SAN FRANCISCO (AP) -- Chitresh Das, a renowned practitioner and teacher of the kathak form of Indian classical dance, has died. He was 70.
Das founded the Chhandam School of Kathak in San Francisco. The school said in a statement that Das died in the San Francisco Bay Area on Sunday after suffering a tear in his aorta.
Das brought kathak to the U.S. in the 1970s around the same time that Indian classical music was gaining popularity in the country thanks to the likes of Ravi Shankar.
Kathak uses dance and facial expressions as a way to help tell a story. Many kathak pieces rely on ancient Indian epics as source material.
Das was known for his fast spins and powerful, rhythmic footwork accompanied by the sound of bells he wore around his ankles.