Kids’ Class: 5:30 – 6:20 pm
Adults’ Class: 6:30 – 7:30 pm
Bollywood (Bombay + Hollywood) is India’s—and the world’s—largest entertainment industry. Most Bollywood movies are musicals made up of elaborate dance sequences and original songs. Over the years, Bollywood films have developed their own style of song and dance, which derive from a Western influence on India’s many classical and folk styles. For example, it is not uncommon to find a fusion of Western forms of movement, like hip-hop, and classical Indian dance in a Bollywood routine.
Classes will begin with light stretching and a brief background and history of the song choice for the day. Since all Bollywood dance songs are essentially a story and our dance is in the form of storytelling, we will be focusing on using our body as words and our facial expressions to help illuminate these words.
Please come dressed in comfortable clothing (sweatpants/tights and T-shirts). I prefer to dance barefoot and you all are welcome to join me. If you prefer to wear shoes, please wear sneakers or tennis shoes. Don’t forget a bottle of water and your high energy!
Anisha is certain she was dancing before she learned how to walk. After an early introduction to Bollywood movies, Anisha began performing on stage to her favorite Bollywood songs by age 4. Around the same time, she was introduced to Garba, a traditional folk dance from Gujarat, India. Her obsession with all things filmi music and folkloric dance grew over the years. From ages 5-18, Anisha participated in numerous performances ranging from those at dance competitions to weddings. In her freshman year at the University of Florida, Anisha made the Gator Garba team, which placed first at the state collegiate competition. She was chosen as the team’s choreographer in her sophomore year, helping the team to bring home another state trophy.
Dance still plays a crucial part of Anisha’s life. By day, she works at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, but by night, you may find her either teaching a Bollywood dance class to her coworkers or learning a new form of dance from a range of studios in DC. Anisha believes that a good dancer is forever a student and that there is constant room for growth, whether it be from other forms of movement or her own students. She makes it a point to express that dance should always be inclusive—greeting all of her students with open arms and positive energy.
Mondays at 6:45 – 8:00 pm
Recognized for her sincere dedication to learning and teaching, Marta offers weekly classes, workshops and private sessions in the D.C. area.
Marta approaches teaching from a holistic perspective, emphasizing technique, stylization, and musical interpretation while helping students understand how each movement initiates, feels and flows through their individual bodies. With a clear historical and cultural foundation, she invites more advanced students to fuse their own creativity, where appropriate, allowing for the exploration of each one’s unique voice.
Through her own independent studies and her certified doula/labor assistant work (ALACE & The Farm Midwives), Marta brings knowledge of women’s health into her teaching; currently working to finish a curriculum that incorporates childbirth education and dance for mothers-to-be. Lastly, Marta is committed to using dance and other forms of creative movement in her work with under-resourced communities (in the U.S. and Latin America) to support engagement, healing, leadership, community building and skills development among women, teens and girls. To this end, she actively volunteered for over 3 years at the Sitar Center for the Arts as well as BloomBars and has completed several community based initiatives including a month-long dance project in Lima, Peru. She continues to provide special workshops and classes throughout the U.S., Latin America and the Caribbean.
Marta has been a faculty member at award-winning institutions including Joy of Motion Dance Center (JOM), Dance Institute of Washington (DIW), Sahara Dance (founding instructor), and the MamaSita Cultural Center (home of the Belly Dancers of Color Association). She currently conducts classes at BloomBars, Danza Jonda (Marta’s private dance studio), D.C. Public Schools, and community centers throughout the city.
“Marta’s classes are wonderful and a unique combination of elements. Her precision, empowering teaching style, integration of history and social movements into the dance class, and her emphasis on the basics as the core language from which personal interpretation follows, allows beginners and advanced dancers to enjoy the same class. Thank you for uniting the people and keeping our roots alive and in their power.” -S.L.
Wednesdays at 9:00 – 10:30 pm
Evening Samba class is back with a new day and time!
Every Wednesday night, former Carnival Queen (Sao Paulo), expert sambista and renowned instructor Iliuma Zezeh will take you on a cultural excursion thought Brazil’s Carnival. Join the party while learning lightening-fast footwork and repetitive, high-energy moves that employ the muscles hips, arms, torso and legs. It will also make your heart smile and leave you feeling loved.
All ages and genders welcome!