Sharmila Vijay

I have been learning in SKDC under the tutelage of Guru Vishal Ramani for about 14 years now. I found out about SKDC when I moved to the bay area for my job, and thought of ‘just trying to dance again’, and joined the school. Little did I know that Guru Vishalji and SKDC were going to be a significant part of my life! I kept coming back to continue the learning even after I had my kids – and that is all due to the passion the Guru inculcates in her students, and the support the SKDC family provides.

Gur Vishalji’s creativity, in the choreography of jathis, sancharis, dance dramas etc., is something that I continue to be in awe of. Some of my best moments in SKDC are when Guru Vishalji dances impromptu in the classroom – a treat to our eyes.

I have had several opportunities to see her teach to young kids, and have always admired her teaching techniques, her patience and how she makes every single kid feel welcomed. She also gives many opportunities for the students to take part in programs that help the students to go through the process of perfecting a piece, get stage experience and get over stage fear. Guru Vishalji also provides mentoring opportunities for senior students, a valuable experience in the learning process. In addition to Bharathanatyam, Guru instills in her students cultural values and traditions, love for music and love for languages.

SKDC family provides good support for students, be it for classroom/school level coordination for practices and performances, or for the annual Arangetram/Margam season. I have found many friendships through the school and now have a social circle through SKDC that I greatly value.

A moment that I am proud of in my SKDC journey is my Arangetram. It was a challenging one, with 2 young kids to be taken care of and a full time job to manage. With great support from Vishalji, from my family and the SKDC family, I did the performance in 2016 – a great learning experience that I enjoyed greatly.

Everytime I watch an excellent choreography by our dear Guru executed well by the SKDC students, I feel proud to be part of this family. I hope to see our Guru and SKDC continue to provide its great service in the bay area community for many more years to come, passing on the great art form and the values to the next generation.