Reena's Journal

'Be a Bollywood Star' the advert read. Sensible, safe (Scottish) Reena thought 'aye, right', whilst the old Reena - the Bollywood dancer - ensured she was heard by a twitch of the foot and a pang in the heart. I dismissed those four words to the back of my mind... until a senior member of the family died. A well standing, pillar of the community who in a short time of meeting him inspired me amongst others. His legacy allowed me to retrieve those four words and think of another four: 'life is too short'.

On gut instinct I signed up to audition. Urgh! I despised the word 'audition' - it conjured up that audition scene from Flashdance... four stern judges... judging... and being all, well, judgemental! Lol, the thought made me sick to my stomach. I was nervous, panicked and admittedly scared of embarrassing myself on the day. I had gained weight since I last danced - who would take me seriously? One person who did was my ever supportive husband Raj, who stopped me from chickening out the audition. I signed up for the last audition slot so that I would know relatively quickly if I didn't make it through - damage limitation I called it.
The one thing I failed to think about was what would happen if I actually enjoyed the process. That is exactly what happened.

The judging panel made us all feel relaxed and allowed us to be ourselves. Learning a routine was like my body craved to dance again, and I was able to let myself go and forget how big or unfit I was. I was just Reena, the dancer. I genuinely felt like I had been imprisoned for years and someone had accidently left the cell door open. I felt free. As well being exhausted, in contrast, I also felt re-energized after the audition, and I was rewarded with the amazing opportunity to be a part of Ooh La La it's Bollywood!

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