My daughter loves to dance and move to music and was very interested when she saw her cousins doing their bollywood dance routines. I've found a bunch of Indian dance classes for children in the South Bay, but I can't find anything in the Oakland or Berkeley area. My daughter is half Indian and we think this would be a good way to not only expose her to a new type of dance and movement, but also to introduce her to another aspect of her heritage and culture. We're looking for a group dance class, not one on one dance instruction. Any ideas or suggestions? Thanks, damian
Hi Damian, I saw your post about Bollywood style dance classes in the Berkeley/Oakland area. I've been doing a similar search as we recently moved to the area and also have a half Indian daughter who wants to do Indian dance (as well as a full Indian daughter who wants to do non-Indian dance . We're interested in folk dancing and possibly classical, if she tries it and likes it. In my searches, I've found the Kalanjali School of Dance in Berkeley which I hope to call this week so here's the number if you'd like to try as well: (510) 526-2183. Also, I read that the YWCA of Berkeley/Oakland has Bollywood classes. Anyway, feel free to email me and maybe we can locate some good classes in the area. Monika
You should try Chhandam school of Kathak. They are fantastic and they have a branch in Berkeley that my daughter has attended for the past 2 years. She loves the teachers, the dance, the school and the community. There are kids (girls and boys!) from all backgrounds and they teach you dance but also singing, rythm, math, philosophy and they really help the kids of indian descent connect to their heritage. I believe classes start at age 4 but you can always email them/ talk to the teachers. www.kathak.org look on the Chhandam school tab. Sylvie
I too have a daughter who is 1/2 Indian and my Indian side of the family told me that they took kids classes at Ashkenaz in Berkeley: http://www.ashkenaz.com/html/classes.html. It looks like you will have to call for more detailed info. to see if they presently offer classes to kids. Good luck..... anon
I have a 4 year old girl who loves to dance, but doesn't like to perform. We are looking for an Indian/ Bollywood style class in the Berkeley/Albany/El Cerrito area. Any recommendations? Stacey
My daughter has loved Danceversity - very Bollywood and other Middle Eastern influenced dances. She has done it now for several years and started with Hannah, who runs the program, in the summer camp program. I'm not sure if they start as young as four, but do have young kids (boys and girls but mostly popular with girls). The camps we have done have been at Ashkenaz.
Hannah is (and her other dance instructors are) tremendous with the kids, very encouraging and welcoming. She has terrific props - scarves and sparkly costumes that capture the spirit. For the camps there is a final performance, most kids want to do it but Hannah is very accommodating.
All abilities and body types are truly welcome. My daughter has been doing this a number of years. Now she is hovering around puberty - I can't imagine a more elegant and affirming program to be part of through a sensitive phase. Check out www.danceversity.com. Have fun! Megan