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The Namaha Team


Naina Shastri

Founder and President

Naina is the Founder/Director of Namaha Foundation for the Arts and the Artistic Director of Ushanjali School of Dance a premier dance academy in the Tri-Valley Area, CA. She is also an Instructor of Bharatanatyam at the Mahea Uchiyama Center for International Dance, Berkeley has been a RAW resident artist at SAFEhouse for the Arts, SF and a Member of the San Ramon City Arts Advisory Council.


Nalini Kalavacharla


Nalini is a HR manager by profession and an ardent Rasika of traditional arts.  She has been a  part of  Namaha since its inception and finds happiness in channelizing  her love for the arts in a productive way by helping plan their events.

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Hari Mankude


Hari has a master's from UCSB, is a distinguished engineer in a tech firm in the bay area. He has been involved with Namaha since its inception.

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Sahana Manjunath


Everything about Indian classical dance fascinates her - the sound of bells, music, beats, feet tapping, mudras, costume, and makeup. The art of dance brings her joy, and as a part of Namaha, she feels gratified to be connected to her cultural heritage. Sahana has been a part of Namaha Foundation for 4 years.

The Youth Wing


Anusha Pai

Youth Team Lead

Anusha is a senior at Dougherty Valley High School. She has been dancing at Ushanjali School of Dance for about 10 years and has performed all around the bay area. In her spare time, Anusha enjoys reading, vocal/instrumental music, and photography. She also loves to learn about other types of dance. Anusha has been a part of Namaha for 2 years and hopes to promote arts from a variety of cultures through this foundation.

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Sindhoori Kalavacharla

Head of Tech and Marketing

Sindhoori is a rising junior at Dougherty Valley High School. She has been dancing for around 12 years, won prizes at the Papanasam Sivan Dance competitions, recognized with an honorable mention in March 2019 for the SRV Student Recognition Project,and completed her Bharathanatyam Arangetram in 2019. Besides dance, Sindhoori also has a passion for business and social media marketing. She has been a part of Namaha Foundation for 4 years and is excited for all that is to come.


Maya Mankude

Assistant in Tech and Marketing

Maya is an 8th grader at Windemere Ranch Middle School. She is the daughter of Naina Shastri and has been a part of Ushanjali School of Dance since the school started. Maya has performed at various solo and group dance events in the bay area and has won a prize at the Papanasam Sivan Dance competitions. Some of her favorite hobbies include playing piano, art, and clarinet.  Maya has also been learning Kathak for the past 5 years. She has been a part of Namaha Foundation for the Arts since its founding. 


Ritu Kirsur

Co - Volunteer Coordinator

Ritu is a high schooler attending Quarry Lane. She loves reading, listening to music, watching youtube and dancing. Ritu has been dancing for 9 years now, and has completed the Madyama Purna level of the Akhila Bharatiya Gandharva Mahavidyalaya classical dance exam. She has been a part of Namaha for around 2 years.

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Rhea Manjunath

Co - Volunteer Coordinator

Rhea is a rising junior at California High School. She has been pursuing Bharatanatyam for the past 10 years at Ushanjali School of Dance, and has been part of the Namaha Foundation for Arts for 4 years now. She has performed in many solo and group dance events and was also recognized with an honorary mention in March 2019 for the SRV Student Recognition Project in the dance category. Other than dance, she loves to sing, read, and hang out with her friends and family!

Our Volunteers


Sahiti Guduru 


Khushi Bypan


Roshni Aradhya

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Shivani Anand


Ankita Biswas


Ananya Dasannacharya


Sanjana Prashanth 


Praneeta Aagrawal

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