That’s the way, Malvika Ve!’
“I’m not worried about making mistakes, or being as good as anyone else. I’m just there because I love to dance.”
Malvika, a physiotherapist working in age care, is also a die-hard lover of Bollywood and one of our regular students. Earlier this year I watched her dancing in Belly-Bolly, and I was struck by her playfulness and confidence. We talk with Malvika about how her dancing persona has transformed over time.
Bollywood Senior Superstars!
“I have no doubt that Josh, Jaya and Studio J are my healing source. I absolutely know I would not be where I am without you all.”
Two of our wonderful Senior students had surgery recently. Both have recovered remarkably well. Read on to hear how their Bollywood dance classes helped them with their fantastic recovery!
Beyond StudioJ – Anagha
“I really believe in the law of attraction and manifesting what you want. I applied to Coles eighty-four times & was rejected. Then one day, I got the job.”
Always ready with a smile and a helping hand, Anagha sparkles with positivity. Starting off as a teacher, and then coming on board as our technical assistant during COVID, she has been the perfect addition to our Studio J fam.
“Do you earn enough from dance?” A question I hear all the time.
But this question raises another – what is ‘enough’?
Am I the worst in class?
When I opened Studio J a few months ago, the question I got asked the most from new students was “I’ve never danced before, is your class ok for beginners?” And behind that question was the unspoken fear – “Will I be the worst in class?”
An Interview with Jaya Karan
Founder of Studio J, Director of Sapphire Dance, Jaya also has an alternate career as a physiotherapist. We speak with Jaya about how Studio J came to life and how she balances being a dancerpreneur with family life.
Studio J turns 4!
On our 4th bday, we look back through the eyes of our very first student – Saachi!! Saachi enrolled when we opened on 24 Oct 2016. 4 years on, she continues to dance with her Studio J fam. “What can I say, I’m very loyal!” (laughs heartily).
World Mental Health Day
This year has been tough. We talked to our dance family to see how they’ve been looking after their mental health during lockdown. Read on see what some of them have shared with us.
Beyond StudioJ – Joshinder
“I want to earn money doing something enjoyable, I want to feel connected to people, I want to be healthy. Because what is life without any of these things?”
From Nigeria to Melbourne to Pakistan & back, Joshinder has never chosen the conventional path in life. The inspiring journey of our lovable, brave and free-spirited artist and studio manager, Joshinder Chaggar.
Coffee with ida
From a huge online fan base to sold out dance classes, plus the glamour of performing with Sapphire Dance…one would think life is a bed of roses for Ida Ghatge. But as the saying goes, everyone has a story! Equally passionate about dance and mental health, find out about our Bolly-Kathak queen’s journey.
Maret – Our Bollywood Superstar
Everyone knows that we love sharing our student journeys, and we’re certainly not going to let a virus change that. Social-distancing and isolation – but still connecting, sharing stories and celebrating life!
Are You Good Enough?
The amazing life journey of Natsuko Mineghishi, our Bolly-Heels student.
When Natusko dropped out of science-engineering to pursue studies in classical opera singing, her family repeatedly asked her, “Are you sure you’re good enough?”
Coffee with Govind
“I think it’s amazing what people can do for themselves when they love something.”
Studio J talks to Govind about family, tradition, dance and the many layers that make up this gorgeous human being.
Beyond StudioJ – Laki
“Being the only girl in a guy’s team, I don’t want to be seen as the weak link. I want to be the strongest. If I’m not tired at the end of the day, then I haven’t put in enough.”
Founder of Bharatanatyam dance school, Natya Praana, co-founder of Ranjhe Bhangra, and co-owner of LAKS Dance Crew, Laki is a force to be reckoned with.
Dance Travel = Tolerance
“Dance is such a great introduction to another culture. It’s like learning a foreign language.”
Dance + Travel = Tolerance…As most of our students are discovering – it’s a winning formula!
What Excuse for Happiness?
Why do we make excuses for not pursuing something we love? Or let go of a childhood passion?
Dance Classes, Deep Conversations
Dance classes lead to deep conversations! Sharing some great little insight from a student recently.
We just love getting to know our students and featuring their awesome journeys. We are always surprised and humbled by their honesty and willingness to share their life stories with us. Read on to discover Kanika copy’s dance journey!
