Read our interview with young and dynamic dancer, Krupa Shah as she discusses growing up in the dance world, and the whirlwind of classes, schools and performances that have come together to make her dreams come true. The interview is open, honest and truthful. A true look at her life.
Tell us something about yourself, your personal life, and educational background.
“I’ve always had a keen interest in dance, sports, music and Biology (yes, really!). Since I was 4, I have spent most of my time pursuing one or all of them. On the dance front, I have been learning Bharatnatyam for the last 18 years and was also a part of the Shiamak Davar Institute for the Performing Arts for 10 years. My education at the Good Shepherd International School, Ooty taught me to be independent and focused at a very young age. Thereon, I have been extremely lucky to be a part of some of the best institutions in the world. Mount Carmel College, Bangalore, Narsee Monjee College of Commerce and Economics, Mumbai, for my under graduation, Harvard University, Boston, for Summer School, Manchester Business School, U.K for an MSc in Management and eventually Broadway Dance Centre, New York wherein I graduated in dance. Also, I’m a big foodie and I love to travel. A few places already covered from my bucket list are Barcelona, Ibiza, Venice, Milan, Amsterdam, Dubai and London. Many more to go!
What exactly do you do?
Currently I am a teacher to 22 lovely students ranging from the age group of 3 to 53 years who have reached out to me in the past 12 months which was when I first started teaching dance professionally. I am involved only in private dance lessons, allowing me to limit my batch size to maximum 5 students per batch. That way I am able to give individual attention to every student, thus reflecting widely in his or her quality of dancing. Alongside, I myself started learning Kathak about 6 months back and still continue to give Bharatnatyam performances around the country.
In addition to all this, I also help in my family business and usually work and handle the Business Development portfolio.
Why something like this? I mean in today’s time, we know how many people are into following the traditional trend. Weren’t you scared? What if you had failed with this? Had any back up plans?
Many people told me (and still continue to persuade me) to start my own dance school or enter Bollywood and become a choreographer, but somewhere deep inside I just know that it’s not meant for me (at least not right now). What I do today is only because of the love and passion I have for dance. Not as a source of my bread and butter. It gives me immense happiness and pride to see my students perform on stage or even in class because I know they are thoroughly enjoying themselves and to see that is extremely satisfying and fulfilling. The smile it brings on a student’s face is irreplaceable. And yes, of course I was scared. I didn’t know if I would be accepted, if people would like my teaching style or my choreography. But from the day I started, I haven’t had a single student who has discontinued my class. The number has been steadily increasing and I couldn’t be happier! As for the back up plan, since I wasn’t doing it for financial reasons the thought of failing never occurred to me. If not this, I would’ve looked for another way to spread the joy of dance!
How did the idea of this come to you?
I had been involved with dance for 20 years when I decided to start teaching professionally. I felt that it was time to impart and spread the knowledge I had gained from all the different avenues, which I was truly blessed to be a part of. I also saw the need for the same, in the manner that I do. Most of the dance classes you will see today are filled with so many students making it impossible for the instructor to give his or her personal attention to the students. I know this because I have been one of those students throughout my training. In my opinion, that hinders growth. I just knew that if and whenever I would teach, my approach, as a teacher and towards my students, would be totally different.
When did you decide to give it a start? And how?
I knew I wanted people to be involved in dance for one or more reasons. Not only for learning but also for the fun element – to let go, to enjoy, to have some me-time and most importantly to discipline one’s body. Dance is a fantastic way to exercise and improve flexibility. It teaches you so much about your own body. It can also get challenging at times and that’s when it is really productive. To help people overcome something like that and all the other things I mentioned is why I started doing this.
Do you get nervous before a performance? What advice would you give to beginners who are nervous?
Yes and no. Yes because I want everything to go smoothly. Right from the choreography, to the audio, to the lighting and many other such elements which put together an entire performance. And no because I am confident of my learning and the hours of practice that I have put in along with the trust and belief of my teachers instilled in me. Being nervous is absolutely normal and it does not mean that there’s a reason to worry or get intimidated. However, I would advice others to not let this nervousness over power the level of preparation they have built for the performance. It all lies in the mindset just minutes before the performance starts. Be confident and believe in yourself. Just that, does wonders!
