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Dandiya takes a cosmopolitan hue

Syeda Farida
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People from various communities to take part in ‘Dandiya utsavs’

Setting the tone:Dressed in traditional attire, women belonging to the Gujarati community dance to Dandia beats as part of the ongoing ‘Swarnim Gujarat Mahotsav’.-- Photo: Mohammed Yousuf
Setting the tone:Dressed in traditional attire, women belonging to the Gujarati community dance to Dandia beats as part of the ongoing ‘Swarnim Gujarat Mahotsav’.-- Photo: Mohammed Yousuf

Navratri celebrations are taking a multi-ethnic hue in the city. A rich mix of participants from various communities, apart from Gujaratis, are expected to participate in the ‘Dandiya utsavs’ this year too. Spacious venues from People’s Plaza to Lal Bahadur Stadium are being chosen by organisers to meet the increasing footfalls of ‘Dandiya’ and ‘Garba’ enthusiasts in the ‘Navratri Utsav’ beginning Tuesday.

“We have the Rajasthanis, Marwaris, Agrawal Samaj members, local Telugu communities and more participating in ‘Dandiya’, virtually cutting across religions and regions,” says Mak, chief organiser of Nand Kishore Vyas Bilal’s “Brindavan Vintage Navratri Dandiya Utsav” that will be organised at Malla Reddy Gardens. With a Brindavan Radha-Krishna theme and Rajasthani cuisine on offer, the event will have feature singers Amit Jadhav of X Factor and Fame Gurukul, and Veena Parasher of the Bappi Lahiri Show.

Unwinding time

“Dandiya has taken the shape of a cosmopolitan festival in Hyderabad over a period of time. People now consider it as a time to unwind with friends during the Dasara holidays,” says Suraj Singh, director, Namdhari Events, who will be organising their ‘Navratri Utsav’ at Imperial Gardens.

Mumbai’s orchestra ‘The Challengers’ will play for the have-feet-will-dance ‘Dandiya’ buffs.

This year the focus is definitely on dance unlike the emphasis on solo performances from Kamna Jethmalani and Falguni Pathak that were the highlights in previous ‘Navratri Utsavs’.

Good response to classes

“Choreographers have started ‘Dandiya’ and ‘Garba’ classes in many parts of the city this year exclusively for Navratri. They have 200-300 students in each batch all through the day,” says Mak. Several organisations such as Secunderabad Club began ‘Dandiya’ classes for their members early in October as well.

“The response has been good. We had two weeks of ‘Dandiya’ and ‘Garba’ classes that we will be wrapping up shortly. There is health benefit too that people are realising. It is like a Rumba dance session for fitness. A person can burn 700 calories in one hour of ‘Dandiya’ class,” says Ambica of Rang Manch Dance and Fitness Studio in Himayatnagar.


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