dance parade success story!

One of the primary goals of Dance Parade is to inspire and educate the general public to experience dance. Holly is one such person who has done just that. After witnessing the magic of NYC Bhangra (the Genre Buzz focus in the last issue of STEPS!), she was hypnotized into finding out as much as she could about the group and wanted to find out how she could become a part of it…we caught up with Holly and asked her a few questions…

When you first saw them perform. how long after that did you approach one of the members? What was it like learning a dance you were so unfamiliar with yet so determined to conquer?

* After seeing NYCBhangra at the 2009 Dance Parade and grabbing their card and checking out their website, it took me a few weeks to work up the courage to actually go to a class. Even though all the performers had such big smiles and spirits, I was still a bit shy since I had not danced for two years after tearing my IT band during a rehearsal. One Wednesday in June, I finally worked up the courage, dug my sneakers out of the back of my closet and hopped on the subway. Two months later, after lots of practice, countless hours on YouTube watching Bhangra performances and tons of iTunes downloads, I found myself on the Government of India’s float in the India Independence Day Parade down Madison Avenue. The weekend after that, we were in Harlem on stage at a “Glocal” (Global/local) festival showcasing Indian folk dance. While I work hard and practice often (much to the chagrin of my downstairs neighbors!), Bhangra in general, and NYCBhangra in particular, make all the time practicing and performing such a joy.

What future plans do you have for the group aside from Dance Parade of course?

* I see NYC Bhangra bringing the joy an spirit of the dance to all cultures in New York.. and beyond! We are looking forard to collaborations and fusion performances as both cultural education and entertainment. We have recently begun kids classes in New York and New Jersey and have several performances coming up that you won’t want to miss! We are all over the area, so check out for the most up to date schedule of events!

Do you have a background in other styles of dance?

* I began dancing at a very young age and studies ballet and jazz until high school when I began hip-hop classes as well. Even though I would have never guessed it, there are many similarities between all the styles and as Bhangra becomes more popular and its moves are infused with hip-hop influences and even more theater/jazz styles, such as in a Bollywood number, I use my earlier training a lot!

In a few words, tell us some major things that have changed in a grand way since you dove into Bhangra…

* I am in much better shape! Bhangra is all about the cardio, the core and the arms and it is a really great way to get in shape without even noticing you are working out! I also have been learning so much about Indian culture and meeting so many wonderful people – whether it is in class, at events, or at the clubs. I am truly thankful for all the opportunities that have presented themselves through NYC Bhangra! I feel that I am really getting the chance to experience New York City through dance – and who could ask or anything better than that?!

One Response to “dance parade success story!”

  1. I love bhangra!! Nice read, check out this song on YouTube, pretty cool:

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