Ignite Bollywood Dance Company with the support of the City of Melbourne Covid-19 Arts Grant has created an online community arts project titled “Lockdown Bollywood Flashmob”.
During the Covid-19 pandemic, mental health has been a serious issue with an increasing number of people reaching out to helplines due to feelings of isolation, overwhelm and depression. This project aims to showcase how the Arts play an important role in bringing people together, spreading joy and helping them feel more connected to the larger community while in isolation.
Our intention was to involve a cross section of the Melbourne community to share the joy of Bollywood dancing! We wanted to make it the best possible representation of the citizens of Melbourne so we invited and encouraged people from various cultural backgrounds, religions, age, gender, sexual preferences, abilities and disabilities because Bollywood dancing is for EVERYONE! We had over 35 participants take part in this project!
For many participants it took a lot of courage, vulnerability and persistence to learn a skill they had never tried before and also to be seen by the public.
I’m Jagriti Bhatia, creator of this project, founder of Ignite Bollywood Dance Company and Ambassador for This Girl Can Victoria, and I’m so passionate about dance and movement as a means to help people connect to themselves and others.
As a small business owner and artist, I was personally impacted by Covid-19 as all my Bollywood events got cancelled resulting in zero income. I had to think creatively to survive and so I challenged myself to apply for an Arts Grant and also to take Bollywood dancing online. It’s been an up and down battle but I’m so proud of showcasing this project under the difficult conditions of a strict lockdown.
If you feel inspired to pick up a new skill and try Bollywood dancing or if you would like to bring this level of joy and connection amongst your staff, children, friends, then feel free to reach out! I’d love to help you spread joy and connection! I am confident this video will make you smile, even on the toughest of days.