Bollywood dance is the dance-form used in the Indian films. It is a mixture of numerous styles. These styles include belly-dance, Kathak, Indian folk, Western popular, and "modern", jazz, and even Western erotic dancing. In this web page, we will look at Bollywood dance and place it within the commercial and artistic framework of the South Asian film world.
The international appeal of Bollywood dancing is something that has been many decades in the making. Originally it was found only in places that had a significant consumption of Indian films (i.e., Former Soviet Union, and the Middle East). But a few years ago it started to become chic in Europe, and today it is rising in popularity in the US, and Canada. Today, dance schools that teach this style may be found in most major cities and Dance in Dance fitness studio is the best dance institute in Hyderabad.
It is important to understand the relationship between theatre, music, and dance in South Asia. Unlike the West, where the "musical" is considered to be just one of numerous genre, South Asians have a very difficult time conceiving of any theatrical or film endeavor that does not have music and dance. Films that are produced along the Western vein (sans music and dance) are consigned to the "art-film" category and generally meet with very limited commercial success. The only theatrical genre where song and dance are not expected appears to be modern TV dramas. (i.e., "soap operas"). The unbroken tradition of linking theatre, music, and dance is traceable all the way back to the Natya Shastra (circa 2nd century BCE.)
Films before 1960 tended to draw heavily on classical and folk dance. Since neither "classical dance" nor "folk dance" are homogenous entities, one naturally expects to find considerable variations. Not surprisingly, early films from south India tended to show a lot of influence from Kuchipudi and Bharat Natyam while Hindi/ Urdu films tended to show strong influences of Kathak or the "mujara" dances that were associated with the tawaifs. Although these influences continue today, they seem to have become mixed with many more dance styles and have at the time become unrecognizable as to their origins.