Coffee with Pragya
“Sensual, feminine, soulful.” Our Belly-Bolly classes have thrived since Pragya Khare joined the team. Studio J talks to this woman who exudes effortless grace and beauty.
Fathers Dance Too
Children learn from what we do, not what we say. I admire the dedication of the modern father, ferrying his kids to soccer, piano, karate and tennis; but it makes me sad to hear in conversation that the same father has given up his own activities of youth. Why give up on learning and discovering new things to love?
Five Ways to Find Time for Dance
“How do you find time for dance?” is a question I am often asked. Withfamily, kids and work commitments, I’ve had to find somecreative ways to fit dance into my schedule. Here are a few things that have worked for me over the years – hopefully you find a few of these helpful for you too!
Dance – Are my ‘best years’ over?
A couple of years ago, my Bharatanatyam teacher became frustrated with some of the younger students in my class. He felt that they weren’t pushing themselves to their full potential. He looked at me (since I was the oldest in the class) and said – “Tell them! This is the best years of their life!” I stayed quiet, because I didn’t agree.
Make Dance Not War
The delicious diversity of multicultural Melbourne has organically shaped many of our fusion classes. One of our most popular classes, Bolly-Heels, is a classic example of East meets West.
Dance and Depression
To be honest, I sometimes feel a panic attack creeping up on my way to class. But once I enter the studio, everything shifts. That hour and a half is an exhilarating experience.
The ‘Thumka’ Effect
Recently, while introducing a beginner class to the magic of the ‘Thumka’, (my all-time favourite Bollywood move – the hip shake), I stumbled upon a shocking social conditioning.
Chasing a Dream
I find it odd when people assume that I’ve ‘sacrificed’ things to get to where I am. The term sacrifice implies that I’ve given up something I love.
Studio J – 2018 Highlights!
A community of like-minded individuals, who enjoy doing things a little differently and adding creativity to their everyday lives. Here are a few highlights from the year that was 2018:
The Dance of Life
I know many people, myself included, who have been caught up in starting and stopping, waiting and anxiety, impatience and disappointment, caught up in rushing to build a career.
It’s More Than Dance
With dance, I began to notice a shift in my confidence – I was becoming braver at expressing myself, not only on but also off the dance floor.
An Inclusive Space – Anya’s Story
“Coming back to Bharatanatyam, I felt like an outsider and that there was no space for people who don’t fit a certain mould.”
‘Old’ has become old
“All it takes to live a creative life, says Eileen Kramer, is to follow your desire.
Its just that most people don’t.
Just Move Your Body Darling
My first reaction at seeing this beautiful Sri Lankan woman was, “You don’t look seventy-two!” She laughed and said, “Dance keeps me young darling.”
An interview with Parvyn Kaur Singh
An accomplished singer and dancer, Parvyn has a thriving career in multiple projects including fronting the cult band The Bombay Royale. She’s also mother to one year old Ravi. We speak with Parvyn about motherhood, juggling family and career.
Beyond StudioJ – Rashan
“It has happened that when students come to my class, and they realize I am Muslim, they don’t sign up. I tell them, if you are looking for a good teacher, then come to me. If you are after religion, then please don’t come.”
Born to be a dancer & a warrior at heart, our Kandyan hero’s story is nothing short of a film story, filled with resilience, passion and survival! Read on to discover Rashan’s incredible journey.
It turns out that Rose has a lot of ‘stuff’. She tells us of how one day the inside of her foot crumbled due to mild osteoporosis. And that her husband has just been diagnosed with a serious auto-immune disease.
How to Live Stream Your Class
In 5 Easy Steps!
This is based on OUR experience so far! Not the only way, but it worked for us quickly and achieved a good quality!
The Bhangra Evolution
Ever listened to Bhangra music? It’s a challenge to keep yourself still. The infectious rhythm of the dhol crosses all cultures, ages and backgrounds. It’s a diverse style which can be blended with many different genres. Add Bhangra to anything and it’s instantly better.
A second home
Anusha, a regular student in our Bharatanatyam class, recently enrolled in the South Indian Street course with her husband (Hari) and her nine-year old daughter (Ish). This beautiful family completed the full term in March 2021. Read on to see how it transformed their week.