HUMLA, Feb 2: This typical festival in the mountainous district of Humla is all about worshiping deity, playing drums, dancing, singing, feasting and merrymaking. It is also about wearing unique outfits, decorations and processions. ‘Mane’, the winter festival of the Lama community of Burause village has just got over. But the thrill lives on.
Mukesh Dhakal is your typical college boy. He goes to college, has a great time with his friends, studies when he has to, and sleeps whenever he can. Nothing about him will strike you as extraordinary at first glance. But when you see him on stage, all notions of regularity you associated with him will be washed off before he steps off it. For there is nothing ordinary in the way he moves his body, and the way rhythm and music seem to course through him.
The common belief is that to experience enlightenment one must sit motionless and be completely still. Dance seems antithetical to enlightenment. But not many know of Charya Nritya, or Charya dance. Charya is a sacred form of Buddhist art, which, if done properly with right understanding, will lead to enlightenment, as per the Newar Buddhist tradition of Nepal.
A day off from his work, 20-year-old Saksham Tamang yet finds himself whacking and locking and popping while carrying his household chores. The passion for dancing as he believes was instilled in him by his mother as she was a classical/cultural dancer and instructor herself. Although he followed the footsteps of his mother, he did it in his own style through the compact moves of hip-hopping.
Neha Christopher always loved to dance but it was actually her mother who steered her towards exploring the therapeutic side of dancing. Now a certified dance and movement therapist, Christopher came to Nepal sometime in August 2017. Since then, she has already facilitated six different workshops in collaboration with six different organizations including Rupy’s International School, Pushpanjali School, and Katha Ghera and she is all geared up for an upcoming four-month long workshop with The British School students.
After the completion of his SLC, Dipendra Shahi Thakuri travelled to Kathmandu with a hope of making a mark in the field of dancing. He had not informed his family about his plans when he left his hometown. Upon arriving in Kathmandu, Dipendra joined Public Youth Campus for his higher secondary education and took on many jobs to earn his living and to continue his dancing classes.
She may be a classical Kathak dancer, but Shrestha cites Krumping, an aggressive form of hip hop dancing, as her other favorite form of dancing. It’s with this open attitude that she has been moving forward as a dancer.