Bollywood in Chicago: Ameya Performing Arts

ByJayme Nicholas Localish logo
Friday, May 31, 2024
Bollywood in Chicago: Ameya Performing Arts
Doctors, teachers, and professionals in their personal lives, Amaya Performing Arts' members are united in their love of Indian dance and culture.

CHICAGO -- Ameya Performing Arts is a Bollywood dance company founded by seven Indian women in 2016.

The word "Ameya" means boundless, and this 22-member dance company blends classical and modern styles of dance to create pieces that celebrate movement, the Indian culture and the boundless spirit of the women who celebrate Indian dance tradition. Ameya Performing Arts represents working women, many of whom are moms, from a variety of professions, including medicine, education and marketing. Each week they rehearse, taking time from busy schedules to find the freedom in dancing together while also supporting each other.

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When Finance Director Sneha Gill talks about the feeling she gets dancing in this company, she says, "Indescribable. The noise is off, and you're able to be present. Everything else just melts away."

Many of them also are daughters of Indian parents who left their homeland to come to the United States. The shared experience of the immigrant family, as well as other themes like "female empowerment," is expressed in different showcases performed each year for the public.

Currently, the group features a trio of sisters who have all ended up in Chicago and dance in Ameya. They talk about dancing together since they were little girls and joke about how their mother was the backstage helper while their dad oversaw ironing their 25 different costumes.

Dr. Ronak Patel sums up the essence of Ameya Performing Arts: "It's about expressing ourselves from a creative standpoint, but also being part of this wonderful community of women who are all joining forces to create something beautiful."