I first performed this piece in a spoken word and poetry reading event with a small seasonal community theater in Cambridge, MA. Just recently, and 12 years later, I re-read the poem. I want to share with you an excerpt from it, because it's a favorite of mine:
Now you understand
Just why my head’s not bowed.
I don’t shout or jump about
Or have to talk real loud.
When you see me passing,
It ought to make you proud.
It’s in the click of my heels,
The bend of my hair,
the palm of my hand,
The need for my care.
’Cause I’m a woman
For a need to quantify my feelings for this poem, watch me borrow words from Paul Engle: "Poetry is ordinary language raised to the Nth power".
- Nazarette 2011
Nazar's first showcase performance: A Century - Bollywood through the Decades was a roaring success. More than the numbers, what made the night for me was our incredible audience. When they liked something that they saw, they clapped, whistled, and cheered us on, which brought out the best in us, as dancers. With every hoot and holler, my smile became bigger, my moves more pronounced, and my energy more limitless. When we struck a pose at the end of our finale and the
audience rose to their feet as they vocally supported us, I knew that every bit of sweat and perseverance was worth it for the team. Nazar had done it, and things will only get brighter here on out.
- Nazarette 2010
Nazar has exposed me to different forms of dance and opened my eyes to the beauty of various styles. It has deepened my appreciation for the art form.
Nazar has brought color and vibrancy to my life and given me an artistic outlet to share my feelings with the world. After all, all the world is a stage.
Nazar has become a major source of happiness in my life. Some of my best friends in Boston were introduced to me through Nazar, and I never would have had the chance to meet otherwise. It's allowed me to stay active with dance after college, and it has given me the opportunity to explore my culture through both my fellow dancers as well as the variety of dance styles that we tackle. Everyone brings to the team the most incredible mix of passion, fire, dedication, creativity and major TALENT. Nazar has pushed me to become a better dancer and performer in every way!
What would I do on Wednesday nights ( and Monday nights when I am practicing, or Tuesday nights, when I am thinking of costumes, or Thursday nights when I am thinking of new Bollywood songs, or Friday nights when I am choreographing something, or Saturday nights when I am refreshing my inbox for new Nazar emails, or Sunday nights when I am missing my beautiful Nazarettes who are so talented and bring so much energy to the team and motivate me to push myself further to become a better dancer/choreographer/team member)? Nazar has given me something to look forward to everyday :)
Dance is a part of my soul. It's cheesy, for sure, but at the end of the day, it's the only thing I can say I've been a part of my entire life. Save years 1-4. As a dancer in high school and junior high, it was the outlet that allowed me to develop the confidence to pursue my life goals, both inside and outside the studio. In college, it was what made me feel part of a family when I was far, far away from mine. Dance allowed me to really appreciate the diversity of those around me; the value of what our various backgrounds brought the table; and the incredible power that can be borne of a group of unlike individuals working towards a common goal. After college, dance has granted me the rare blessing of the chance to understand who I am and where I come from. Where my beliefs originate from and the culture of my homeland, through expression, through history, through my teammates.