Kathak, and tap, and all that jazz


Jhalak Dikhhla Jaa Australia winner Divya Saxena talks about her love for dance performing for the show in India

Academics, drama and dance might sound as a strange combination but Divya Saxena handles all with ease. The student from Girraween High School, which is an academic selective high school, was recently declared as the winner of the Jhalak Dikhhla Jaa Australia and got an opportunity to fly all the way from Sydney to the sets of the reality show in India.

Although she wants to pursue a career in law, Divya says her life revolves around dance. “I began learning dance at the age of four and have learnt different dance forms including ballet, hip hop, tap dancing, Bollywood and kathak,” says Divya, who adds that it was her mom who introduced her to the dance form when she was four. “I have been trained for six years in kathak in the Jaipur, Lucknow and Banaras Gharana,” she says, and adds that both her mother and her guru Dr Madhvi Mohindra deserve all the credit for her success.

Sharing her experiences from sets of Jhalak Dikhhla Jaa, Divya says, “For me it was a lifetime experience. I got an opportunity to look inside the glitzy industry. It looks so glamorous from the outside, but after spending time on the sets, I realized how hard it is to present such big shows.”

On the show, Divya’s shoot lasted four hours. “Performing live in front of all those experienced people was an achievement in itself and every one encouraged me,” adds Divya.

Now that her dance dreams are on course, Divya has set her eyes on drama. Earlier this year, Divya was selected for the Year 10 State Drama Ensemble for NSW among 22 other students. “This opportunity has not only polished my drama skills and my acting abilities, but has also given me a platform to perform in the Seymour Theatre in October amongst many talented professionals,” adds Divya.

 “I am also an active participant in many theatre shows. I was the lead child artiste in ‘Devdas – The Musical’ and have volunteered in many charity events as well as toured with Bollywood actor Govinda on his visit to Australia,” says Divya.

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