The Globalization of Bollywood Dance

Though the concept of ‘Bollywood Industry’ came into the picture somewhere around the 1970s, it wasn’t until the early 2000s that it started creating its own distinct identity in other countries. Considering this situation, it isn’t surprising that until a couple of decades ago, the concept of Bollywood dance was unknown to most of the western countries and a few outsiders who did know about it, ridiculed it for being too loud and flashy. This scenario has now undergone a major transformation and Bollywood films, songs, as well as dance routines,  are gaining immense popularity everywhere around the globe. This fame is obvious from the mushrooming of a large number of Bollywood Dance Classes in London, New York, Sydney, Los Angeles, Melbourne, and many other popular cities of the world.


The start of this transformation can be attributed to the Bollywood music and dance shows which started taking place abroad and garnered a lot of appreciation and response from the Indian diaspora who had settled there. This slowly led to a development of a steady fan-base in these countries which soon spread to the local audience. Especially London has emerged as a hotspot for Bollywood dance and you can see a lot of locals actively participating in Indian Bollywood dancing in London. Due to globalisation of Bollywood dance, the number of enthusiasts passionately engaging themselves in the process of learning the art of Bollywood dancing has also gone up significantly!

The globalisation of Bollywood dance received an additional boost when various dance companies from India started arranging Bollywood dance tours to foreign countries. These shows, though devoid of a powerful star cast, played a major role in getting the audience abroad hooked to Bollywood dance. As a result of this globalisation, numerous Bollywood dance classes in London, Paris, Dallas, Cape Town, etc. started witnessing a steady stream of participants for their courses. Indian Bollywood dancing in London has now evolved beyond just Indian wedding dancers in London and Bollywood dance performances in London and has gone on to the extent of incorporating this vibrant dance form in their exercise and Zumba routines.

Since Internet and YouTube has made it easier to view and access various dance videos, people who cannot sign up for Bollywood dance classes in London, prefer to learn Indian Bollywood dancing in London via the countless videos that are uploaded every day.

What sets Bollywood dance apart from other international dance forms and adds to its popularity is the ability to tell a story purely through the movements. It is a form of expression and incorporates a large number of elements ranging from fantasy, love, sensuality to agony, distress and anger. The use of fancy props, swanky costumes, and dramatic lighting further piques the interest of the audience worldwide. This growing interest is what led to the advent of Indian Bollywood dancing in London.

Along with the mainstream countries in the West, Bollywood dancing has also caught the fancy of other lesser-known Asian countries. These countries too have seen an immense boost in the number of Asian wedding dancers and Bollywood dancers. The pulsating and energetic beats of Bollywood music and the variety of expressive moves has brought about this Bollywood trend in the Asian continent.

The popularity of Bollywood dance in other countries has grown so much that many people are experimenting with the styles and adding their own variations to the Bollywood moves. This globalisation has led to a fusion of Bollywood dance with hip-hop, break-dance, ballet, popping and locking, and so many other styles! Several Bollywood Dance Classes in London also teach students these fusion styles in addition to quintessential Bollywood dance.

Another defining moment in the history of Bollywood dance happened when Asian wedding dancers were approached to perform at the wedding celebrations and events of people living abroad. These larger-than-life dance routines, replete with a generous dose of desi thumkas and filmy beats, were choreographed and performed by Asian wedding dancers and added to the glitz and glam factor of the weddings. This idea soon became famous all over the globe and led to a surge in the number of Indian wedding dancers in London as well as in many other popular western cities.

Along with the trend of Asian wedding dancers and Indian wedding dancers in London, globalisation of Bollywood dance has also brought to the forefront the concept of Bollywood-themed Hen Parties! Hen parties are essentially bachelorette parties which are organised for the bride-to-be by her friends. In Bollywood-themed Hen Parties, the girls usually attend a dance course together at a studio and are dressed up in Bollywood style clothes, accessories and make-up.

The recognition that Bollywood dance form has garnered abroad can also be attributed to its escapist nature. Escapist nature is the creation of imaginary spaces and flamboyant, exaggerated situations which are expressed through the moves. This escapist nature is absent in most Western dance forms and hence, most Bollywood dance classes in London try to incorporate such songs and moves into their routine which give the participants a feel of this nature of Bollywood dance.

The exoticism associated with Bollywood dance is another reason behind it becoming a trending dance form internationally. Most of the Bollywood songs are shot at exotic locales and feature stunning sets. This exoticism and glamour add to the appeal of Indian Bollywood dancing in London and make this dance form a hit among Indian wedding dancers London.

While this dance form cannot be considered as a representation of the Indian traditional dance forms, it is definitely a large part of the Indian film industry. Indian dance classes in London, New York, Paris, Melbourne, and other well-known cities have a lion’s share in propagating the essence of Bollywood dance form to the world. This popularity has brought about an increase in multiculturalism and put India on the map of the world when it comes to dance. Also, the fact that these dance classes constantly keep on updating and improvising their routines, makes sure that they don’t end up stereotyping Bollywood dance.

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