Poursine was born in New Orleans, the daughter of Augustine Poursine, the descendent of a French Creole family with deep roots in the city's history. Traveling extensively with her family in Japan, Europe, and the United States, she studied balled in Japan at age 6, continued in the United States and Germany until she was 17.

While studying ballet in Sendai Japan, she saw a performance of classical Thai dancing.  Though mesmerized by the elaborate Thai hand gestures, she continued her training in ballet, but was never satisfied until she saw some years later as an undergraduate a performance of  Bharata Natyam, the classical dance from South INDIA.


Smithsonian Institution funded Senior Fellowships

"Dances of Love" CPTV

1998 International Dance Festival

Dancing in the Millennium 2000

Denison University Residency 2000




Poursine was fortunate to find a supreme artist in the style - T. Balasaraswati.  She studied with the great dancer first in Berkeley, California, then in subsequent summer workshops on the West Coast. Balasaraswati, invited her to Madras (Chennai) for private classes, after which she received her M.A. from Wesleyan University.  Subsequently, she studied and performed in India with the support of three Smithsonian senior fellowships under the auspices of the American Institute of Indian Studies in 1982-83, 1986-87, and 1990-91.  Poursine's performances in India received rave reviews.

"Dances of Love" by Connecticut Public Television, produced by Nancy Savin, aired as part of the Festival India  1985 celebrations.  It is a documentary on Poursine's experiences performing and teaching.  She was also featured in the American Institute of Indian Studies "Salute to INDIA'85" Gala in Chicago.

The 1998 International Dance Festival at Connecticut College invited Kay to represent classical Indian dance on a roster of major artists presenting their performing traditions from around the world.

Dancing in the Millennium 2000 in Washington DC, July 19-23, invited Poursine to present a program of Tanjore Court style classical dance from South India.  Over 350 proposals from 21 countries were considered for this event.

Kay was in residence at Denison University, Ohio fall of 2001, where she performed and taught.  She gave a presentation of Tanjore court style dance at Ohio State University.

In addition to her teaching experience, Kay has contributed to scholarly performing arts journals, including "Balasaraswati's Style of Abhinaya," The Madras Music Academy Journal, (Chennai, INDIA), "Hasta as Discourse on Music," The Dance Research Journal (CORD), Sanskriti, and "The Meaning of the Lotus in Classical Indian Dance,"  The Golden Lotus Magazine (Taiwan).

Within her performance schedule Kay presents university level master classes and lectures across the U.S., Europe and India. Past hosts include University of Amsterdam, HOLLAND, the Madras Music Academy, INDIA, the Elgin Community College, IL, University of Oregon, Carnegie Mellon University, PA, Fairfield University, CT, Trinity College, CT, Fairfield Arts Center, IA, Denison University, OH, Bard College, NY and University of Georgia.



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photo: John Wareham