SECRET SANTA 2018

I have mentioned this in many of my posts, but I wanted to describe one time where we truly bonded as a team. About three weeks ago, we had a dance class. We started to get obsessed with aesthetics and doing things together. This year, we took the challenge of organizing a secret santa.

You are probably wondering, why would it be a challenge?

Our dance group consisted of people from two different counties and states. Yes, I said states.

One of the dancers in our group lives in West Virginia. It is about a 90 minute drive to the dance class.

Anyways, it was a week after we decided that we wanted to do secret santa. We procrastinated till the next week to finally draw out names. All of us were scrambling to get our gifts for our friends, but it went successful. We all spent another hour after class eating fresh brownies and laughing about our struggles in finding a gift.

It is worth doing things with your friends who do not go to the same school as you. It is a group that I will never forget.

I hope everyone has an amazing winter break and spends time with family to enjoy the holidays!

Annual Dance Recital at Stone Bridge High School 2018

 

https://classic-kathak.webs.com/

 

 

 

 

 

KATHAK

In India, there are about seven types of Indian classical dance, Kathakali,Bharatnatyam, Kuchipudi,Odissi,Manipuri, and Kathak. There are other types of Indian dance, but this post will be focused on Kathak since I participate in this dance.

Now, what is Kathak?

Kathak is a dance where the performance has a certain moral that is portrayed through gestures,expressions, and no words. Generally, the music does not have a lyrics which gives the audience the chance to pay close attention to the dancers and try to understand the dance. Our costumes are dresses with a lot of decorations but easy to wear and dance in. Our make up is a little bit more than what the natural makeup would be like, we have bright red lips and an eyeshadow corresponding with the color of our dresses. We tie a long string of bells on to our feet that jingle when we have footwork in our dance.

Kathak, like other dance forms, are much more complicated than the description that I have provided, but I felt like it was necessary to give an overview of what type of dance I do.

Bangladesh Embassy (Year taken-unknown)

 

PERFORMANCE STRESS

This year was the 10th Annual Recital for Arpan Dance Academy, we were stressed out and it resulted in a very successful performance.

For us, at least. On stage, we are calm and collected, but backstage parents are scrambling to get makeup on kids,performers are practicing, kids are running around,props are lost, costumes are all over the place as well as shoes, parents are trying to shush their kids.

In other words, it is chaos.

Before the performance everyone is quiet and anxious. Our hands are sweaty from gripping our friend’s hands. We peek our heads from the side of the curtains to see any familiar faces. As they announce our names to perform, we smile at each other and it is almost as if we are saying “good luck”, but the words are unspoken.

 

All the stress has left our bodies as we enter the stage and make a promise to ourselves that this will be a good show.

 

Annual Recital at Broad Run High School 2017

DANCE FRIENDS

We have all dealt with the situation where you are with a group of people who you barely know. You have three options: pretend to not notice them and go on your phone, make an excuse to leave the room, or you could just simply try to interact with them. It seems hard at first, but talking and getting to know your group helps you enjoy the activity more.

For me, I had two friends in my class and we all went to the same school, but one of my friends and

In dance, there are scenarios where you have to work together to choreograph song. That choreography done between friends will be a lot better than choreography done by strangers. Since preschool, our teachers always stressed the importance of team work.

It is not a school skill. It is a life skill.

 

Anacostia Arts Center

 

 

 

STAGE FRIGHT

During a ride home from one of my performances, my dad asked me how I was not nervous to perform on stage in front of many people. I laughed at the question because I didn’t know the answer. Before any performance my dance teacher always told us to be calm, smile, and have fun on stage. I never took those words personally, but I now understand what she means. On stage, people aren’t nervous about messing up, they are usually nervous 

¨Shape of You¨ performance. Annual Recital at Stone Bridge High School 2018

 about what people will think about their performance. As a child, I never smiled on stage, but as I grew older, my dance teacher pushed us to smile and connect with the audience. About three years ago in Washington DC, there was a “Miss India Pageant”, I remember smiling and also singing the lyrics while dancing. I noticed that people enjoy the dance more when the performers smile and acknowledge the audience.

The one benefit of dancing on a high school stage is that the stage lights are so bright that you can’t see the audience, just face the front and do your thing.

 

LOVE FOR DANCE

¨Titli¨ Performance Annual Recital at Broad Run High School (Year taken- unknown)

We are encouraged to try things at a very young age to feel a spark to a particular thing. As an only child, my parents wanted me to try everything from karate to remembering prayers at an academy. My thought process as a five year old was to let my parents have the satisfaction of me trying new things, then bawl my eyes out and stop it. I eventually realized that I couldn’t sit at home and watch cartoons 24/7 so I started caring

My parents didn’t know about me secretly dancing in my bedroom to bollywood songs, but they did find out and decided to put me in a dance academy. I was with my friend so I  felt a little comfortable. As years passed on we grew up but my friend and I were separated because I took a small break from dance.That was my mind set eight years ago when I started dance.

When I came back to the academy, I found a friend and we talked, today she is one of my best friends along with seven other girls. As I grew older and danced more, I realized that it is important to enjoy what you are doing and who you are doing it with.

You should not feel restricted to have a conversation with them just about the sport or event that you are preparing for. One of my friends told me that she was afraid that she would be the black sheep of the group because we had been dancing for years, but we all were on that boat sometime in our life. You could say when you try something you don’t have the fear of the sport itself, but more of the people who will be with you.