The acclaimed UK-based dancer Aakash Odedra explores his own childhood struggles with learning disabilities through a nexus of light, sound, design and movement.

Odedra creates work that is visually beautiful, heart-wrenching and heart-warming, and full of drama and movement. Murmur 2.0 explores Aakash’s battles with dyslexia and how the world around him responded to his perceived disability. Diagnosed at a young age, Aakash found conventional education at school very challenging. He felt defined by his learning difficulties, but not his abilities. As written language was so alien, dance became his preferred mode of expression. In this groundbreaking piece, he uses his own childhood struggles with learning disabilities as a springboard into a deep and meaningful investigation of warped and exaggerated realities. Set to an evocative score by Nicki Wells, Murmur 2.0 reveals the tension that exists between the rational world that we live in and the richness of our imagination. This collaboration between Odedra, Australian choreographer Lewis Major, and Ars Electronica Futurelab of Linz, Austria, explores how the misconceptions of dyslexia can be revealed through visual design, light, sound, and movement. Odedra presented an excerpt of the work as a TED Talk at TEDGlobal in Rio De Janeiro in 2014. Inspired by South Asian classical dance, contemporary dance, and collaborative partnerships in creating his intensely personal works, Odedra has become one of the most sought after choreographers in Europe.

“It’s the dance equivalent of a red-carpet event … establishes Odedra as a dancer to follow.” —The Guardian


Aakash Odedra is an award winning contemporary British dancer. He trained in Kathak with Nilima Devi (Leicester) and Bharat Natyam with Chitraleka Bolar (Birmingham) and later in India with Asha Joglekar and Chhaya Kantaveh. In 2009, Aakash performed a solo choreographed by Kumudini Lakhia titled Maati Re at the Svapngata Festival at Sadler’s Wells curated by Akram Khan. Khan followed this with a period of mentorship, allowing Aakash to develop contemporary movement. Aakash Odedra Company was formed in 2011 and the debut project saw Aakash working with celebrated choreographers Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui, Russell Maliphant and his mentor Akram Khan, shadowing the development of several of their works as they each created solos for him. The culmination of this process was presented in the full evening work, Rising, which continues to tour extensively throughout the world.

More recently his own choreographies range from large-scale classical evenings to contemporary works and opera, such as the Theatre Freiburg production of God’s Little Soldier (2013). He worked with the Apollo Theatre in New York on Get on the Good Foot (2013), an evening of work that celebrated the life and work of James Brown, his piece Ecstasy got rave reviews in North America, earning him a Bessie Award.

This evening length version of Murmur 2.0 has been co-commissioned by The Arts Center at NYUAD.