June 6th, 2019
What’s your story?
I was born in Los Angeles because my parents lived there at that time. When I was two, we moved to The Bay Area. I live now in San Jose.
When did you start dancing?
From age five, my parents placed us, me and my sister, in Indian classical dancing school and I’ve been dancing kathak for 10 years now. Now, I am a Kathak dancer for the Antara Asthaayi Dance Company. Being so young, it was really difficult for me to bring emotion, experiences and acting into dancing. Now, I can analyze my hands, my feet, the movement of my body. But only after many hours of practice and hard work at home, in the garage, I was able to lose myself in dancing.
Can you describe your costume?
My dress is called a Lehengha and it’s traditionally a North Indian dress. As I am North Indian myself, lehengas quickly became a part of my Indian clothing attire. It’s a special type of lynga that people wear for dancing all the time. It’s very traditional, it has lots of colors and it’s bought from India. I don’t remember when I got it, it was so long ago. The thing is that this costume fits you as long as you want it to fit you. You can adjust it as time passes because its design is flexible. Also, since I’m practicing a dynamic dance, I have chosen a light costume, short enough that it wouldn’t touch the ground, and made of a soft fabric.
Are you attached to this costume?
Yes, because I wear this costume at the Dandiya festival, and all my good memories are connected with it. Dandiya is one of the biggest events that happen in Bay Area. About 1.000 people gather in a high-school gym and dance like crazy for hours and hours. So, we have to wear something comfy in order to walk around, jump around in dance. It’s the most fun thing ever. I have all my friends there with me and we just keep on dancing, drinking lots of water and having fun for an entire night.