Dance has been rooted in our culture for centuries, both as a means of expression and in modern times, as a way to stay fit. However, it also has the potential to play a therapeutic role, as Pragyan Behera, a dance therapist made the students of SCMC realize during a lecture demonstration held on June 20.
What a lot of people thought would be the same, rather mundane event as lecture demonstrations tend to be, soon turned out to be completely different. Ms. Behera started by stating that her being on stage didn’t mean what it usually does; it would be a free space for people to dance their hearts out and also be able to realize what it made them feel. There was no performance, no lecturing, just the freedom to be yourself for the duration of the event.
Starting off, she put on a playlist of upbeat music to get the crowd moving. While it did take some prodding, the auditorium was soon a space full of carefree individuals, dancing away to the beats, without worrying about getting judged. And despite a lot of skepticism, dance, as a means of therapy, was actually helping.
Several individuals from the Audience garnered the courage, and felt it safe to be able to speak about what they were thinking, and how they were coping, given that most of them were away from home for the first time. Ms. Pragyan said, “It’s important to be aware about what you’re feeling and be okay with it.” It certainly has the power to get people talking and exposing their vulnerabilities in front of a group of strangers and make you feel better at the end of it. Dance therapy should ideally be incorporated in educational and professional spaces to help individuals stay mentally healthy.