“Dance is art, dance is music, dance is poetry, dance is literature, dance is geometry, dance is math, dance is simply everything”

 Maya Angelow

Bharatanatyam is one of the most ancient and traditional art forms of India that has originated from the Southern state Tamil Nadu. Temple Steps is a conventional Bharatanatyam dance academy located in Cochin aimed at promoting Indian classical dance across the globe. Temple Steps offers online and offline courses for students of all age groups starting from 6 years. Temple Steps was founded by Utthara Unni, daughter and disciple of Urmila Unni, through her journey and tutelage under various eminent Gurus in the field of dance. 

“If you ask me what’s my goal, it’s not about moulding perfect dancers. It’s about making the next generation understand the depth and significance of a rich art form like Bharatanatyam. I want the next generation to take the legacy forward.” – Utthara Unni


Temple Steps offers certificate courses in dance. For easier understanding they have been divided into three levels. The examinations will be conducted every year in December. However the pace of learning or grasping cannot be measured equally for every student. Hence some students may take longer than three years and some may finish the course in less than the mentioned time. Please note that a student only finishes learning the course, not the entire art form.


• Exercises necessary for a dancer
• Main Adavus
• Theory (Basics)
• Introduction to Music

On completion of the practical examination and viva, students are offered the certificate BRAHMA.  


This includes more theory and first few items of Bharatanatyam repertoire

• More Adavus
• Alarippu
• Jathiswaram
• Shabdam.
• Theory (Intermediate level)
• Music of each item
• Introduction to Thalam

On completion of the practical examination and viva, students are offered the certificate VISHNU. 


This includes advanced theory and advanced items in a repertoire

• Varnam
• Padam
• Thillana
• Music of each item
• Reciting Jathi of Varnam in Thalam
• Theory (Advanced)

On completion of the practical examination and viva, students are offered the certificate MAHESHWARA.  

Once a student finishes learning an entire repertoire, he/she will be given the privilege to conduct her Arangetram where he/she performs the entire Margam as a solo performer on stage. On completion of Arangetram, the student becomes a recipient of the THRIMOORTHY certification, which is awarded by UNESCO international dance council, Paris.

Online students and offline students will have to appear on the mentioned date in December every year for theoretical and practical examination which will be conducted by qualified external examiners.


There will be one annual programme for which all students will be given opportunities to perform. Determined and hard-working students will be given various opportunities to perform in temples and other festivals once they are eligible. Senior students, if interested, can travel along with Utthara to perform for her group productions. Solo performance opportunities will also be given to students with perseverance and dedication.

Contact us 

How to join ?

Reach out to us by calling us on
+91 7012956811 or email to templestepsdance@gmail.com or uttharaunniofficial@gmail.com

© Copyright 2023 - Utthara Unni