Anything that you want people who are into this line to keep in mind for success?
Try to innovate and be different. Don’t follow somebody else’s footprints just because they are successful. Make your own footprints. Make your own mistakes. Be perseverant. I am not trying to be philosophical but the things you learn this way will teach you something no other experience will. And most importantly, amidst all of this, don’t forget that you are blessed and talented for a reason. Put that potential to good use and always put your heart and soul into whatever you do.
These Musicians Soulful Composition Is Beating Virus Blues
The three musketeers are back, and this time with beats and notes full of hopes and positivity. After all, this is what we need in this grave situation.
Srinath, Sameel, and Debarpan of Green Room Tapes have shared their experience and journey of music and upcoming song.
Mygov.in- A citizen engagement platform of Government, approached green room tapes, to share their work on the website. With the kick and encouragement of this initiative by the Government, they decided to create their own composition and a music video at their respective homes. As it might seem, it was more than challenging for these guys to do it individually from their homes while one of the guys is in the US.
They were skeptical as a lot of technical aspects can hinder the quality of the song, especially when they have very little set up at home.
They did face a lot of hurdles in the making of the song. However, nevertheless, on April 17, they released ‘Ghangor Ghata,’ a beautiful melody composed by them where each word and beats in the song resembles optimism. Happy with the work, the Government has also released the song on their social media platforms.
S5|E6: The Green Room Tapes Collective, a collaboration forum of musicians, reminds all citizens to stay home and stay positive with their new original song, 'Ghanghor Ghata’ recorded and produced from their respective homes during the lockdown period. #PositiveHarmonies pic.twitter.com/RTMOyBy0VM
— MyGovIndia (@mygovindia) April 21, 2020
Debarpan wrote the song in just a day. Words are simple, understandable, yet effective. With Liboy Praisly as the lead guitarist of the song and Sameel on the tabla, the song truly became a wholesome. On asked upon their motive behind the song, they explained how the current COVID-19 situation impacts everyone. Loneliness and depression has become a common state of mind because of the inability to spend the day as usual. So they came up with an idea to do this specifically to fight back the present situation.
One of the guys said, “Not just lighting candles but lighting the hope in our mind and heart is more important.” Music can soothe any mind; this song and their music does the job very well.
The musicians also shared the short story behind the name green room tapes, when they started with their journey they recorded the songs in a room painted in green which belongs to Srinath. Slowly the guys got recognized with their music, and it was a green room. This idea of green room made more sense because an artists share their most inevitable moments right before their performance in the green room.
These musicians have performed live in various cities. You can enjoy some of their best songs on their channel. They are about to reach a million views in a concise span of time.
In the upcoming months, they are going to upload a lot of soulful music. All we need to do is sit back and enjoy.
These musicians have sent the message to all their listeners,” Stay home and stop the spread of the virus. We all can fight it together. Let the art inside you bloom.”
We at News Aur Chai believe it too.
Passion Is A Misused Term For The Sake Of Drama – Aditya Kambhampati
While surfing through Youtube this track came up “Tukda”, the name itself was ‘hatke’. After listening to the song I realised, it is something that every person goes through. In the hustle and bustle of life, we forget to enjoy our life itself. So let me introduce you to Aditya Kambhampati, the person behind the beautiful track of ‘Tukda’. Let’s have a look at what he has to say about ‘Tukda’ and his passion for life.
1. Can you give a brief about yourself?
This is almost like a cool version of a job interview. Reminds me of the days I sat for campus placements.
Aditya is just your guy-next-door, a regular Bombay guy, who loves eating all sorts of foods, hanging out with friends, have a couple of drinks at times and yeah also likes music. So, music and football have been the two main driving factors in my life since childhood.
Unfortunately, I can’t pursue football as a practical career option, so I’m trying my hand in music.
2. Tell us about your new song. What is ‘Tukda’ all about?
‘Tukda’ is actually a piece of your life — a piece of your world. You obviously can’t have the world, so relishing the piece in your hand is what tukda is all about.
