How far would you go to bring a dream to life? Crossing oceans, risking all and sacrificing true love, Beyond Bollywood is not just a show; it is a monsoon of emotion that brings the fire, heat and desire of Indian dance direct to the heart of London.
The UK Premiere of a 60 day show was held at the London Palladium on Friday May 8th 2015. We sent a couple of our team to go along and give us an insight into one of the biggest Bollywood shows to hit London in years:
It’s raining men and not just any men, but Bollywood men in high heeled boots and sequined shorts!
Yes, Rajeev Goswami’s ‘Beyond Bollywood’ has rolled in to town. An infamous writer, director and choreographer, Rajiv has successfully transported a talented cast of twenty-four dancers, four actors and four musicians from India, to perform on stage at the prestigious London Palladium.
Only in London can you be a stone’s throw away from the hustle and bustle of Oxford Street, whilst being simultaneously transported on a journey through India. Beyond Bollywood brings a fresh new angle to the Bollywood genre, far from the cultural clichés; traditional dance genres, along with their history, are explored as we are transported to the Motherland, meandering through Gujarat, Orissa, Punjab, Agra and Tamil Nadu. The symbolism behind the festivals of Holi and Diwali are also discovered and of course there is the comedic and raunchy element too!
You are fixated from the loud and powerful opening scene, consisting of dhol players, colourful dancers and the extremely catchy ‘Namaste’ theme tune. In fact, the show boasts a fantastic soundtrack throughout, no surprise, having been composed by Salim and Sulaiman Merchant (Bollywood’s renowned music directors), with lyrics by talented Irfan Siddiqui.
The only room for improvement were the dance formations and moves; some needed tightening up and lacked synchronisation, having said that, there were some very talented dancers in the troupe, performing an array of dances in style and with precision.
A great story line keeps you engrossed between the Kathak, Lezim, Bhangra, Garbar and folk dances; Shaily, who travels to India from her hometown of Munich, is in search for the heart and soul of Indian dance, as a tribute to her late Mother‘s wish to save her failing theatre. Costumes were eye-catching, as were the 3D effect digital backdrops.
My advice is to pack your bags, feel the rhythm, overload your senses and go Beyond Bollywood!
Saf & Saba