October 5, 2010
Bollywood is the informal term used for the Hindi-based film industry based in India. Bollywood is the largest film producer in India and is one of the largest centers of film production in the world. Bollywood films almost always have a series of songs and dances that sets it apart from industries like Hollywood. Bollywood dancing is a critical part of Indian film and culture and has changed in a number of ways throughout the years.
Bollywood dancing is primarily based off of Indian dance styles such as classical, historic regional styles, or folk dances. However, in recent years there has been a twist added from Westernized dance styles. Before the 1960s, the primary source of dance was drawn from classical and folks styles. In South India, a lot of the influence came from Kuchipudi and Bharatanatyam and in North India the main draw came from Kathak. While these styles are still drawn upon in Bollywood dancing today, often times they are mixed together with other styles and cannot be linked back to its origins.
Another aspect of Bollywood dancing that has changed throughout the years is the costume that is worn by the actors and actresses. In the early years of Bollywood, women were generally dressed in traditional Indian clothing such as a sari or salwar kameez (a pant-suit). However, as Bollywood has become more modernized, so has the clothing that is worn in the dance numbers. In early years, the main female character would often show a scandalous side by wearing a white sari under a waterfall, making it somewhat see-through, but still covering most of the body. However, the costumes have increasingly become more scandalous leading to the lead women wearing shorts showing off the actresses’ legs and tops revealing midriff and cleavage.
Also, in Bollywood films, it was common for there to be many numbers that take place between the hero and heroine. Early on, the hero and heroine...