Prague Diwali Dhamaka 2015 - How was it?
I was extra busy last days and that is the reason I write about Diwali celebration now, more than month later.
So how was it this year?
I have visited events organized by Bharat Sangh before (Diwali, Holi) so I had the general idea about the programme and atmosphere. This year, I invited my grandmother to join me because I though it will be a special, unusual experience for her. And it surely was! The Czech Republic is still very homogenous so it is not that common to see saree or salwar kameez in the city and it gets even stranger for older generation. So my grandmother was fascinated by those wonderful, colourful dresses all around us. We also had a nice Indian meal that was just little bit hard to manage because of lack of free places. Free and unlimited drinks (non-alcoholic) are a big advantage.
OK, I must say that I did not expect that the show/celebration will start exactly on time but more than one hour of waiting was too much even for me. It is by no means easy to organize such a big event and I do not know all reasons for the delay but still...Than, another negative note from me: sometimes the music was very loud, so loud that it was counter-productive and few times it changed my perception of the performance. I love to play loud music but this was simply too much for my ears. :D Also, I would cut some talking off since it was very long and little bit tiring, I mean talking before performances. But you can always leave the main hall to get a drink or meal or to simply rest. :) Later, it got very overcrowded so maybe next year, they can look for another place that is bigger, it is more and more popular. :)
It is always a nice chance to see new performances by various dance groups that work in the Czech Republic, or mostly in Prague. I was especially waiting to see daughter of my kathak teacher (Anežka Hessová, Ivana Hessová). I wanted to show my grandmother how beautiful kathak is but unfortunately it was the only one performance we missed because of a short meal break. :/ Another dance groups performing were for example Garam Masala, Om Dance Academy or Rasabihari.
But this year the number one for me was Shalini Don and her dance group. I´ve seen Shalini Don, a very talented young lady living in Prague, performing even before, most recently at Bollywood Prague Film Festival. But this time she was accompanied by two more dancers. They danced in three different pieces from which I loved the middle piece the most. It was called Manne Mohini Anjali and it was an Indian semi classical dance piece. Shalini´s own description of the dance: „This dance is a fusion of Bharatha Natyam and Kathak dance styles. It depicts a simple tale of a prince who is deeply drawn to the beauty of two mysterious mohinis/enchantresses and as he dances with them, he finally reveals the faces of the mohinis.“
The whole dance was like a fairy tale for me as well, beautiful music, original choreography and well-coordinated dancers. Shalini and her co-dancers are very elegant and graceful in dance, something I specially admire in dancing. Something I miss in my dancing, hehe, the way they dance with such an ease and grace like it is the most natural thing they can do. J Shalini Don runs her own dance classes in Prague so you can join them and absorb some of her dance magic, I think I will try it myself since, well, I do not have this kind of magic. :D Facebook page of Shalini Don´s dance school: https://www.facebook.com/leelasuriadanceacademyprague/
Well, we enjoyed the Diwali celebration and I am already looking forward to Holi celebration! :)
Shalini Don and her dance courses:
Manne Mohini Anjali, photo by Kathrivan