Bollywood Bananza

Posted by on Apr 27, 2020 in Blog

Before the country went into lockdown, like the rest of you I was out and about doing my usual wandering around, looking for new things to give a go. One of these included the Bollywood dancing sessions at Sightlife.

If you’re looking for something new to try, or just love to move and shake those hips – it could be your next love. When we’re all free again of course!

When it restarts the sessions are every Thursday in the activity room of SightLife (formerly Cardiff Institute for the Blind) between 11am and 12pm – priced at only £2.

The session is led by an extremely passionate lover of dance named Anum Munawar. She started her love for Bollywood dance from the age of 12 until she was about 15 but then had to stop due to other commitments. But! Due to Anum’s love for dance she recently expressed her desire to continue with it which developed into her leading these dance sessions at SightLife.

Anum’s passion for dance is easily noticeable. The way in which she speaks about dance is undeniably infectious! You just want to get up there, let loose and get moving to the beat.

Why should you try it? SO MANY REASONS PEOPLE! These include (and these are straight from the mouth of Anum):

1. These sessions give you an opportunity to meet new people and make new friends while participating in an activity you probably haven’t done before.
2. Using dance as a platform this can really help develop your spatial awareness, which is really important for a Visually Impaired person. Having that awareness of the things and people around you is really useful, as this develops independence and confidence too.
3. Everything works together and simultaneously – meaning your body is in sync with itself. Through dance you learn to move your body in time to a rhythm and because in Bollywood dance each movement causes another reactive move it helps your body to swing naturally to the beat.
4. Finally, Anum feels that people with Visual Impairments are more likely to learn, what she calls, “true music”. This is because you’re not concentrating on the teacher at the front of the class and checking what others are doing. You concentrate more on the music, the rhythm, the lyrics, the beat and the emotion of the song.

So, What is it that Anum likes most about this type of dance? “The emotion” – When you dance Bollywood, you don’t go back. The emotion of the song and dance just pours out of you, You feel it all. For example, when I (Meg P) went to the taster, the song was all about love. One particular line, when translated into English, basically meant a “heart kite” – Anum tried to explain to us the meaning behind this and in her words “it’s a kite of Hearts, that fly away to your loved one”.

The final thing to finish off Anum’s love for Bollywood – the costumes – of course. The bright and beautiful clothing that you get to wear while performing the dance are so elegant and mesmerising.

Whether you’re just looking for a new and different way to have fun, exercise or just de-stress – give it a go, you’ll be surprised how much fun you have.

Written By Megan Price

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