Fusing the ancient roots of classical Indian dance and hip-hop, Raja Kumari embodies "India in movement". Born and raised in California, Raja Kumari (Svetha Rao) is a proponent of three classical Indian dance styles: Kuchipudi, Bharathanatyam and Odissi. Performing her Arangetram (dance debut) at the age of 7 in the presence of chief guest Pandit Ravi Shankar, she managed to leave a lasting impression: “Svetha is beyond her years, a child prodigy.” Given the name Raja Kumari by her fellow MC’s (Sanskrit for “Indian Princess”) RK began recording by the age of 14 only to find her voice, two years later, as the lead singer of Styles Bliss.
Raja Kumari has raised over $80,000 for various charities through her solo performances: contributing to the building of a hospital in Bangalore and a meditation hall in South India for the Vegesna Foundation ( School for Physically Handicapped Children). She has also been named a benefactor of the Indic Foundation for her $30,000 fundraising performance towards the institution of a Hindu Studies Chair at The Claremont School of Theology. Raja Kumari is the recipient of the Kohinoor Award for Excellence in Classical Arts and Best of Best’s BOB4TALENT Competition. Combining intelligent lyrics and exotic melodies, Raja Kumari strives to make "music with a message.”
“Growing up in America, I had moments where I was confused about my heritage, and there was no one like me in the industry to look up to. I want to be that role model for the younger generations by presenting Indian culture to the world through my music and classical dance. My music is a reflection of my life's struggle. Struggles with myself, color, spirituality, religion, and voice have defined me as a person, and most importantly as an artist.
I've taken my career into my own hands now. Completely self-written and self-produced I look forward to releasing my debut album: "Ganges Flow" on (1.29.09) under my independent record label 129 records.