AV Dhamaka hosts local high school Bollywood teams at Isvara showcase

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Aimee Sitter

Amador Valley Dhamaka finish off their season with the ending pose of their final performance.

On Saturday, Apr. 15, Amador’s Dhamaka Bollywood team hosted 16 other schools to participate in Isvara, the Amador Bollywood dance showcase. Complete with a fashion show, MC’s and over a 100 performers, Isvara is a huge milestone for the Bollywood team at AV.

“There was a lot of planning involved, a couple months in advance. It took us a while to figure everything out because it was Amador’s first time hosting a showcase and it took time to figure out what needed to be done and when it needed to be done,” said Anisha Madiraju (‘24)Dhamaka Captain.

While Isvara doesn’t have a direct translation in English, the name of the event was decided not because of its meaning but because of its sound. Typically, Bollywood showcases, such as Irvington High’s Dil-se, are given a catchy name to make the event more memorable. 

“It was a pretty name that we decided to do because a lot of Bollywood showcases around the Bay Area have pretty names derived from Hindi that have beautiful meanings. I believe Isvara means ‘shine’ or ‘brightness,’” said Madiraju.

Preparation for this event was not easy and required the collaboration of AV Administrators, performers from other schools, light and sound crew, and AV Dhamaka themselves. Everything from choreography to costumes were prepared ahead of time. 

MC’s Aditi Chinta, Siddharth Mane, and Sameer Ramakarishna entertain the crowd and introduce the dance groups coming onto the stage. (Aimee Sitter)

“The captains started preparing all the day back in August with the rallies performances we did. We did all that along with prepping for our showcase season, which consists of 7-8 songs plus choreography and formation, but it wasn’t just the captains, it was a whole team effort,” said Dhwani Shetty (’23)Dhamaka Captain.

The Amador Multi-purpose room was nearly packed full with audience members eager to get a glimpse of the show. Aside from just Amador’s team, 16 other Bollywood teams including Dublin Afsana, Foothill Fizaa and Monte Vista Bhangra attended and performed.

“For this showcase we prepared by practicing weeks prior and making our set, setting formations, and cleaning everything up to make it look coordinated and energetic. We ran our whole set many times to try to perfect it.” said Kavya Singh, Captain of Dublin Afsana Bollywood Team.

Going forward, Amador Dhamaka hopes to host more showcases, making it a tradition to celebrate Indian heritage the way Donversity is celebrated every year.

“It’s important to hold these events because it lets us show more of our diversity and show that we can do the same things as other schools. This is the first year we’ve ever had such a big asian cultural show and it’s just another step to becoming more inclusive and having more diversity,” said Shetty.