D.C.-born Bollywood-style dance classes take off in NY
Doonya classes, which combines high-energy aerobics and conditioning with the hip-swaying, arm-swirling exuberance of Indian folk, pop and classical dance, is being lead by an Indian-origin girl in a New York studio.
Named after the Hindi word for world, Doonya is the brainchild of two fitness instructors who tapped their heritage for inspiration, the Washington Post reported.
It draws on the infectious song and dance numbers popularized by Bollywood, where movies usually feature intricate love sagas and plot twists.
Before launching into an hour of kicks, hand flicks and hip bumps, Kajal Desai turned to the dozen students assembled in a Dupont Circle fitness studio last month and offered two pieces of advice - "Smile lots and have fun."
That's what she's been doing since 2005, when she met Priya Pandya.
Desai was working for Booz Allen Hamilton in Washington, and Pandya, a Georgetown graduate, had stuck around the city for a position at the World Bank. And both were desperately looking for Indian dance.