She is 15 and is already carving a niche for herself on the Classical dance platform

She took an early morning flight from Delhi to Bangalore, which was delayed by five hours! On her way to a performance, she drops in at our office for an interview after which she has to rush and get ready for her solo dance recital. Dressed in a navvy blue T-shirt and jeans, this 15-years-old dancer’s name is Prachi Hota. For a moment you are shocked at the tight schedule that she has to handle at that tender age. “But it’s not bad. I enjoy every minute of it,” says Prachi Hota, the young Odissi dancer.

Early start

She started dancing at the age of three and her parents got her into learning Odissi dance and she has “been performing since I turned four.”

Prachi started learning with Arpita Venkatesh and then later learnt from Hari Krishna Behera for eight years. Then it was Y. Asha Kumar, a student of Gangadhar Pradhan.

But strangely, it’s not dancing that she wants to pursue as a career. “I don’t think we can make enough money through classical dancing. The growth and the results take a long time. So I will study, take up a job and continue dancing as a hobby,” says the young girl. Contemporary dance on the other hand is faster and more appealing these days. The dancer focuses more on techniques in this style, where as in Odissi there is technique and emotions and mythology that you can tell stories about.”

What about studies? “Well, I try to balance dance and studies. I practise for two hours everyday and the rest of my day goes with school and study.” She plans to study Humanities or International Relations.

Prachi has participated in the Odissi International Festival in Bhubaneshwar. She dances to live music but when she has to travel, she uses recorded music because “it’s difficult to get accompanying artistes.”

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