29 December 2010

Dance with Jhalak Dikhhla Jaa by Ramya Sarma

Everything you always wanted to know about …
This book is about Bollywood dance in general, and specifically for aspirants of the TV show Jhalak Dikhhla Jaa – or for anyone who wants to learn this form of popular dance.
In the first section, Understanding The Basics, topics covered include how to handle stage fright, how to choose the right song, how to hide one’s flaws – and other matters that might worry you if you want to start and don’t quite know how. The second section, Put On Your Dancing Shoes, provides neat summaries of various international dance forms which have influenced Bollywood dance.
I found the presentation easy to follow and the photographs – there are a large number – very captivating and representative of the fun and glamour of Bollywood dance.
What I liked best about this book is the language. It’s easy to read and idiomatically flawless. Many who will read it would have had very little previous exposure to simple, direct and high-quality writing like this. Most of us in this country have no clue how to use prepositions or articles – for some odd reason most of us sit ON tables rather than AT them – so I believe that this book is very likely to teach more than just dance.
One thing that I found slightly jarring was the introduction by Saroj Khan. Actually the intro itself is a charming view of the celebrated choreographer’s career. What I found amiss was words like “thereafter” and “essentially” used in it, which I thought unlikely – but when I checked with Ramya Sarma, she assured me that Saroj Khan had indeed used these words herself.

Incidentally, Ramya herself is a Bharatnatyam dancer with endless years of practice and performance until she turned to writing.


  1. Excellent book gets an impeccable review. Pleasure to read the latter. Will try and obtain the former. Best wishes.

  2. Glad you liked it Divyabh. It's easily available - I bought it from flipkart.