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Body Percussion – A new dance art form enthralls Indian audiences…

Mastering the craft over the last 7 years, Bharat Verma is India’s first body percussionist and an internationally acclaimed choreographer. He is also the Founder and Director of Heartbeators Dance Studio.. Bharat recently performed in the third season of The Voice India – AR Rahman’s reality talent competition. The Star Plus production saw Bharat and his cousin Jai, a popular jodi known as “Jai-Bharat” give a scintillating performance to the combination of percussion and vocals. The 1st show which was aired on the 16th of February 2019 was an event that would go down in history books. Bharat’s performance gained such admiration that coach Adnan Sami attempted body percussion while AR Raman played the piano. It was at that moment that India witnessed its first body percussionist.

Bharat Verma

Body percussion is a South African native form of musical communication used by slaves to pass messages to each other through a combination of bodily vibrations including stomps and slaps. Giving this communication a twist, Bharat has ingeniously created a distinctive style of body percussion using Indian rhythm. Despite not gaining popularity in the early days of performing body percussion, Bharat went on to beat all odds. His perseverance and dedication to his craft have been instrumental in pushing him to the limelight. Bharat recently represented India and performed for 2000 students from across the globe in the 2018 Youth Assembly organized by the United Nations Friendship Ambassador Organisation, in their headquarters in New York. In addition, he has also received tremendous acclaim having worked with established names of the Indian film industry viz. Nikkhil Advani and Farhan Akhtar for their movie Lucknow Central. Apart from choreographing for the movie’s actors including Farhan Akhtar, Deepak Dobriyal &  Gippi Grewal. Bharat has also given his body music for one of the songs in Ek Kabootar.

Bharat Verma & Deepak Dobriyal

A multi-talented artist, Bharat has established the Heartbeators Dance and Fitness Studio to impart his learnings in body percussion, and other dance forms in Udaipur and in Powai, Mumbai. A group of his students are trained in body percussion specifically and along with Bharat give performances around India. He also conducts workshops on this unique form in India as well as other countries regularly. Since the inception of his unique dance studio, Bharat has taught over 50,000 students across India and abroad specializing in various Sangeet events. He is increasingly gaining popularity as a master choreographer for weddings as well.  During one of this time in early 2000’s Big Medicine Charitable Trust (B.M.C.T) introduced Bharat to Vanaver Caravan, a music company that performs contemporary and core percussive dance. They had come to Udaipur to perform body percussion. This group invited him to come to USA to take workshops and train the students there. Since then Bharat travels to USA every year and takes up dance workshops in Body percussion and other Indian dance forms.

Bharat didn’t get much support from his family to pursue his passion. Born in a lower middle-class family, his father is a driver to an IAS officer from the Rajasthan government. Bharat never received any support or admiration from his close ones in his artistic pursuit. He was rather expected to become an officer. However, Bharat’s tunnel-vision backed with unwavering desire was apparent since adolescence as he began his career at the age of 13 in Udaipur. His philosophy has always been that “Life isn’t about waiting for the storm to pass; it’s about learning to dance in the rain”.

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