Dancer Profile: Kajal Mehta of Dhoonya Dance

Kajal Mehta is one of the owners of Bollywood inspired dance school and company Dhoonya Dance LLC and the Managing Director for the DC area business. While she has experience and training with various styles of dance such as hip hop and jazz, her expertise lies in Indian folk and Bollywood dance. For more information about Dhoonya Dance, visit their website or follow them on Twitter @dhoonya.

Kajal Mehta Dhoonya DanceWhere do you usually take class? Who is your favorite teacher in the DC area?

I don’t get to take classes too often since I teach almost every evening but have taken hip hop from Jenna Hyde who I love, and Bellydance classes from Azin Mahoozi of Born 2 Dance Studio and Saphira of Saffron Dance, who are both amazing!

How has dance changed your life? How do you feel when you’re dancing?

Dance has become who I am. It’s what I’ve been known for my entire life (well at least since the age of 15 or so!). Making the transition to being a dance instructor and Managing Director full-time is one of the biggest decisions I’ve made thus far and has an immense impact on who I will continue to be. When I dance I feel beautiful and confident…but more importantly I feel like my true self–the part of you that you are at times self-conscious about or that you hold back in other scenarios. Though Im dancing in “character” as is common in Bollywood, I still feel that when I dance it’s the “real” me. It comes from deep within.

Any advice for people who are interested in dance, but have never danced before?

Don’t overthink it. It doesn’t matter if you are good or bad–we’re not all trying to be professional dancers here! It’s about letting go—feeling the music and letting your body move in ways that it doesn’t get to move. It will be difficult the first few classes, but in time, it will all start to fall into place. If for nothing else, do it for the release!

Anything you want to promote? Anyone you want to give a shout out to?

Please join me in class as soon as you feel ready to take the next step–Dhoonya Dance offers drop in classes to anyone just looking to try it out. Bollywood dance is the best way to forget your worries and daily stresses…as we always say, “Find YOUR Inner Bollywood” today!

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About Cecile
Cecile Oreste is an arts marketing and public relations professional living in New York City. Follow her on Twitter @cecileoreste.

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