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Started by Jimish and Darshana Thakkar in early 2015, The Hive was the conceived as a space which would be used to spread the joy and teach the art of Drama to children. By mid 2015, The Hive adopted the Trinity College London curriculum and started structuring their courses in accordance with the guidelines of the Speech and Drama and Communication Skills programmes. This decision was taken in order to give our students something tangible to work towards, beyond the performance showcase at the end of each term.

So far, over 1500 students have appeared and successfully cleared various grades of the Trinity College examination.
The students of the Hive have performed mega productions such as The Adventures of Indiana (2016), The Boy Who Lived (2017), The Unfortunate Orphans (2018), Makdee (2018), and The Reader of Books (2019).

What started as a dream with 3 batches and 15 students a week, is now a well oiled machine that sees more than 300 students come over to our studio in Bur Dubai every week.
Due to growing demand, The Hive now has a presence in the JLT area of Dubai as well. We conduct classes on Saturday and Sunday at Malhaar Centre for Performing Arts in Cluster W, JLT. With Malavika Varadan at the helm since early 2019, The Hive is now comprised of a dedicated, driven, and dynamic group of women who are all deeply passionate about what they do.


Malavika Varadan first discovered her love for theatre when she was 13, with the Artists Repertory Theatre in Bangalore. She went on to act in several productions in the city with various theatre groups before she moved to Dubai to pursue her career in radio. She continued to act and be on stage both through her job and outside of it.

She has been with City 1016 for over 12 years waking up over a million listeners with her morning show, Breakfast no 1. She won the Khaleej Times Woman of Substance award in 2018 and was one among 11 women in the country to be recognized. She was featured as one of Masala's 100 most influential people in the UAE. Her ted talk on 7 ways to make conversation with anyone is one the most watched Tedx talks in the world - with 14 million views. She took The Hive over in January 2019.


Jenalyn, Jen to us, keeps The Hive buzzing. If you've ever called us at the centre, you've spoken to Jen. With a strong background in Business Management, Jen's role has been ever evolving and increasing since she joined us in 2016. She now handles all our finances and is instrumental in keeping our centre running and, more importantly, our teachers sane.


Alba Rose Quadros started her journey at The Hive in 2018. She has been a drama educator for over 6 years in Mumbai, starting her journey as a young drama teacher while she was graduating from Mumbai University with a major in English Literature. She is also a qualified special educator with a B.Ed. in Intellectual Disabilities.

She is highly experienced with teaching acting skills, theatrical set design, stage management, and working working with actors of various ages. One of her greatest passions is to see learners with different abilities take on theatre. Her passion project Determined and Dramatic has started with an aim to see inclusive change in Dubai.


Huda Bhaldar is a theatre artist, writer and director from Mumbai. She has been working with theatre productions and organising drama workshops for the last 7 years. She has an honours in English Literature from Mumbai University.

She has directed and acted in plays in Dubai as well. At the Hive, as a drama teacher, she enjoys working with kids aged 4 - 10. Her forte is working with adults, handling corporate projects at the Hive and taking care of tech for theatre productions. She is a fun and engaging trainer keen on making theatre more accessible and that it be used for the best benefits.


Wendy Burby is a trained teacher and transcultural counselor with 4 years of experience in education, both formal and otherwise. The primary focus of her programmes was to help students connect with and effectively articulate their interests, and their personal and professional goals.

Her background in counseling and psychology has enriched and deeply influenced her experience of teaching and interacting with the students. Always partial to a more facilitative style of instruction, she enjoys watching the process of each student blossoming and coming to life in their own unique way as the modules progress. She also brings her own experience of performing and working in the entertainment industry to the table.


Trinity College of London is a leading international exam board and independent education charity that has been providing assessments around
the world since 1877. With 850,000 candidates a year, in more than 60 countries worldwide,
Trinity qualifications are specifically designed to help students progress.

At the heart of Trinity's work is the belief that effective communicative and performance skills are life enhancing, know no boundaries, and should be within reach of all. For more details see