I bring more than 20 years of experience in arts programming, research, special events, and grassroots marketing together with an equity lens to inform my work in socially accountable community engagement.
As a freelance curator, consultant, and speaker, I create dynamic experiences through arts programming, reach new audiences through grassroots marketing and strategy, and share knowledge in panels and presentations.
Since 2017, the Windows Series has deepened Strathmore's audience engagement and community connection.
Working in communication with the Programming and Education departments, I curate companion events to Music Center performances. These include panel discussions, lectures, and performances that highlight local community members and provide thought-provoking context for audiences. Post-show "Encore Cafes" offer opportunities for conversation and connection.
View Program Listing
L-R: Local artists and students perform in The Long Walk Goes On before Ladysmith Black Mambazo; Audience members gather in the Encore Cafe after a performance by Arturo O'Farrill and the Afro-Latin Jazz Orchestra with Dr. Cornel West; Grammy Award-winning vocalist Lila Downs. Photos by Jim Saah.
Years of assisting festivals behind the scenes, from managing The Kennedy Center's Millennium Stage programming for Ireland 100 to Fiesta Asia in DC, formed my early interest in festival curation.
I also worked for the Association of Performing Arts Professionals annual conference, APAP|NYC and the Dance USA conference
Recent highlights of my work include curating panels for Past Forward Dance Festival (Indian Dance Educator's Association) and Festival of Villains (Prakriti Dance Company) and serving on the selection committee for the 2020 Global Perspectives Festival (Dance Place).
Building Cultural Equity in Nonprofit Organizations
For my capstone at American University, I conducted extensive research on building culturally equitable nonprofit organizations by interviewing women leaders of color.
I gathered firsthand accounts of success stories by interviewing 22 women of varied ethnic backgrounds who work in wide-ranging artistic disciplines across the United States. The women’s experiences help us understand how they work in the context of an organization and, in turn, the concept of equity. The research has been listed on Academia.edu and referenced in many research papers.
IDEA Vision & Strategic Plan
Indian Dance Educator's Association
As CEO of the Indian Dance Educator's Association, I created a strategic plan to reflect the needs of the changing membership base, doubled the organizational budget through contributions and membership, increased IDEA’s presence online, and engaged members with innovative programming, including a virtual professional development conference in April 2020 during the global pandemic.
"Grassroots Marketing: Marketing with a Soul, Not Just Numbers" Pennsylvania Statewide Trainings, Americans for the Arts, 2020
“Building Audiences for Distinctive & International Programming by Harnessing Education, Grassroots Partners” Maryland Arts Summit, Maryland Citizens for the Arts, 2020 video
“The State of Racial/Cultural Diversity in Arts Leadership” Arts Administrators of Color, 2018
"By the People Festival" Storyteller, Halcyon, 2018
“Building Cultural Equity in Nonprofit Organizations” Graduate Capstone Presenter, American University, 2016
“Building Cultural Equity in Nonprofit Organizations” For Staff of United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, 2016
Panelist & Moderator
"Chai-Side Chats" Ep.2: Education and Representation of Indian Dance in the Diaspora video
"Dance Educators Affinity Group" Moderator Dance Place, 2020
"Where Am I? A Panel of Perspectives on Persistence and Optimism" Panelist, Dance Place, 2020 video
“Asian American Affinity Group Conversation” Moderator, Arts Administrators of Color, 2020
“Beyond Black and White” Curator and Moderator, Arts Administrators of Color, 2019
"Personal Branding for Career Advancement: Marjuan Canady, Philippa Hughes, Shruthi Mukund, and Patrick McCoy, Moderated by Ceylon Mitchell III" Panelist, Arts Administrators of Color, 2019
"Diversity and Representation in Dance" Panelist, DC Dance Summit, 2018
“Decolonization of the Arts” Panelist, Arts Administrators of Color, 2018
“Tradition vs. Innovation in Indian Classical Dance" Panelist, UTSAV Festival, 2015
Get in Touch
Whether you have a specific programming or strategy goal in mind or aren't sure where to begin, send me a note to get the conversation started! I am also available for panel and presentation bookings.
Shruthi Mukund is a freelance curator, consultant, and speaker.
After earning a B.S. in computer science from Bangalore University, Shruthi worked as a scientific writer for Astra Zeneca and Community Outreach Director and Choreographer for Natyabhoomi School of Dance in Gaithersburg, Maryland. Eventually, the arts side of her career won out and, after completing a rigorous 10-month internship in the Development and Education departments at Strathmore Hall Foundation, she embarked on her pursuit of an M.A. in arts management at American University. For her capstone project, she conducted extensive research on building culturally equitable nonprofit organizations by interviewing women leaders of color.
During her graduate work, Shruthi cultivated broad experience through assistantships and internships at local arts organizations, including Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company, Meridian International Center, the Harold and Sylvia Greenberg Theater of American University, the Association of Performing Arts Presenters, and the Kennedy Center. Following graduation, she worked as a Project Coordinator at Dance USA, where she helped facilitate its integration with Dance Heritage Coalition, and began her role as CEO of the Indian Dance Educator's Association. She then returned to Strathmore as Grassroots Marketing Manager, where she leveraged her experience to build long-term community relationships and create an intentional, sustainable strategy for grassroots work.
In addition to her freelance work, Shruthi is the Director of Community Engagement at Olney Theatre Centre. She also continues in her roles at Natyabhoomi School of Dance and the Indian Dance Educator's Association, sits on grant panels for local funding agencies, moderates panel discussions and affinity groups for local organizations, and has been invited to speak on a number of panels discussing the state of the arts. She is also an avid writer and tries to make sense of her world as a mom, professional Bharathanatyam Indian classical dancer, arts administrator, and lifelong learner through her blog, ShruMommyArtsManager. She lives with her family in the Washington, DC area.