top of page

Smitha's Dance Story

Smitha Shailan, BILB Instructor

I started dancing when was a toddler whenever my parents would play music. It ranged from Bollywood to English music to even devotional songs. However, the first time I really fell in love with dance was when I saw my cousins performing on stage, adorned with sparkling jewelry and colorful costumes when I was 8.

My mom put me in a Bharatanatyam class, after I persuaded her and I loved every bit of it. I picked up the steps pretty quickly and soon I was performing on stage too. I was in the Bharatanatyam class for about

three years.

In 2010, when I was eleven years old, my family and I moved across the world to India. We stayed in a town called Mysore in Karnataka, which is really known for music and dance. During the British Rule, people would perform at the Mysore Palace for the king queen.

Living in this culturally rich town, I did not want to lose the opportunity to continue dancing. I was under the mentorship of a guru, Dr. Nagashree, and took my junior exam in Bharthanatyam when I was in 10th grade.

As time went on, I wanted to expand my experience with dancing. In school, a few of my friends and I formed a dance group to perform at school events and went on to regional dance competitions as well. I also choreographed dances for the younger kids at my school, which little did I know, would lead to where I am today.

When I came back to the US for college, I thought that my dancing days were over with how busy school would be. But, back in 2017, as I was googling things about dance, I stumbled upon Bend it Like Bollywood Dance Company.

When I looked into it, I learned that they were looking for dance instructors, but I never imagined myself being an actual instructor. Nevertheless, I seized the opportunity. I remember leaving a voice mail and just hoped that I would get a message back. Almost a week later, Pavani responded and I met up with her.

After meeting Pavani, I knew that working with her at BILB was where my dance journey would take me. I am so incredibly grateful that I am a part of this company. Everybody here, instructors and non-instructors, are very passionate about what they do and are so kind.

I’m very happy that I found my place with BILB and hope for many more exciting adventures with them to come!


Recent Posts

See All


bottom of page