Bollywood Belles

Blog post by Sophie Backhouse, Campaigns Officer


This month our Bankside home was transformed into a Bollywood stage set for one night only. All it took was some beautiful sari fabric and some (not-so)sticky tape, a great Bollywood soundtrack, some delicious treats on the snack table, a gaggle of enthusiastic Belles and a brilliant (and patient) dance instructor – the wonderful Natasha from Absolute Bollywood.

Once we’d carb-loaded on Sarah’s delicious ginger cake and hydrated with a few cups of chai, Natasha split us into three lines and set about teaching us some Bollywood dance steps choreographed to ‘Nagada Sang Dhol’ a song from a very popular Bollywood Film, Goliyon Ki Rasleela Ram-Leela. The film is a modern adaptation of Romeo and Juliet and the dance performed to this song is a traditional Gujarati garba dance, in which the heroine of the film, played by Deepika Padukone, meets her hero for the first time. In the film the dance is a very energetic number and its reported Deepika sustained serious bruises and swelling to her feet to learn the routine. Watch the video below and see how the experts do it!

It’s safe to say that Natasha had an inkling that the Belles, as talented as we all are, might not be quite up to that routine just yet and so kindly taught us a few of the more manageable (for most of us at least) moves, including some of the common hand poses. Perhaps our favourite being the bee – it is our mascot after all.

After many practice rounds with all the missed cues, arms thwacking neighbours and giggles you might expect, Natasha said we were ready to perform the whole dance and RECORD it! So here it is – the Borough Belles first Bollywood performance in all its glory, enjoy!

Ok…so we might not be quite as graceful, in time, or energetic as the real thing, but the smiles and laughter are testament to a great night, learning a new skill, getting some exercise and dancing with abandon. To all our guests and new members it was lovely to meet so many new faces and we hope we didn’t put you off with our dubious dance moves – we look forward to welcoming you along again next time.

As an aside, we also voted for a charity that the money from our bi-monthly raffles will go towards supporting this year. On the shortlist were Women For Refugee Women, Dimbleby Cancer Care and Choir With No Name. We’re pleased to let you know that the winner was Women for Refugee Women and that money from our first raffle of the year, next month, will go towards supporting their excellent and vital work.

As a further aside, we did great work collecting for the local Waterloo Foodbank this month but we’d like to see if we can do even better next month, whilst also collecting for the Homeless Period, an initiative that seeks to make sanitary products freely available at homeless shelters. If you can, bring something from the food bank list or some additional sanitary products to next month’s meeting and we’ll make sure they get to people who really need them. Thank you!

More info on the Homeless Period initiative here:
Info on what our local food bank is in desperate need of can be found here: