Divya Maiya gives us a peek into the world of South Asian dance. She is the co-founder of the South Asian Arts and Theater House — SAATH — based in Minneapolis, MN.
More than Bollywood and Bhangra, she looks at the communities touched by South Asian dance. And, she talks about breaking stereotypes, appreciating cultural traditions and the motivation for her own #SareeAdventures.
Divya Maiya looks at how dance can be a fun way to build community across and beyond the South Asian diaspora.
What You’ll Learn:
- About the Roots of Various of South Asian Dances
- How Dance Can Tell the History and Culture of a People
- How Dance Can Build a Diverse Community among the South Asian Diaspora
About the Guest:
Divya Maiya is a saree adventurer and co-founder of SAATH, the South Asian Arts and Theater House in Minneapolis, Minnesota.
New to town, she originally sought dance as a way to meet people. Today, SAATH is home to a diverse arts community. It includes, Asian and non-Asian dancers who come together for performances and informal classes. Most of all, it offers a fun way to connect to the cultural roots of South Asian arts and the people who share a passion for it.
SAATH is a 501c3 non-profit organization that celebrates “cultural diversity and social harmony in our communities through the joyful medium of dance, performing arts, and related South Asian cultural traditions.”
Divya Maiya also serves as the President, Executive Director and Artistic Director of SAATH (formerly named Bollywood Dance Scene). She is a techie and social media influencer who has a passion for travel and photography.
Links Related to Episode:
Timestamped Show Notes:
02:15 – Defining South Asian Dance
04:43 – Building Bridges with the Arts
05:26 – Influence of African Culture on South Asian Dance
06:24 – Dance and Cultural Exchange among South Asian Diaspora
08:07 – Listening to the Stories People Groups Tell
09:03 – What is South Asian Dance in American?
10:26 – Community, Culture and History
14:31 – Challenging Stereotypes
15:49 – #SareeAdventures
18:41 – What about the Second Generation?
19:34 – Art and Social Issues
20:29 – Despite the Haters
20:44 – Forming Community from a Small Group
22:27 – Not Just a Bollywood Dance Scene
23:21 – What about Cultural Appropriation?
25:04 – Creating Community Where You Are
29:39 – Getting in Touch with SAATH
30:34 – Family and Joke Ahead