Martha Graham said,
“People have asked me why I chose to be a dancer. I did not choose. I was chosen to be a dancer, and with that, you live all your life.”
In our #WednesdayWisdom blog focusing on the #WonderWomen segment, on the occasion of World Dance Day, we bring to you a woman who feels in the same passionate manner about dancing. Meet, Mathuvarshinee Sekar, an IT professional, a Bharatanatyam Teacher and performer, and a Macramé Artist. Besides doing a full-time job does a at an IT firm, Mathuvarshinee runs her own dance academy by the name of Nrityapravah and even sells her handcrafted macramé products through her Instagram page. How did she get into varied and creative fields and how does she manage time between these professions and her personal responsibilities? Let’s find out in her own words.
“I grew up in a progressive family. My father always encouraged me for pursuing dance, but his thinking was that I should complete my graduation and have an engineering degree before making a decision about choosing dance as a career.
That’s what led me into the IT field. But never did I ever give up on my love for dance. I completed my arangetram and my love towards dance as a form of art, and more so as a means to let out my inner self and forget all my worries, continued, as I learned more about the field. So, once I completed my training in Bharat Natyam by pursuing Master’s degree in Bharatanatyam, I couldn’t just give it up. Hence, I began teaching to the girls in my neighbourhood from a very young age.
My IT field and the current job landed me in Hyderabad, away from my family and hometown Chennai. And this has been the turning point in my life. It was the first time I was completely independent. Things were tough, but I’m glad I made this decision, as this is where three of the best and most important things happened, meeting my husband, starting my own dance academy and my love for macramé.
I was always a plant lover and loved having them in my living space. Having always lived in a rented space since I’d moved out, I never got complete freedom to experiment with plants in my home. So, after marriage when we bought our own apartment, the plant lover in me got a full rein. My balcony garden is my pride and love! When we had moved here, nobody had a plant or even any small pots or flowers in their galleries. But today, I see a few of them having beautiful plants outside, which I only take as meaning that I must have inspired or motivated them to do so! And let me tell you, this is just an out-of-the-world feeling. It was due to my love for plants that I took to macramé and handcrafting because I needed something to not only hold my plants but also to make sure they looked as beautiful as I could make it possible for them to.
Today, through this love for plants and macramé, I have been able to touch so many lives that it feels immensely gratifying. Each order for my handcrafted products that I successfully make and deliver, makes me proud and keeps me motivated to continue in this field. As for my dancing profession, after moving to Hyderabad, I did continue teaching. However, there was always this ambition of making it bigger and more real. That’s why, after establishing myself and once I was sure of my footing in Hyderabad, I took the plunge and started the Nrityapravah dance academy in July 2017.
My husband, whom I met as a colleague in my current job, has also been extremely supportive and motivating in all my choices, be it of dancing or related to my handcrafting. My other motivation is the satisfaction which I get when performing, teaching, creating and choreographing. This always keeps motivating me. Even my family has always been extremely encouraging and supportive. Plants too have made a very big difference for me in my life. They give me peace and they even strengthen and motivate me.
As a married woman, it is sometimes challenging to balance all this along with the household responsibilities, but I keep reminding myself that I love it all and that’s what gives me the strength to not to give up on any of it. The other challenge is facing and overcoming the orthodox thinking around the field of dance that ‘Girls belonging to a respectable family do not engage in such activities’. But I ignore these kinds of negative comments because I have my husband and my family’s full support and also because dance gives me more happiness than anything else. The future plan related to my handicrafts and macramé is to have my own store where products made by me are sold, whereas regarding my dancing, I just want to continue learning and teaching, and let that journey take me wherever possible!
My biggest learning in my professional and personal experiences has been that
“Things change in time, and so do people”
And also, one must
“Learn to accept a few things even though they’re not up to expectations. But at the same one must not give up and should continue to pursue their dreams no matter what.”
But most importantly, one has to,
“Learnt to do things on their own.”
To drop in a message to Mathuvarshinee, check out her amazing macramé and handcrafted products, and the pictures of her plants, follow the links below:
Mathuvarshinee’s work as dance performer and teacher has been featured on Life of Tamizh. You can have a look at this feature through the link below:
Other personal and professional social media handles
You can check out Mathuvarshinee various solo and group dance performances through the links below:
- Krishna Nee Begane
- Tum Tak
- Musical Tribute to Sri Indradeo
- Duet performance by Mathuvarshinee and Soumya
- Re-d-f9 performance