Pressure Cooker releasing this month has Begum Bazar boy Sai Ronak in the lead. His original name is Sai Kiran but since that is a common name, he changed it to Sai Ronak for the screen. He’s no rookie; in his engineering final year, he did Patashala, Kadali and Guppedantha Prema and took a break when none of the films worked.
“I’ve been into dance and martial arts since childhood and would train people from the time I was in Intermediate. I worked with many international artistes and established Hy Dance Studio in Madhapur with a troupe of 15 trained instructors. We are coming up with two more branches,” says Sai about his dance background.
He observes “When I started the studio, dance was not considered as a profession. I explored the dance scene in Mumbai and wanted to get that professionalism to Hyderabad as well.”
Around 80% of trainees at Hy Dance are corporate peoplewho learn in different batches. Afternoons are devoted to personal training for celebrities. When he isn’t shooting, one finds him at the studio practising and upgrading with instructors.
Ask him the difference between dance instructors and choreographers and he explains that the latter have to focus on camera angles, have a grip on acting and story as well. Dance instructors focus on flexibility, body toning and dance exercises. Sai adds that Bollywood dancing is termed as free-style. "We have instructors trained in hip hop and ballet at our institute. With time I will bring a new way of dancing in the industry.”
‘Secretly, we all love to dance’
Sai Ronak recalls working in Shaimak Dawar dance group as an instructor but quit within few months as he felt there was no freedom and one had to merely follow what was a fixed form. That was when he decided to start his own dance studio. He shares, “I want people to take up dance as a regular profession. A work out in a gym can drain you but dance and music will energise you. Secretly we all love to dance but most people are embarrassed because they have no knowledge. Those who can’t move their hands and legs have become consistent students for years now. We encourage people to dance and tell them it has a purpose. Zumba is for body toning and weight loss, contemporary dance is for core-strengthening and body-balancing. It gives flexibility. With hip hop, you get control over your body, there is grace and strengthening workout. Bollywood dancing is about grace and expressions. We ask people what they are looking for and what time they want to be trained and customise a package.”
Signing off he says, “None of the films I had worked in had a dance because all of them had concept oriented plots. I will not interfere if I were to dance in a film, will leave it to the choreographer. My next film after Pressure Cooker is a story by Suresh, who’s an associate of director Jayant Kripalani."