Events + Photos: Oh My India! A Journey Around India Through Her Many Dance Traditions

A few weeks ago, my husband and I found ourselves with (awesome) seats to a dance showcase that I’ve been looking forward to for quite a while. When my good friend Thana mentioned earlier that he’s been studying traditional Indian dance and added that he will be inviting Alvin and I to their showcase – naturally – I was extremely excited. Theirs is one of the most fascinating and colourful cultures I have ever encountered so I definitely had to see this show.

India – the most populous democracy, the land of Ghandi, where the Taj Mahal is located, Bollywood land, Hinduism’s homecourt, and the birthplace of Karma and Kama Sutra. And while I’m sure the last bit totally got your attention, I have to admit that my favourites are actually these two: Indian food and their art! Indian food in Malaysia is one of the reasons (Three words: Chicken Tikka Masala) I have to go to the gym and their art forms – from visuals to performances, to wearables – always leave me in awe.

I have been bugging my friends of Indian heritage to bring me along to any of their celebrations just so I can wear a saree. That’s how eager I am. Haha!

Oh My India, was an event that highlighted 10 of the dances found in the country’s different states. It’s a great way of peeking into the culture, religion, and lore that’s so unique and captivating. The event was held in Black Box in Publika and lasted for about 2 hours which, in my opinion, went by quite fast. I actually wanted to see more! 😦

Oh My India, Indian Dance, Traditional Indian Dance, Karam, Yakshagana, Sattriya, Manipuri, Bharatnatyam, Kuchipudi, Oddisi, Kathakali, Mohiniattyam, Kathak, Black Box, Publika, Event, Dance Showcase, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, Diplomat's Wife

Oh My India, Indian Dance, Traditional Indian Dance, Karam, Yakshagana, Sattriya, Manipuri, Bharatnatyam, Kuchipudi, Oddisi, Kathakali, Mohiniattyam, Kathak, Black Box, Publika, Event, Dance Showcase, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, Diplomat's Wife

Oh My India, Indian Dance, Traditional Indian Dance, Karam, Yakshagana, Sattriya, Manipuri, Bharatnatyam, Kuchipudi, Oddisi, Kathakali, Mohiniattyam, Kathak, Black Box, Publika, Event, Dance Showcase, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, Diplomat's Wife

Ten dances were performed: Karam, Yakshagana, Sattriya, Manipuri, Bharatnatyam, Kuchipudi, Oddisi, Kathakali, Mohiniattyam, and Kathak. I’ll just let the photos do the talking, shall I? 😉

Oh My India, Indian Dance, Traditional Indian Dance, Karam, Yakshagana, Sattriya, Manipuri, Bharatnatyam, Kuchipudi, Oddisi, Kathakali, Mohiniattyam, Kathak, Black Box, Publika, Event, Dance Showcase, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, Diplomat's Wife

Oh My India, Indian Dance, Traditional Indian Dance, Karam, Yakshagana, Sattriya, Manipuri, Bharatnatyam, Kuchipudi, Oddisi, Kathakali, Mohiniattyam, Kathak, Black Box, Publika, Event, Dance Showcase, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, Diplomat's Wife

Oh My India, Indian Dance, Traditional Indian Dance, Karam, Yakshagana, Sattriya, Manipuri, Bharatnatyam, Kuchipudi, Oddisi, Kathakali, Mohiniattyam, Kathak, Black Box, Publika, Event, Dance Showcase, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, Diplomat's Wife

Oh My India, Indian Dance, Traditional Indian Dance, Karam, Yakshagana, Sattriya, Manipuri, Bharatnatyam, Kuchipudi, Oddisi, Kathakali, Mohiniattyam, Kathak, Black Box, Publika, Event, Dance Showcase, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, Diplomat's Wife

Oh My India, Indian Dance, Traditional Indian Dance, Karam, Yakshagana, Sattriya, Manipuri, Bharatnatyam, Kuchipudi, Oddisi, Kathakali, Mohiniattyam, Kathak, Black Box, Publika, Event, Dance Showcase, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, Diplomat's Wife

Oh My India, Indian Dance, Traditional Indian Dance, Karam, Yakshagana, Sattriya, Manipuri, Bharatnatyam, Kuchipudi, Oddisi, Kathakali, Mohiniattyam, Kathak, Black Box, Publika, Event, Dance Showcase, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, Diplomat's Wife

Oh My India, Indian Dance, Traditional Indian Dance, Karam, Yakshagana, Sattriya, Manipuri, Bharatnatyam, Kuchipudi, Oddisi, Kathakali, Mohiniattyam, Kathak, Black Box, Publika, Event, Dance Showcase, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, Diplomat's Wife