The inspiration is clearly from my life experiences. I see and hear many people saying I hate my job, and I want to quit my job, wow you’re so lucky you have something to fall back upon, you can follow your passion and what not–what hit me is that they never realise where they are and what it truly means. To be very honest ‘Tukda’ is about being grateful for what you have in life and still try to thrive for more. I am very grateful to my days in the corporate bank job, and I have no shame in admitting it. So that’s it.
Motive, as I said, it’s just to talk about how relevant the world around you is, and one should always relish it. People spend a lifetime cursing their lives.
Very clearly, I didn’t want to disrespect the corporate desk job or the working-class. I have immense respect for the people who work hard to earn a living and support their loved ones. So the message was to take a break, get away from the grind and peep into your soul. That’s all.
3. Passionate about music, then why still in corporate life?
That’s a tough one — I don’t know for sure, but as of now, I think I am still learning both sides. I’m still working on my musical skills. Also, as of now, I am able to maintain a balance between both the worlds and trust me; it’s not that difficult. The avenues in music for me as of now are limited, so I am working in a bank. The bank job helps me to be on my toes and helps me to be disciplined. No matter how many open mics I’ve attended, no matter how long I’ve been working on a song and mixing it in the night, I have to wake up at 6.30 and hit the office at 9. I think that helps. Plus it gives me a lot of content and inspiration to go back home and work on songs. Besides, the bank job helps me pay my bills for sure as of now.
4. I have noticed an odd alarm time in the song, why so?
It wasn’t planned. I wasn’t even there when we were shooting the indoor parts of the video. However, yeah my alarm also is set on some random time and it snoozes that’s why I guess it’s odd–I can’t say for sure.
5. How is this song related to you?
If you have noticed, the guy in the video (Ayaz Merchant) is doing many things, which I usually do every day. Moreover, as I’ve already said it comes straight from my life.
6. In the song, you are missing someone. Are you really missing someone?
No, I don’t think so. I am a pretty content soul as of now, touchwood. The only thing I miss is, maybe some good sleep. I should really be getting more hours of sleep regularly.
7. Why are shoot locations essential for any song?
To make it clear, everybody need not go to scenic landscapes to shoot their songs. It’s just that while composing this one, I always had a road trip in my head and hence we went to Tahmini ghats and shot it. It was one hell of a ride. We woke up at 5 in the morning and literally shot it the whole day till we felt we had enough footage material to edit. Lal the director of the song, I’m sure is still not happy because he didn’t get a few shots in daylight. However, you can’t have it all. I think the output turned out to be pretty decent.
8. Why Indie song?
In the past couple of years, I’ve heard many Indie artists, and after listening to them, I felt wow this is something I want to try. I think Indie gives you that extra bit of a room to experiment and to be imperfect, which is incredible. Also, to be honest, no music label has approached me. Being Indie is also an attempt to reach out to the world and help them have access to my stuff which is really good. Indie is empowering in many ways.
9. Will you go for a Passion driven life?
Yeah yeah of course! I don’t see a reason why somebody wouldn’t. However, again depends on what is one’s idea of passion? Passion, I think, is a misused term for the sake of drama and always associated with arts and sports. Also, the term passion is too romanticised. People can be really passionate about anything, and they don’t need to pursue it as a career option necessarily. The most important thing is, to be honest to it and keep in touch with it every now and then.
10. How do you manage work-life with music?
As I said, it’s not as hard as people make it sound. My work at the office ends at 7. I literally have at least 6 hours before I sleep. I use it to perform at open mics and get feedback on my songs or spend time alone composing, playing around with notes, figuring out what works what doesn’t and maybe program a track on my laptop. It’s enjoyable and consumes a lot of me and helps me sleep well in the night. It’s all about having a good night sleep in the end, you know.
11. If given a choice to pick between music and job, what you will choose, and why?
My goal is to make a living out of music and performing arts. I’ve been very clear about it, and I will do whatever I can in my capacity to achieve it. However, I need to be calculative and not go all out.
