Day 2: Future dancers of India initiated
- Veejay Sai, Bangalore 
Pics: NDUB

November 28, 2011

One had to see it to believe, over ten thousand excited children of all ages with the parents spread into every inch and corner of Bangalore’s most prominent UB city for the first time ever. On the second day of the Namma Dance Utsav, Bengaluru, the dancers of the Natya STEM Dance Kampni conducted workshops with hundreds of children hailing from some of the topmost national and international schools in Bangalore. The result of that was the production and performance of ‘Passionate guardians of nature’ that was presented at the UB city.


Starting at tea time, groups of children were taken to every nook and corner of UB city by their team heads who were dancers from the Natya institute. Dancers Janardhan Raj Urs, Sonia Ponnamma Devaiah, Ramya Nagaraj, Keerthi Kumar, Roopa Murthy, Nikhil Parmar and others patiently conducted workshops in dance and movement with their respective groups of children. It all culminated in a grand presentation of the production titled ‘Passionate guardians of nature’ with a theme to conserve and protect our environment and go green: a theme apt for India’s garden city!

The chief guests for the event, Bangalore’s favorite restaurateur and reputed theatre person and yoga guru Prem Koshy and noted Bharatanatyam dancer and actress Lakshmi Gopalaswamy were overwhelmed to see thousands of children perform like absolute professionals on a small make-shift stage that was set up at the last minute inside the UB city. As a thousand shutterbugs flashed across the packed staircase, groups of enthusiastic children performed their respective roles effortlessly.

Children from some of Bangalore’s most prominent schools like the Delhi Public School, Bangalore International school, Vidyashilp Academy, Mallya Aditi International School, Venkat International Public School, Sindhi High School, Sri Vani School, Drishya School run by eminent educationist Geeta Narayan for underprivileged children, Carmel High School, Presidency School, Kensri School, Frank Anthony Public School, St. Joseph’s boys school, Little Angels Public School, Bishop Cottons school, Baldwin Girls High School, National Public School and many others participated in full attendance. As one parent said, “I haven’t seen children this excited even to go to their school as much as I’ve seen them come and take ownership of this dance festival.”

 As teachers and principals of these schools sat awestruck at the performance of their respective children, a silent prayer went into the air that here were the future dancers and dance-enthusiasts of our country, safely being nurtured and cultured into the art form with ample patience. One never knows how many Balasaraswatis or Birju Maharajs will emerge from these thousands who participated. Kudos to Namma Dance Utsav for pulling off this staggering event!

The chief guests gave away certificates of participation to each and every kid patiently as the second day of the festival concluded with high energy and fervor.

Veejay Sai is a writer, editor and a culture critic.