Oh My India, Indian Dance, Traditional Indian Dance, Karam, Yakshagana, Sattriya, Manipuri, Bharatnatyam, Kuchipudi, Oddisi, Kathakali, Mohiniattyam, Kathak, Black Box, Publika, Event, Dance Showcase, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, Diplomat's Wife

Oh My India, Indian Dance, Traditional Indian Dance, Karam, Yakshagana, Sattriya, Manipuri, Bharatnatyam, Kuchipudi, Oddisi, Kathakali, Mohiniattyam, Kathak, Black Box, Publika, Event, Dance Showcase, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, Diplomat's Wife

Oh My India, Indian Dance, Traditional Indian Dance, Karam, Yakshagana, Sattriya, Manipuri, Bharatnatyam, Kuchipudi, Oddisi, Kathakali, Mohiniattyam, Kathak, Black Box, Publika, Event, Dance Showcase, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, Diplomat's Wife

Oh My India, Indian Dance, Traditional Indian Dance, Karam, Yakshagana, Sattriya, Manipuri, Bharatnatyam, Kuchipudi, Oddisi, Kathakali, Mohiniattyam, Kathak, Black Box, Publika, Event, Dance Showcase, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, Diplomat's Wife

Oh My India, Indian Dance, Traditional Indian Dance, Karam, Yakshagana, Sattriya, Manipuri, Bharatnatyam, Kuchipudi, Oddisi, Kathakali, Mohiniattyam, Kathak, Black Box, Publika, Event, Dance Showcase, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, Diplomat's Wife

Oh My India, Indian Dance, Traditional Indian Dance, Karam, Yakshagana, Sattriya, Manipuri, Bharatnatyam, Kuchipudi, Oddisi, Kathakali, Mohiniattyam, Kathak, Black Box, Publika, Event, Dance Showcase, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, Diplomat's Wife

All dances were performed with a combination of precision and grace – from the movements down to the facial expressions. I love how each dance was preceded with a short backgrounder on it. My friend Thana was the ‘story teller’ for the show and without any bias, I can totally say that he did a great job!

Oh My India, Indian Dance, Traditional Indian Dance, Karam, Yakshagana, Sattriya, Manipuri, Bharatnatyam, Kuchipudi, Oddisi, Kathakali, Mohiniattyam, Kathak, Black Box, Publika, Event, Dance Showcase, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, Diplomat's Wife

One of the undersecretaries for Tourism attended the event (2nd row, Centre) and he was wearing a modern and a bit more casual style barong! Much to the delight of my husband and I. We had a short chat before he left and he mentioned that he recently got it from Kultura (A shop that sells Filipino handicraft and traditional wear in most of the major malls in the Philippines) during his last visit to Manila. Isn’t that nice? 😀 The barong is really a great choice for menswear. No bias in that last statement as well. 😉

Oh My India, Indian Dance, Traditional Indian Dance, Karam, Yakshagana, Sattriya, Manipuri, Bharatnatyam, Kuchipudi, Oddisi, Kathakali, Mohiniattyam, Kathak, Black Box, Publika, Event, Dance Showcase, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, Diplomat's Wife

Oh My India, Indian Dance, Traditional Indian Dance, Karam, Yakshagana, Sattriya, Manipuri, Bharatnatyam, Kuchipudi, Oddisi, Kathakali, Mohiniattyam, Kathak, Black Box, Publika, Event, Dance Showcase, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, Diplomat's Wife

Oh My India, Indian Dance, Traditional Indian Dance, Karam, Yakshagana, Sattriya, Manipuri, Bharatnatyam, Kuchipudi, Oddisi, Kathakali, Mohiniattyam, Kathak, Black Box, Publika, Event, Dance Showcase, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, Diplomat's Wife

At the end of the program, while we were by the stage, we found ourselves invited to try the dance. I always thought that it would take an act of god to get my husband to dance in front of other people. But it turns out, he only needed the talented dancers from Oh My India to encourage him. 😉

He is an introvert but I often tell him that it’s part of his job as a diplomat to be open to performing in front of other people as he might end up in a Filipino cultural showcase at some point. Being in the political section has given him enough responsibilities to evade that in the past year. Though the both of us ended up in an Indpendence Day fashion show last June. Point is – my husband just doesn’t do this sort of thing. But he did! And he looked like he had a lot of fun. I will have to stop myself from posting photos as he might end up killing me so you guys will just have to take my word for it. 😉

Congratulations to the Oh My India team for putting up such a great show! Looking forward to seeing your next dance showcase!

Love,

Carol

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