In a previous avatar Neelam Singh was a tech writer. Then she discovered belly-dancing. It became a passion like none other – exhilarating, liberating and a true calling.
A different beat
With her short hair and no-nonsense style Neelam Singh doesn’t look too different from any efficient career girl. You can easily picture her in a corporate office setting. And yet, behind that everyday demeanour is an unbridled artiste who finds ecstasy when she begins to dance.
Neelam started her working career as a tech writer for major brands and did that for several years. Alongside she had always kept her love of dancing well nourished. “I had always loved dancing. It was more than a mere hobby or pastime for me,” says Neelam, who pursued dance through school and college.
“But my dancing took a whole new direction and so did my life,” she says. The life-altering moment came when Neelam was introduced to belly-dancing. “It was a feeling like none other,” she says. The pull was so strong that Neelam decided to quit her job and pursue belly-dancing with an intensity that only the truly passionate can summon. “I wanted to delve deeper, packed my bags and went to Egypt, the home of belly-dancing,” she says. There, Neelam spent three months dedicated entirely to studying the art form. “I felt it was a calling and it connected me to the universe,” she says with conviction.
Turning a passion into a pay check
“When I returned with my experience and expertise, I wanted to share the sheer joy of belly-dancing with more people,” Neelam says. So, she went on to start her own dance studio and to teach belly-dancing. To her, it was not merely a question of teaching people the moves. It was a way in which women could learn to love their bodies and themselves, often difficult to achieve on account of all the taboos and social constraints we are surrounded by. The dance studio took off in a big way and was soon a successful business. The challenge that Neelam faced next was how to run the business and not lose her connection with the thing that had inspired it all in the first place: her love of dancing.
Neelam’s desire for self-expression now also embraces the audio-visual medium. “It’s something that has always fascinated me,” says Neelam who is now an independent filmmaker. While she makes films for the corporate world and for brands across genres, she also makes short films with a message and a recent one on preventing child abuse has received an excellent reception.“I achieve a certain peace when I am writing a script or thinking of one,” she says. “And a feature film is next in line.”
The joy of dancing
Artistic and creative, belly-dancing is never far from Neelam’s imagination and she’s always ready to enjoy its freeing, exhilarating pleasures. “I’m forever seeking that point of convergence for my various passions,” she says. For this passionate dancer, it cannot be that far away a goal. For she believes, “If you haven’t found it, keep looking. It will come to you.”
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