Thursday, January 29, 2009

Life of an Indian freestyle dancer

My name is Priya Gonsalves.
I was born in Mumbai 1984, when the only stuff to watch on television was hansel and gretel and giant robot.
I am a freestyle dancer. I taught myself to dance, i wouldnt say taught cuz I just knew how to dance from as far back as i can remember.
I am not clear as to what drew me towards this amazing energy of urban street style dances, as it was not within my immediate surroundings or reach, however some things i do rememeber.
I think my introduction to some of these stylez was a vcr casette my grandmother bought for me and my older brother , who was a Michael Jackson impersonator lol.
I think it was BREAKIN, the movie with shabadoo, whose name i only really became acquainted with last year, even though watchin this movie when i was 4 or 5 years old, sparked some sort of love for i guess you could say STREET ,URBAN dance within me.
I remeber vividly, the crazy clothes, the earings, the colours, everything.
For a 5 year old in India , this was so far from my reality, yet I found it do strangely appealing and fascinating.
I do not the intricacies behind the making of the film, as i recently find out that people from that era may have been opposed to the commercialization of these dance styles, but i am nevertheless grateful that at age 5, i was somewhat introduced to this world, that has 20 years later, continued to be a large part of my life.
I think me and my brother called the movie BOOGALOO, not sure why?
All i know is thats what we called it.
Everytime me or my brother were sick , my mom dropped us at my grandmoms for the day, and our treat was a slab of ice cream and BOOGALOO or more accurately Breakin.
I must have seen that movie like 20 times, but as the years passed my memory faded, but i guess somewhere in the back of my mind the seed was sown as far as my love for dance was concerned.
I find my story with dance, strange and liberating in many ways, as it has been a wonderfully bizarre journey that has defined my life in many ways.
Ive had to quit cuz of long standing injuries, ive had critisisms from dance companies that i joined, that did not understand my style of dancing and generally people not relating to my love for a dance form that most people think lacks the technique as compared to its more classical counterparts.
All i know is the freedom of movement associated with house dance, wacking mixed with african and latin mixed with hip hop and breaking etc etc is something i cannot describe when i see.
It is everythin and nothing, it is raw and eloquent, powerful and sensual.
I am still a baby in this world, and as the days pass by , i explore it more and more and am amazed by its endless possibilities, its like drinking out of a pool of expression, one that can never run out.
I danced tonight at the club.. nothing compares to this feeling.
I feel so alive!

1 comment:

nitzs said...

Nice to know about you Priya. Wish u all the best in ur career in dancing..