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Artistic Director Viji Iyer


Guru Viji aka Vijayalakshmi, the Founder and Artistic Director of Thillai Fine Arts NJ. Guru Viji Iyer hails from a family of deep traditions and strong cultural background from Tanjore globally knows as the seat of Carnatic music and Bharatanatyam. Her grandfather, Rajagopal Iyer was the founder of Nritya Kala Kendra in 1978 which was a center for performing arts in the heart of Chennai. Continuing her grandfather’s journey and dance initiatives, Guru Viji Iyer has established her dance school Thillai fine Arts in New Jersey.   She have had privilege to have a remarkable tutelage from  age of 6 under distinguished Guru’s

• Smt. Malathi Srinivasan who taught and practiced Kalakshetra style of Bharatanatyam,

• Smt. Chandrakala Jaganathan, an immediate disciple of “Padma Shree” Awardee Sri

Dhandayuthapani Pillai.  She was trained in Carnatic vocal under Guru Vairamangalam Lakshmi Narayanan and Guru Gowri Sankar.

Her arrangetram in 1984 (A debut performance) was an eye captivating experience for the dignitaries and public. The presiding dignitary Judge Krishnaswamy Reddiar and “Kalaimamani” “Padma Shree”awardee Guru Sudharani Raghupathy who witnessed the artistry thoroughly enjoyed the show and gave a very positive review on her performance.

She is a Recipient of following awards

Iyal Isai Nadaka Mandram Award" achieved the prestige of being selected by a Panel led by “Padma Bhushana” V.P.Dhananjayan for touring sponsored  fine arts festivals.

 Sri Thyagaraja Sangeetha Kala Samithi Award  - Vijayawada Andhrapradesh

Brahanatyanjali award - Thanjavur Tamil Nadu

"Nritya Kala Shree" award at 2018 International Dance festival at Kolkata India.

"Chidambaresa Natya Kalaimani" award 2019 by Thillai Natiya Anjali Trust, Chidambaram TN India.   

Shree Bharatha Kalanjali awarded by Kingdom of Cambodia 2023



Auditioned  and selected artist of National Broadcasting Television of India,

Inspiring Interview Featured in UPW0RDS magazine March 2018.  

Popular press reviews, collaboration with world class artists are the widespread admiration gained by Viji Iyer.  Her mesmerizing programs have been reviewed by popular press .

She was humbled by the honor of being Director of Bharatanatyam for Vedic Vidyalay NJ.  Ever aspiring passion to spread the knowledge of Indian classical dance incite her to publish “A Treatise on Bharatanatyam Book 1” which provides the origin, history, theory and illustrations of this fine art.


Remarkable global performances in leading Sabhas, Fund raiser events and Dance festival starting with her arangetram in 1984

Special performances among in-numerous others:

  • Jayasakthi Rajarajeswari’s 19th Anniversary celebration at Karuppur-Konerirajapuram-Tanjavur celebrations executed by Manthramurthi Swamigal K. Ramadas. 

  • Iyal Isai Nadaka Mandram of Chennai awarded Viji in a solo competitive selection judged by Sri. Dhananjayan. She was sponsered to represent Iyal Isai Nadaka Mandram to perform solo in Madurai, Ranipettai, Karaikudi and Chennai Mylapore Fine Arts Club.

  • Meenakshi Sundram Hall Madurai

  • Sri Thyagaraja Sangeetha Kala Samithi Vijayawada -Andhra Pradesh.

  • Third anniversary celebration of Sri Dandayudhapani Bharath Nattiyar Kalalayam at Mylapore fine Arts-Chennai.

  • Viji is a Chennai Doordarshan graded artist she has performed solo in the programs Kanmani Poonka, Valarum Kalainar,Nadana Arangam  etc.. .

  • Performed Jugalbandhi with leading artist in Kathak Archana Joglekar, Odissi and Mohiniattam for Indo American Festival 2015.

  • Performed Fund raiser at West Berlin Performing Art Center in MI

  • Choreographed the award winning program for TV Asia 2017 Madhyam competition

  • Natyanjali Pondicherry 2018

  • Breathtaking performance at Tanjore Brahan Natyanjali at the ancient Lord Brahadeeshwara temple 2018

  • International Dance Festival Kolkata Feb 2018

  • Performance at NJ Governor's Mansion for Asian American Pacific Islander Heritage celebration  May 2018

  • 2019 World Guinness Record performance by the students of Thillai Fine Arts at Sabhanayagar temple Chidambaram India.  Event presided by Dr. Padma Subramanyam

  • Performance at the prestigious Habitat World, India Habitat Center Stein Auditorium, New Delhi, India May 6th 2019

  • Performance at Global Natya Festival Angkor Wat Cambodia Feb 21st 2023

Dance Ballets Directed and choreographed 

Natya Veda - Indo American Festival 

Ardhanadhiswara -Shivaratiri

Soubhagya Kerala - to support fundraiser for Kerala floods 2018.   


Guru Viji Iyer is well trained and experienced in the art of   Nattuvangam
The art of conducting an Indian dance recital is known is as nattuvangam. To provide the beat structure (Thalam) for the performance, the nattuvangam artist plays a small set of cymbals and recites Solkattu (spoken rhythmic patterns). 

Degrees from accredited colleges

(Phd )Tamil University - Tanjaore ( Pursuing)

MPhil in Bharathanatyam - Tamil University, Tanjore

Masters in Dance - Annamalai University, Chidambaram 

Masters in Fine Arts - Kalai Kaveri College of Fine Arts, Tamil University, Tanjavur

Masters in Math - University of Madras, Chennai

Research articles and Thesis

Role of Digital Media to publicize Fine Arts - 2022  Kalai Kaveri College

Sathanar's Paniru Koothu - 2021 - Avinashilingam Institute - UGC Journal

Evolution of Bharatanatyam Mudras - 2020 - Rukmini Arundale's 116th Anniversary Souvenir

An Innovative learning strategy for fine arts - 2019  Bridge Academy

Gurukulam and Virtual Teaching Technologies - 2019 Tamil University 

Vatsalya bhavam in Peria Alvar's Peria Mozhi - 2018 - Tamil University,

                                                                                   Published on

Acquisition of knowledge of Natya - 2018 - Dr. MGR Janaki college of Arts 

Sapta Vidanga Stalam - 2017 - Annamalai University 

Role of Digital Media in publicizing Bharathanatyam - 2017 - Tanjore University 



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