My first dance tour – Aakanksha Rawat

I have been a dance apprentice of Sonia Sabri Company for the last few years and in 2019 I received the amazing opportunity of being invited to take part in my first ever professional dance show, “Same Same … But Different”. This show allowed me to take my love of performance to the next level and I am ever so grateful for that. I was buzzing with excitement for my first ever dance tour. 

The show began touring in Autumn 2019 and I got to travel across the country. It was a very exciting experience for me, travelling in a minibus going from one venue to another and staying in different cities. Every day was a unique experience, some days we had two performances at the same venue and other days we would travel straight after the show to the next venue. We got to travel around the country including London, Bath, Cumbria and Wolverhampton and because of this tour I got to explore some beautiful places which I may not have otherwise visited. 

Performing for different audiences and receiving such warm reactions from them was very touching and overwhelming. As a performer it was very satisfying and encouraging for me to see the immediate reaction of the audience during the audience participation section. 

Along with the shows, we also led some workshops during this tour. It was very interesting to display the three different dance styles of Kathak, Contemporary Dance and Street Dance in the workshops, especially in more rural areas as many of the children were not familiar with Kathak as a dance style. Even though it was their first introduction to Kathak dance, they were all very keen and enthusiastic to learn what I had to share. It was an absolute pleasure and honour to share some of my Kathak vocabulary with all the participants and help spread some awareness of this beautiful art. 

On the tour I have learnt more about what goes on behind the scenes for a show and it has helped me recognise how much hard work and effort goes in to making a production which merely as an audience one may not be aware of.

I enjoyed being involved in creating the show from scratch, managing the team and combining our different personalities and individuality into one show. 

Every day we had a specific time for the team to leave for the venue to allow enough time for technical runs, implement notes from previous shows and allow ourselves sufficient time for warm up. Also working with a team of professional artists gave me a wonderful opportunity to learn from my fellow colleagues’ experiences.  

I thoroughly enjoyed every aspect of this journey and am very grateful to my teacher Sonia Sabri and Sonia Sabri Company for providing me with this brilliant opportunity and I am looking forward to the Spring 2020 tour which begins in February!

For more information on where you can catch the colourful and fun family show “Same Same … But Different” please take a look at the calendar section of our website. 

Photo credit: Simon Richardson