The Evolution of Bollywood

Traditional Bollywood Dance.Photographer: Stunning Captures

Traditional Bollywood Dance.
Photographer: Stunning Captures

All of us immersed in the art of Bollywood Dance are often asked this question: What is Bollywood? And of course there are some stereotypes and preconceived notions about Bollywood, which continue to exist. People imagine dancers running around a tree, some drama and a lot of hip shaking. But Bollywood can be so much more.

Exploring Contemporary Dance Photographer: Rob Kunkle

Exploring Contemporary Dance
Photographer: Rob Kunkle

Bollywood Dance is truly a reflection of Indian Pop culture and is much defined by the music produced in the Mumbai Film industry. Unlike Classical forms like Bhatarnatyam and Ballet, it is not the technique but the music that defines it. In the past, one would see Bollywood Dance influenced by various Folk and Classical Dance forms so it was much more traditional. Gradually Western social dance forms like Disco and Rock and Roll began seeping into Bollywood.

Influences of Hip Hop.Photographer: Rob Kunkle

Influences of Hip Hop.
Photographer: Rob Kunkle

Today, Bollywood has become truly global, encompassing various dance styles that exist in the East and the West. Jazz, Hip Hop, Salsa, Ballet and Contemporary have all been incorporated and fused with the traditional dance elements. One can see dancers doing double pirouettes and jetés, locking and popping and doing release work. This blend is what truly excites us, since  the possibilities are endless and there is room for tremendous creativity.

At Mona Khan Company, we embrace this unique fusion and the blend of the East and the West. Being a Bollywood Dance company existing in America, it is extremely relevant to our own vision. Our dancers come from eclectic dance backgrounds and continue to focus on the technical aspects of dance.

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Jazz. Photographer: Sapna Reddy

It is exciting to see Bollywood become more technical; to combine the mudras with intricate footwork and the emotional expressiveness with floor work. Dancers are aware of stretching their feet, holding their center and constantly training to become technically proficient. In our shows you see everything from the Bombay street dance style to Jazz, filmy masti to Contemporary interpretations. Bollywood is evolving in amazing ways and we are excited to be part of this evolution, and to bring our unique vision to the dance world.

Ready to explore!Photographer: Mahesh Mahbubani

Ready to explore!
Photographer: Mahesh Mahbubani

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