Posted on July 30, 2020 at 9:11 pm

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Gujarati dancer, Indiana, puts India on the world map with her Hollywood debut

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Taking off her shoes in front of a prestigious panel, Hollywood director Laura Terusso and choreographer Aakomon, and performing Garba and Bhangra to a Chris Brown song, and a standing ovation later is exactly how this Gujarati dancer from a middle class family in Mumbai bagged a role in a Warner Brothers and Alicia Keys produced dance film Work It slated to release worldwide on Netflix this August.

After having assisted choreographers for reality dance shows back in India, Indiana flew to Toronto, Canada. While looking for a promising career in dancing after having graduated from World’s No. 1 Musical theatre school ‘Laine Theatre Arts’ with alumni like Victoria Beckham. After a long hustle and some odd jobs landed her first Hollywood debut Work It.

Cast of Work It- Gujarati dancer, Indiana
Cast of Work It, featuring Gujarati dancer, Indiana

Her Journey

Ecstatic about her first deserving break, Indiana shares her journey, ‘I’d sent in a dance video & managed to get shortlisted for a real audition. I was nervous, but I was used to rejections so I went in anyway. I went full out during my performance & hoped for the best.”

“Towards the end of the audition, Aakomon asked if anyone wanted to showcase any different style of dancing. I was sure to not be able to match the level of flips, locking, popping & didn’t want to embarass myself. But later I took my shoes off, jumped right in at the very last moment & impressed the judges with Garba, Bhangra & some Jazz funk. I got a standing ovation & I later was called in to read for a role. I cleared all rounds, I got the news last May. It was 2 am in India, I woke my parents up & we couldn’t stop crying.’

During trying times in Bollywood with news channels feeding on Nepotism debate, Indiana with no godfather worked her way hard to her debut movie & will be sharing screen space with one of the biggest pop stars Sabrina Carpenter. Indiana shares, ‘My parents let me spread out my wings & let me choose dance as a career & supported me throughout. The journey to the way up there was full of roadblocks but dreaming & consistently working towards your goal does pay off. So start where you are, use what you have & do what you can..’

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