The spirit of dance, creativity and altruism imbues every move of the gifted Shiamak Davar. No wonder he has created so much more than the famous ‘Shiamak Style’. I am in awe of this man who dances like a dream.
You have always maintained that you are inspired by what is created around you. Yet you have been a natural when it comes to excelling in different things. How do you pull that off?
I think all of us have a reason for our existence. We choose this life with a mission and I think performing arts is that for me. From childhood, all my memories are of me singing, acting, dancing and performing. This is the only thing I’ve known. I was a legend in my living room singing for family and friends! So like you said, if you do what you’re created for, it will come naturally to you. I’ve never tried to be someone else or do something that isn’t me. I think that is what people like – originality. My mission is to spread the joy of dance, so whether it is through my dance school or through shows, I love what I do and I think that translates into how everyone else perceives it!
Singer, dancer, choreographer, music composer and many more… What is the secret behind your untiring self?
I just love what I do so I don’t look at it as work. I think when you’re passionate about something it inspires you to keep going ahead. It’s a continuous process of learning, teaching and learning more. Whether it is singing, performing or choreographing; any form of the performing arts is therapeutic. So as against tiring me, it in facts strengthens, rejuvenates and heals me.
Your Victory Arts Foundation initiative has proven dance to be therapy as well. How did you start it all?
From the time I started my classes nearly 30 years back, I’ve had people who had physical and mental challenges come and dance. It was unbelievable to see how dance helped them, healed them. So at the Summer Funk shows they would dance on stage and, even though they couldn’t move much, their spirit would fly. This is when I decided to take my motto of ‘Have Feet, Will Dance’ one step further to ‘Have Spirit, Will Triumph’ with my not-for-profit organisation Victory Arts Foundation. I set it up with an aim to reach out to more people who could use dance as therapy. Today, it reaches out to thousands of people with special needs, HIV/ AIDS affected/ infected and the lesser privileged. For me, my mission was spreading the joy of dance and healing through the performing arts. So this was just one piece of the puzzle in my attempt to reach out to more people and help them find hope and faith.
This article was first published in Cineblitz Magazine.