For a country obsessed with Bollywood, one can say it’s quite difficult for different genres of dance to make inroads in India. Indian classical dances are popular in the South, but for a dance form like ballet to catch on, we need to have a proper setup, good teachers and a commitment to excellence.
These are the very qualities entrepreneur Pratyusha Chhajer has brought to the fore with Samyan Shonaya Ballet Academy (SSBA), which she founded three years ago, to develop and train professional dancers.
Starting operations in Indore, SSBA became the first academy to introduce ballet to Central India. The academy has now moved its headquarters to Ahmedabad, an economic hub with great cultural diversity in the vibrant state of Gujarat.
Certification courses and classes are available for students who wish to excel in ballet dance. In view of the pandemic, classes are currently being conducted online on Zoom and Google Classroom. However, the academy is gearing up to resume offline certification courses soon.
Named after Pratyusha’s children Samyan and Shonaya, SSBA follows the Vaganova curriculum method of ballet. It is a style of ballet training created by Russian ballerina Agrippina Vaganova, who became a highly renowned ballet teacher and has authored the book Basic Principles of Classical Ballet.
This curriculum method is marked by a fusion of the classical French style (specifically elements from the romantic era), with the athleticism of the Italian method, combined with the soulful passion of Imperial Russian Ballet.
SSBA provides a strong professional academic program with focus on music, drama, dance, grace, fitness, nutritional diet, language, self-confidence and overall personality development, ensuring mental and physical health and balance in your life. It emphasizes on development of strength, flexibility and endurance.
The ballet academy serves as a mentorship platform to gifted children, teenagers, students with dreams, dedicated young dance professionals, securing a professional culture for dancers, teachers and dance directors. Gaining a reputation for excellence in performing arts, the academy is now at the vanguard of dance education and classical ballet training in India.
After Indore and Ahmedabad, SSBA plans to expand its branches to Mumbai, Delhi and other cities across the country.
About Pratyusha Chhajer
For the record, Pratusha Chhajer is an empathetic, versatile and multifaceted personality, with a great understanding of the influence of culture on creativity. She holds certificates in various arts including dance, photography and calligraphy.
Born in Indore, Pratusha has been part of the administrative team at Abhivyakti (a non-profit organization under the Dainik Bhaskar Group), and has helped organize and conduct many Indian cultural dance shows, business events, social events, educational events and charity fundraisers.
She has been recognized for her exemplary organizational work for fashion shows conducted by the International Institute of Fashion Design (INIFD) and Khadi Gram Udyog.
She is the founder and director of Samyan Shonaya Ballet Academy, and also a renowned fashion designer with her own label Samyan Shonaya Haute Couture; businesses under the brand name of Samyan Shonaya Group of Companies.