Lockdown Routines: Sonalika & Wonderkid Shrinika Sharpening Their Odissi Skills

In Our Special Series, Danseuse Tells OB She Has Finally Got The Time To Teach Her Daughter Odia Language

Bhubaneswar: The prolonged nationwide lockdown, to curb the spread of novel coronavirus, has helped Odissi expert Sonalika Padhi and daughter Shrinika Purohit learn more about this dance form.

“Despite the household chores, Shrinika and I are devoting more time to Odissi and practising a lot,” says Sonalika.

Shrinika, who was labelled as the ‘Wonder kid of Odissi’, has been working on her flexibility. “She is also working on Angasudhi. Besides, she is doing a lot of stretching,” Sonalika informs.

“We got irritated during the first week of lockdown as we could not practise much in our flat. Then the manager of our apartment allowed us to go the park of our housing complex,” reveals the dancer who is currently in Bengaluru.

“We go to the park early in the morning and do our exercises as well as practise Odissi, maintaining social distancing,” adds Sonalika.

She has been conducting online classes too. “If I don’t train my students, they will forget all the steps. Odissi is a performing art and practice is mandatory,” observes Sonalika.

“Many of my students are young and I think children need to connect with the dance, as they are very fickle minded,” she says.

Shrinika is 10, but has been helping her mother in household work. “She has it at the back of her mind that if we finish the work quickly, she can devote more time to her hobbies,” says Sonalika, who runs a dance school ‘Ekaagra Svarasa Academy’ in Bengaluru.

Sonalika is glad that she is getting time to teach her daughter Odia. “She has picked up Odia in the lockdown period and can read now,” says the proud mother.

Sonalika has a five-year-old son too, who has an inclination towards dancing. “Shrinika helps her brother in studies and dancing,” the mother informs.

Sonalika has been making some dance videos for YouTube channel. “My husband is helping me in making the videos during weekends. We have really started enjoying this lockdown now,” she remarks, adding that she is also working on books on Odissi dance for her students.

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