15 February 2024

The Coota Bollywood All Stars are bringing the fun of the popular film industry to the Riverina

| Jarryd Rowley
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Coota Bollywood All Stars

The Coota Bollywood All Stars are giving members of the Culcairn and Jindera communities the chance to learn more about the popular Indian film industry through workshops. Photo: Supplied.

The special energy of Bollywood is unlike anything else in the world.

The colours, props, costumes and dance moves of Bollywood are unique to the Indian-based film industry, but now thanks to the Coota Bollywood All Stars, the people of Culcairn and Jindera will have the opportunity to learn more about what makes it so special.

Fiona Braybrooks from Coota Bollywood All Stars will be running workshops at the towns’ libraries, as she looks to spread the fun nature of the growing cultural phenomenon.

Fiona developed an interest in Bollywood films when she attended university in Canberra and became friends with a girl from Punjab in north-western India.

“She introduced me to Bollywood movies and then I was fortunate enough to attend her wedding in India in 2006. That sparked my interest; so when I came back I joined a beginner Bollywood class in Canberra,” Fiona said.

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Fiona spent the next few years travelling between Australia and India where she taught English, ultimately only growing her passion for Indian culture.

Once she moved back to Cootamundra in 2014, Fiona started the Coota Bollywood All Stars with the intention of showcasing the brilliance of Bollywood to the region.

“I love the colour, the vibrancy and the fun of Bollywood dancing,” Fiona said.

“The songs Coota Bollywood dance to are upbeat, happy and expressive songs that just make you smile and want to groove! It’s also such an accessible style of dance – anyone can participate!”

Those attending the workshop can expect to learn a short dance routine as well as find out more about Bollywood dance and the Hindi film industry.

“I will also bring along some props and costumes from our Coota Bollywood All Stars collection, so we can talk about different types of costumes, fabrics and styles we wear when we perform,” she said.

Fiona encourages anyone who is interested to have a go, even if they aren’t confident to try the dance moves.

“It’s totally normal to feel unsure about something you haven’t tried before, but do come along, learn a little more about Bollywood dance and there’s no obligation to dance,” Fiona said.

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“Come and enjoy the costumes, fabrics and props and still be part of the workshop fun!

“I’m really looking forward to bringing the fun of Bollywood dance to the Culcairn and Jindera communities.

“I always enjoy sharing my love of Bollywood dance and talking about the artistic process behind the Coota Bollywood All Stars!”

Bollywood Workshops will be held at the Culcairn Library and Jindera Library on Tuesday 9 January at 11 am and 2 pm respectively.

While the events are free, bookings are required and can be made by calling Culcairn Library or Jindera Library on 02 6036 0100.

Original Article published by Jarryd Rowley on Region Riverina.

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