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Arts 21 Dec 2015

Dancing Bharatnatyam is my Passion

By CIS Communications
Photograph by CIS Communications
by Maya Sharma, Grade 3 student, Tanjong Katong Campus -

TK Grade 3 student Maya reflects on her amazing journey as a Bharatnatyam dancer. Bharatnatyam is the Indian classical dance that encompasses music, rhythm and expressional dance.

I was only four years old when I started bharatnatyam classes. It was a fun activity for me, I didn’t know anything about performing. While it wasn’t hard to learn the dance, it required a lot of practice and help from my teachers.

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I took to the stage when I was six. The most apparent difference between performing and dancing in class is the makeup, wear jewelry and costumes needed to perform. It is a process that needs to be taken seriously as it takes 2 hours to get ready!

Last year I was in 2 performances. In one, my position was changed at the last minute and I found it very difficult and made several mistakes. This experience taught me a lesson about Bharatnatyam: even if you make a mistake, just carry on like nothing happened because your audience won’t realise. This year, I have learnt 3 repertoires and performed 5 times, 4 of which were group performances and 1 a solo dance. My performances have taken me to different and new places - I have performed at Singapore’s police headquarters, the Jurong Healthcare Hospital, the Buddhist library, CIS Diwali and Black Box.

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My favorite dance is one to a song called Azahage [a national award winning song]. It is a contemporary dance mixed with Bharatnatyam. My favorite dancer at the moment is an 8 year old girl called Shreya from Chennai. She does incredibly hard dance steps beautifully, ones I bet many adults can’t do. I admire that she can do solo performances so confidently. I am going to Chennai to learn and watch her dance during the December holidays. I am most excited that I will get to see Shreya in person.

Shreya and the great famous dancer Priyadarshini Govind are my inspiration. They inspire me to work harder and to perfect my dance practice. I have two gurus (aka teachers); Teacher Seema and Teacher Banu, whom I love and respect so much. Teacher Seema makes me love dance, while teacher Banu pushes me to better my technique. In the future, I would like to be a great and famous dancer like Priyadarshini Govind.

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