12. Music is life, true or false? If true, then what is a job?
That’s subjective. For a musician who pursues it professionally, it may be life. For someone who doesn’t, it’s just a good source of entertainment. Moreover, then there are few who appreciate art and are passionate about it but as listeners or somebody who has a life besides it. For me, I grew up listening to music and singing songs and want to have a life doing original songs; eventually, I could as well say music is an essential part of my life.
13. Any suggestion for our readers, who wants to pursue their goal, how and what can they do?
I don’t think I would be the ideal person to be telling someone what to do with their lives, but all I can say is be honest and invest time in doing what you like. However, also smartly detach yourself from it as and when needed. You can’t be obsessed about something, especially your own craft. That’s a curse if you ask me. Once you’re done with something, you should get going. Detaching helps you make your essence sharper and fresher.
14. Lastly, the real reason for anyone to listen to your song.
To get chill feels. The song is also like a warm hug, and frankly, it would work in many setups, like – house parties, long drives, holidays, alone time late in the night and more. It’s also not too loud, so yeah it makes for a decent listen especially amongst all the hustle in the outside world. I won’t get into the technicalities and lyrics part of if because that’s subjective and I want people to have their own interpretations because it’s their song and not mine anymore. So I don’t want to lead them into something; they can have their own stories about the song and I would love to hear them.
Catch more such interviews on #LiteNote follow NewsAurChai
A Candid Conversation With Priya Pereira
Her cheerful smile, balletic dance movements and terrific acting have garnered love and admiration from people across India. Her notable performance in Kannada romance-drama movie — Chandra Chakori — became her major breakthrough into stardom. Woman with many feathers Priya Pereira in an exclusive interview with News Aur Chai takes us through her ups and downs and how she is sailing through this bumpy ride called — life.
1. How you ascertained that dancing and acting were not mere hobbies but more than that?
I was always drawn to the performing arts, mainly dancing and acting. I was about 11-year-old when I realised and knew that this is where my heart belongs. However, I took it seriously only after my Post Graduation, when I finally mustered the courage to tell my parents that I wanted to pursue acting professionally.
2. Acting or dancing. What is more, liberating?
Both, in their own ways, can be physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually liberating. It’s what I love about performing. It’s like a little world to get lost in.
3. How you define success, and what is your success mantra?
Success for me is being happy. My mantra is ‘Do what you love and love what you do’. There’s a whole list of things, small and big that I’d like to achieve. Ticking things off that list makes me happy.
4. The biggest challenge of your industry?
Of any industry, the biggest challenge is listening to your heart or gut. Believing in yourself and making the choice that you believe is the most apt for you. ‘Mostly the challenge is within one’s self rather than outside.’
5. When did you feel low in your career and how you dealt with it?
Feeling low can constantly happen; it comes and goes. It’s ok to withdraw and sulk for some time, but you must go on. I’m so passionate about my job that I always get up and push harder every day.
I also believe that one should be open about one’s feelings to close friends and family and seek support whenever needed.
6. What keeps you motivated and what’s the accessory that one needs to wear to keep moving in the industry?
The desire to be loved by people for the work I do and the hunger to get better each day is my motivation. Passion and perseverance, in my opinion, are essential to keep going.
7. That one criticism that you embraced, and it changed your life?
Criticism is tricky! It shakes me up sometimes, makes me question myself sometimes, makes me laugh sometimes… but I’ve learnt with time that criticism is a person’s point of view (as is a compliment). It’s best to stay detached from both and do what you think is right.
8. Go with the draft plan or go with the flow. Which is Priya’s way?
I think I’m more of a ‘go with the flow’ type of person… with maybe a small ‘draft’ sketched up here and there. So a delicate combination of the two, ideally.
9. Why did you decide to try your hands in entrepreneurship?
PRI’S organic peanut butter happened to me by chance. Once upon a time, Priya made some peanut butter at home, and everyone loved it. Soon she sold some jars at a friend’s charity sale, and they all sold out! She then decided to take it further by starting a brand of her own. It’s been almost five years, and there’s been no looking back!
10. Your message for the dreamers?
Listen to that little voice inside you. You will always know what you want to do. Always keep looking for it – that thing that you know you MUST have or do, that thing that will help you become YOU.
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