What Art Means To Me – A Series: Amita Batra
We live in a world where words are a vessel to transport meaning. Often times people are hired based on how well they can convey something with their words. What is this something? Clearly, we as people in the big picture of things are concerned not with the phonetic sound of the letter L but what the letter L means to us when put the letters O, V, and E after it. Just like words, art is a medium to translate meaning. However, art, unlike words, allows for us to express without some sort of grammatical structure. For me dance is a type of art that has served as this boundless expression. Whether I want to immerse myself in a sad song and concave my body to truly embody the feeling of being defeated or I want to pop and lock to release my inner swag, there is always a way for me to express exactly how I feel through dance, a power that I don’t feel I have using solely words.
As someone who is fortunate enough to have been exposed to various styles of dance, it’s been interesting to see how each style has its own way of expressing the same emotion. Many of these styles originated from different parts of the world, Kathak from India, ballet from France, and jazz from African American parts of the USA. However, despite having originated in different places at different times with different cultural influences, I know how I would go about expressing my feelings in each. This clearly shows the universal power that dance holds to serve as a medium of expression and that is a huge reason that I choose to spend my free time dancing. The feeling I get spinning on my feet carefree is far beyond anything I can describe.
In today’s day and age, especially in the desi community, there are many people who dance for many reasons, some to make new friends, some for the hype, some to try something new. While the reason people choose to dance is merely a matter of perspective and each reason right in its own way, I dance to tell the story that is in my mind, to play a character, to convey an emotion that words can’t do justice. Dance, for me, is my diary, but instead of writing the way I feel, I move the way I feel.