Terrance Lewis Curated
Indian Dancer & Choreographer
CURATED BY :
How did you enter the film industry as a choreographer?
What was your school life like?
What was the one thing that you really wanted and bought it when you received big amount of money?
How do you deal with stress?
What was your initial experience in Bollywood like?
What motivates you the most?
How did you come up with the initiative of how to get out of phone and use dance as a way of a healthy and happy life?
How did dance become your career?
What advice would you like to give to someone who is pursuing dance?
When did you feel like you have got the turning point for dance in your life?
What was your childhood like?
How do you personally keep a social media balance?
What do you have to say about how social media has become like a job?
Who has the strongest social media game amongst your celebrity friends?
You have always given teaching the most priority and also learning different forms yourself, how important that process is for you?
How do you feel as a teacher when you see your students like Shakti, Punit doing so well in life?
What do you enjoy the most, choreographing, teaching or judging?
Who is the one Bollywood actor who you think brings your vision to life the best?
You have also discovered the avenue of YouTube recently, how is that going?
Would you like to start your own reality show?
If you come up with your own reality show, which Bollywood actor would you like to have as a judge?
You have changed yourself completely all these years, what’s the reason behind it?
When are you planning to get married?
If given a chance, which Bollywood actress would you like to date?
What are your future plans?
What is your relationship with your parents like?
When did you get your first break?
What is the difference in dance industry of India and America?
Tell us some of the roads that you have travelled in this journey of being a roll model for many youngsters.
What are the things which influenced you?
What was the journey like from being a dancer to a celebrity choreographer?
What was your experience like judging dance champions?
Remo and you have been friends from too long. Do you two compete with each other?
Why haven't you ventured into acting or directing yet?
How much reality shows helped in promoting dance as a career in our country?
Today newcomers in Bollywood are expected to be great dancers. Your take on it?
How did you start your journey in dance and choreography?
I was born to dance, I guess because at the tender age of 6 and 8 I'd be watching stuff on TV and trying to memories steps. So yes, I had rhythm but it was all self learnt; watching Michael Jackson and other contemporaries.
At what age did you start dancing?
As I mentioned as a kid I loved dancing at family weddings or at home to entertain my family and relatives. The applause after a performance was reason enough to keep entertaining. It was only much later that I was introduced to dance training by Pervez Shetty, my very first teacher.
What were the challenges that you faced?
Family pressure came early on when I chose to dance, they wanted me to have a 9 to 5 job as we were a huge family of 8 and poor. Yet I decided to stand my ground and started teaching and earning my pocket money through tuitions for school subjects post which I even started taking dance tuitions.
Did your family support you?
Unfortunately, no, but I don't blame them because dance was not so easily accepted as a profession then.
What was the turning point of your life?
When I got a scholarship to train with Pervez Shetty I realised that dance was a discipline I needed to follow. That was the first changing point. Several years later I was introduced to contemporary dance by Jaan Freeman and Susanne Linke, then there was no looking back.
What made you take fitness sessions for celebrities and shift from dancing to becoming a fitness trainer?
Dance, as I mentioned, was not so easily accepted even as a recreational class at those times so to reach out to an audience I decided to mix dance with fitness. That's how I got my major clientele from Bollywood. They were hooked to my dancer code classes and only a couple of years later I got called by Alyque Padamsee to choreograph Evita. That finally started my career on dance officially.
How did you make way for your passion; dance and choreography?
By my grit, perseverance and never say die attitude; I am a go getter and very driven. Once I've made up my mind nothing can stop me and similarlyif my mind is not into it nothing can convince me.
What are the right steps to take dance as a career?
Once u know its dance that makes you happy and that you're willing to work hard for it (physically and mentally, dancing is taxing ) then you must start training. Once your body is mouldable, you can adapt and learn several other styles; start with basics and then select or fine tune your choice or style of dance.
Is it better to focus on one particular style of dance and take classes mainly in that style and audition for companies of that style?
Yes it's very important to finally know what you enjoy most. For instance, I enjoy hip hop too yet my niche is contemporary.
What are the growing avenues of dance in India?
With so many dance academies cropping up the avenues surely are opening up. Dance reality shows are also giving youngsters a lucrative opening into the field of shows, sangeet performances, teaching and choreographing for stage shows too. Moreover dance is a big part of Bollywood movies so there again many more youngsters are joining the dance fraternity as dancers or choreographers too.
Who can opt for a career in dance and choreography?
Dance is a skill but not everyone can dance or choreograph. A choreographer is one who has a overall vision, the broader perspective, creativity in all fields not just the steps alone
There are many dance enthusiasts who may not be extraordinary performers. What can their career prospects be?
Those who are not good performers may be good teachers, or may even be good at choreography. Besides, if not dancers they could also be good managers at dance academies.
What opportunities lie inside the dance industry?
Choreography for shows, movies, musicals, sangeets Performing at shows, musicals, movies Teaching at classes or for dance reality shows Competing in dance reality shows Starting your own dance academy.
Which dance form do you love the most?
Contemporary, of course.
Is there a fixed period for a dancing career?
The earlier the better, though I don't think there's an end period. If you really want to, one can keep dancing.
Is it necessary to be trained in dancing to build a career?
Yes, for sure, dance is a discipline just like other art forms.
How many years of training are required to start a career in dance?
Earlier the better, the longer you train the better you get, learning should never stop .
Choreography and dance, how different are they?
They are different on many levels, dancers can't always choreograph and likewise, not all choreographers make good dancers. To be able to do both is rare and requires you to be two different people at the same time.
What is the key skill required to be an extraordinary choreographer?
Extraordinary vision and an ability to look into all departments from choreography to lighting to makeup, hairstyling, costuming and yes being a good listener and counsellor too.
What is the key skill required to be a performer/dancer?
The ability to keep going with a positive mind despite all odds; Physical and mental fatigue is common.
There are so many forms of dancing. Which form, as per you, makes one the most versatile dancer?
Ballet training is very important but most importantly if you keep training in various styles you will get versatile.
What is the period required to learn each dance form and become a professional and is there any age limit?
One should try to start early so the body adapts and is more flexible, dance is for all age groups but I doubt people would want to take up dance as a profession post a certain age, especially if they haven't danced before at all. Yet, I believe in 'never say never'!
What do you foresee in your dancing career?
I want to explore dance on a platform that I haven't explored before, could be on celluloid with me being the lead or even directing the movie.
How do you see dance?
Dance is an expression of my being and who I am, but there's more to me. I am multi-faceted and I want to explore more avenues of my creativity.
Why do you think people should choose dance?
If you have to wonder if you should dance or not, then you probably should not be dancing.
Do dance talent shows really help in building a career in that field?
To kickstart, maybe yes, but people have short term memories. You're as good as the last show on TV. So to sustain one has to keep at it, learning and training and being in the limelight all work hand in hand.
What is your mantra for life?
Live and let live. Do not settle for mediocrity.
Could you give us one piece of advice for people who would like to follow in your footsteps?
I'm not perfect but I work hard and am a student for life; I'll never stop learning or questioning.