Online tools are proving to be saving grace for the people badly hit by the Coronavirus pandemic. With everyone stays indoors the only way to be in touch with the outer world is mobiles, laptops and people are using them to its maximum.
2020 is a tough year for everyone as Covid 19 which is taking it’s toll on everything. However people turn their attention on to online mediums for getting in touch with their loved ones and also to spread some positivity in such difficult times.
Dr Guru Sharad Pandya a classical dance exponent and founder and director Purva school of Bharatanatyam, Vadodara is doing the same thing with the best ever medium called dance. He says that, It is important that we look at the bright side or atleast try to stay calm, poised and at least positive to be able to handle the situation in the best possible way.
It is important to manage these times by looking out at only what is there with us and remains with us rather than looking at what we don’t have or won’t have. Dr Pandya says, immunity is the priority and more than wealth it is important that we have good health and continue to do our work in the best possible way by either being at home or by moving outdoors only when utmost essential. In this belief he tried to look out at what he has and what he can do to be mentally and physically fit and boost immunity by staying indoors.
He believes that Classical dance, like Ayurveda, yoga and painting has lot of positives and in-depth valuable effects and impact. He says that Classical dance practice of just the basics will also help for good blood circulation, breathing and exercise to major and minor limbs, if training under an experienced guru is taken up.
He felt that Classical dance practice balances the right and the left and so, the focus is undivided and in distracted which helps in creating positive mental attitude. Sweating removes toxins and helps us purify our blood and give health to our heart and lungs. He is sure that Classical dance helps comes out of stress, anxiety, back pain, nape and neck pain as well as leg cramps, if being taught by a classical dance guru who is experienced.
Dr. Guru Sharad Pandya’s life has been full of teaching, training and performing classical dance and also quite globe trotting for the same. He has visited and represented several countries such as Laos, Kampuchea, Vietnam, Philippines, Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand, U.S.S.R, Serbia, Mauritius, Sri Lanka and including very recently at Brazil and USA in December and early January. Since the past 40 years, he is devoted to classical dance.
Since the start of pandemic, his approach has only been to be indoors and help others by inspiring them with understanding how mental and physical health can also be achieved by staying indoors and practicing classical dance, even if one is not a professional classical dance.
Few of the things that he has achieved online:
He stopped the in person classes, as early in March last week. He started training students, one on one online. He also has a dentist, a surgeon, an HR, a financial analyst, a teacher and even a lecturer continuing online classes, apart from students who are still studying at school and college level programs.
He has been teaching through online classes Bharatanatyam to students from Brazil, USA and Canada also. As well as Australia. He is teaching students online Bharatanatyam for students from Vadodara, Halol and Ahmedabad as well as Jalgaon and Bangalore.
Apart from regular training classes of Bharatanatyam online, he achieved creating an online platform for celebration of world dance day, which is celebrated around the world on April 29th. He hosted an online classical dance festival and his students from Vadodara, Ahmedabad, Halol, Toronto, Vancouver, L.A, San Jose, New York, New Jersey, Raleigh also perform online and many viewers could enjoy witnessing the beautiful and greatness of classical dance by staying at home and logging online. This was very well received and highly appreciated. There were close to 3000 views for this effort.
Along with online classes and online festival, he also spoke about importance of classical dance in a one hour online interview which inspired several people if different age group. This was later shared on social media platforms and YouTube channel. He also demonstrated classical dance movements in this.
Very recently, he conducted an online, interactive question and answer session, which was live at the same time on multiple social media platforms and he choose a time where several people from different parts of the world could witness it and join it online.
Some of the interesting online questions that he received and could answer, included:
How can classical dance help for mental health and boost confidence? How to do classical dance after surgery? How to do classical dance when you have breathing through nose issue? How do restart classical dance after a long break or gap? How to do classical dance only for fitness and not as profession? How to manage learning classical dance online and is it advisable? How to do Bharatanatyam when you have thyroid issues? And how can classical dance training help if you are not present in person to your guru?
He is glad that these questions came to him and he could answer this live, like a dance fitness helpline per se. And he is going to address these online every 2 weeks once.
He was invited by Abhivyakti trust to conduct online webinar to speak about Abhinaya darpana and it’s relation to the present context. This webinar was also very impactful and the participants needed this change from their routine activities especially when they are in the lockdown, at home. They could get time to spend for knowledge and enlightenment. For this he had participants from different parts of India and even Brazil.
He was also invited to be an online chief guest of a classical dance program, which was panned before the lockdown, but could not take place in auditorium due to social distancing norms. With technology pocket and the world in our hands, we should use it positively and for the better outcomes. He attend the program online as a chief guest and could give my key note address and critical remarks through online platform.
In coming days, he is invited to conduct an online classical dance workshop for students from Ahmedabad and this is for non classical dancers and mothers. He is looking forward to make an impact and create awareness through my art.
A similar workshop for the end of July is planned for dancers from Bangalore and he is looking forward to creat more enthusiasm and positivity through his art to the young and curious minds and the mothers, who have been the most stressed, off late.
He says on the note that classical dance sessions and programs have helped him to stay in touch with his students, their families and in touch with his art and practice. It also helped him stay positive and engaged with quality.
This also has created positive impact on his students and their families, even while they are geographically and socially away from him. This is the new normal, let us look at the bright side and continue our work and our practice of classical dance. It is essential for the young and the elderly. Age is no bar. It is open for even non classical dancers. Anyone, who is looking out for workout from home for mental and physical health, can join classical dance sessions, says Dr. Guru Sharad Pandya