts (Portugal), In2it Festival (Norway) and HIFA (Zimbabwe), amongst others. 

Kay is also a Movement Director, directing for Le Navet Bete, Northcott Theatre, Cygnet Theatre, Aileen Gonsalves (Butterfly Theatre), Oxford School of Drama and Southwark Playhouse.

Kay currently works as a performer with State of Emergency, Chhaya Collective and Heather Walrond Company, touring ‘The Rising’ nationally and internationally, 2015 - 2019, in collaboration with VOU Dance Company (Fiji).

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