Astanding ovation to Jai Ho by University of California’s troupe on America’s Got Talent was a foot-tapping start. Foreign multinationals like Oracle and Cisco are taking Bollywood Dance to its crescendo. Having realised the soaring popularity of Bollywood Dance as a form of workout outside India, the two IT giants have recently introduced its sessions at their off-shore in-house fitness centers.
From NRI weddings, Bollywood Dance has joined the morning routines for foreigners, who’re thumping and grinding to Hindi numbers to stay in shape. While mushrooming Bollywood dance schools are a new thing in Amsterdam, Mauja Hi Mauja, Aahun Aahun and Dard-e-Disco are some hot favourites at YWCA Berkeley’s Bollywood Dance class where a session costs $10 and $15 (Rs 450-700) is the fee for a year-long membership. This has also fuelled a demand for Indian choreographers.
Choreographer Longinus Fernandes was swept of his feet by the response to his workshops in Atlanta and New York recently. “There was a record-breaking crowd with 95 per cent foreigners, who just wanted Jai Ho,” he says.
Fitness fundas apart, Bollywood Dance is the new trip to fun among foreigners. While the London Mela saw some 83,000 participants shake a leg to Hindi tunes, the upcoming Dance DC Festival in Washington DC on August 28 will open with a ‘Live! A Bollywood Experience’.
Says Rahul Choudhury (name changed), a Microsoft engineer who keeps frequenting its offshore centers, “Our campuses abroad are open to activities and I feel proud when my colleagues get excited about Bollywood dance classes.”