“Have feet will dance”--is the slogan for the Shiamak Davar’s bollywood dancing classes for kids. I strongly recommend these classes for kids ages 4 to 12. After that the kids join the adult classes. They are all over India and abroad too. In Bangalore itself there are about 12 centers for kids. There are typically 15 classes (twice a week for 2 months roughly) and they are expensive at Rs 2,800 (but worth it!).
(Phone numbers for cities at the bottom)
My kids, ages 7 and 5, had taken it this Jan 2008. They were both in the Children’s 4-6 year class. My kids had many of their classmates join in and they had a blast and so did we moms hanging out outside. They danced mainly to the song Bum Bum Bole from the movie Taare Zameen Par. We took the class in the Malleshwaram in Bangalore. I was surprised to see so much interest for bollywood dancing from Malleshwaram with its tradition of Carnatic music and Bharat Natyam.
My husband was skeptical before they joined. Quite the purist—Why bollywood dancing when they could be learning the piano or tennis or some other classical dance? I had to convince him. I love to dance and my kids are shy and straight in that respect. So when another mom called me and asked me, I thought why not—it will loosen them up. And will be fun with friends. And some form of exercise...
Along with all this, I was surprised to see how well run these classes were:
(I call them one of the “pockets of excellence” in India)
I heard my husband recommending this class to someone the other day. ;-)
I wish they did not have just bollywood stuff and temper with fun dance forms from all over the world like say African tribal dancing. They say “jazz” in their marketing but I did not see any jazz and only bollywood. Also, I heard some moms say that the kids seem to dance well in the class and forget the steps at home.
But overall I think they are great--exercise, loosening up, some flair for dance and fun. I think our little ones need some fun and not just serious classes. And really a little fun dose of bollywood is okay. ;-) Since they are short classes, many folks do these a few times and continue with Bharat Natyam or Ballet as well. We ourselves hope to take them once a year and have lots of fun. And we will continue with our piano or tennis...
Btw, they have classes for moms as well.
http://www.shiamak.com. The classes are run by SPIDA (Shiamak Davar Insititute for the Performing Arts). So click on SPIDA on the website.
Tel: + 91 11 26296590-94
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