It takes two' to Salsa!
When it comes to success, the same rules as those in love apply: To follow your heart and keep at it — or so believes the Bengaluru-based dance partners, Nidhi Agarwal and Abhishek Singh; the first Indian team to have secured the second place in the prestigious World Salsa Summit held in Miami, held recently. In an exclusive chat, they tell us all…
Though they were placed in four Asian Championships held at India and Singapore this year, the duo admits how their recent feat was indeed a breakthrough. “The World Salsa Summit was a life-changing experience for both of us. We witnessed the best artists and competitors from across the globe competing against each other at the platform.
We were envisioning being part of this Championship for six months before we could go.” They participated in World Salsa Summit directly through online registration. “The qualifying rounds happen at the Summit itself,” mentions Abhishek.
Tracing their passion for salsa, Abhishek says, “We both started salsa at different points in our lives. Nidhi has been dancing for the past nine years and I started off a few years after her. But we became dance partners last year. Our start was pretty challenging, which included juggling regular practice hours with our jobs, handling injuries, learning by ourselves without having a dedicated mentor or coach. Nevertheless, it’s been quite an insightful journey.”
While dance is certainly one of the dominant passions they share, if you thought it was all that there was to the two, think again — Abhishek and Nidhi are individuals with a multitude of interests. “I also love listening to music, playing cricket and table tennis,” says Abhishek, while Nidhi pipes that fitness is something that gets her attention. “Dance and fitness are so connected. But I also like watching movies, cooking healthy meals with my sister and mom and spending quality time alone.”
Quiz them about their observations about the salsa scene in the country and the dance partners assert, “Salsa is growing quite fast in India. We see a lot of congresses and dance festivals now in different cities, promoting salsa and other Latin dance styles. These festivals are also a good forum to interact with international artistes. It’s still not up there compared to some countries but it’s impressive how modern India is taking to it.”
With a full day job before them (Abhishek is into software, and Nidhi is into communications) the dance partners assert that it all boils down to toeing the line. “It is very challenging to manage both. But on a regular basis, we finish our practice hours before 8 am and then head to work. We try catching up on the weekends, if we missed our practices during the week,” says Abhishek.
Surmising about the road ahead, he reveals, “We plan to keep competing and improving ourselves. The focus for us this year, would be quality. We also plan to start our own Salsa and Bachata classes.”