Across the clutter of reality
shows currently on Indian Television, Terence Lewis remains one of the most renowned and recognized
judges of any show. If clothes are a reflection of one's personality, Terence
surely takes the cake for his creativity. Currently judging the third season of
India's most popular dance show on Zee Tv Dance India Dance Season 3, Master Terence Lewis has come a long way in his career. Today, he is
almost synonymous with the term - Contemporary Dance. He is internationally
trained and specializes in contemporary and neo-classical dance forms. Apart
from being a celebrity choreographer in a number of films and musicals, he also
has many international stage shows, Broadway Westend musicals, several popular
music videos and advertisements to his credit. He is the first Indian to receive
the prestigious Dance WEB Scholarship, representing India in Vienna, Austria.
Terence represented Asia at the International Choreographers' Meet at the TANZ
platform, Stuttgart, Germany and also taught Bollywood and Indian contemporary
dance at the Impulstanz Festival at Vienna, Austria.
Q. So how does it feel to be back on
DID season 3?
It's great to return on Dance India Dance with
Remo and Geeta. We three, along with the creative minds from Zee TV and the
production house (FRAMES Production Company) make a great team together. And the
output of our effort is out there for everybody to see. Since the time DID
Q. Shakti from Terence Ki Toli was the winner of DID
Season 2. Do you think history will repeat itself?
Ans. I have
hundred percent faith in my Toli. Each one of them have the potential to win the
Sunehri Taqdeer Ki Topi. Pradeep Gurung from Guwahati is a powerhouse of energy
and can master any form of dance in record time. Varun has his basics right and
is extremely hardworking. Sneha G is a surprise package, usually quiet but a
bombshell on stage. Piyali is a combination of good looks and talent, making her
a deadly opponent for any dancer. Every dancer in Terence Ki Toli is special
their own way and I am sure they will make me proud. And now I'm extremely
hopeful that Raghav- the Crockroaz will make an entry into the show through Wild
Card. Then there's Neerav Bavlecha, my assistant, who Mithun Da had kept as a
stand by contestant. If these two contestant make a comeback, we'll be the
strongest team and I can assure you, there's nothing that can stop Terence ki
Toli from winning.
Q. A lot of your students are today
choreographers on different shows... How do you feel?
Ans. I feel
so proud when I see my students exploring different avenues beyond a defined
confine. I have been influenced by many teachers who have taught me not to focus
on money or fame and this is what I tell my students too. Shakti is the only
student/ contestant who has kept in touch with me and promises to explore more
within the confines of dance. She has the looks and the grace which makes her a
world class performer. She was a part of a dance fiction show, which she
recently quit to pursue further studies in dance abroad.
you think people today want to learn everything quickly to achieve
Ans. The only grudge against the kids that come to learn
from me is that they do not love dance. They are here for the fame. If a film
comes in their way, they will leave dance. Dance is not their focus and that is
what hurts me the most. Today even parents have really become smart in this
case. And kids want to learn everything quickly. People want to reach the
finishing line but they do not want to go through the process.
What is your dance philosophy?
Ans - One of my students said
that the way I dance... it's only the dance that remains and the dancer is not
around. It's the Japanese equivalent of Satori, where you become one. That's how
I look at dance. It's a very amazing tool to connect with people. It's so
powerful that, without words, you can have an exchange. It uplifts my spirit and
connects me to my higher self. Having a classical dance background, it is
important to give a 'modern twist' to help generate interest among people in
reviving classical dance forms. If people go beyond the classical dance, keeping
its purity intact, and give it a new twist, it connects well with the audience
Q. How do you judge the
Ans. This is a dance show, not a masala potboiler
where emotions play a critical role. It is really irritating when people show
their weak side, etc. Everybody has their own troubles but that should never be
used as a means to get into a competition. I am human and feel sorry for their
condition but I am here to judge their dancing skills and not their emotional
quotient. Hence, if I feel that a contestant's dancing is not upto the mark, I
have no qualms in calling a spade a spade. My judgment is solely based on
technique, skill and justice to choreography.
Q. Are there any
Bollywood projects that you are concentrating on?
after doing the first two seasons of DID, I got many offers from big directors
but I did not do anything eventually. I don't do films. In fact, I don't enjoy
doing films. I don't want to teach an artist one... two... three... on the spot and
make him look like 'wow' with the help of camera angles and great costumes. I
really love dance and I want to see good dancing. So, if tomorrow somebody comes
and tells me, like the olden days, you have to set long shots and make an artist
dance with no cuts, no glitz and if it is someone like Hrithik Roshan, Madhuri
Dixit or Aishwarya Rai, I will do it.
Q, How has your life
changed after DID?
Ans. After 'Dance India Dance, the level has
become so high that whenever I see artists dancing on the sets I feel 'anybody
can do this'. I ask myself, am I doing this for money? I have to run my house?
No!!! I already have a company, I already have a business, I am working very
well, I don't need to do this for money. I'm doing this just for the love of
dance. I want to see good dance, I want to teach good choreography and I want to
popularize dance as an art form and I think we have managed that beautifully
through Dance India Dance. The DID journey so far has been one In cherish the
most. Season 3 was
offered to me. I have been involved with it completely because I consider DID as
my show and no show compares to it in terms of talent! Yes, I have been working
since the last 16 years, but it is the last three years of being a part of DID
that has brought me into the limelight. But at the same time, I cannot call it
my success, because success for me lies in the smallest things that I do. But
yes, DID has indeed given me fame and recognition beyond my wildest