For Amithi Tadigadapa ’23, dancing is not just a way to express herself, but also a way to tell different stories. The movement of her body across a dance floor or stage is not simply physical. Instead, Tadigadapa focuses on the ways in which she can create an engaging narrative.
“I think that… dance [is a form] of storytelling, and to be able to tell a story to its full capacity, there needs to be a need to understand and fully comprehend either what you’re trying to say, or be a vehicle for what somebody else is saying,” said Tadigadapa.
Tadigadapa first began dancing when she was three years old. Her family encouraged her to try participating in a sport, which prompted her interest in dance. She later tried a variety of other sports, such as gymnastics and basketball, but always went back to dance. According to Tadigadapa, trying new things, whether it be these sports or in a musical setting, has helped her to grow as a person.
“I kind of just stuck with it [dance] ever since. It became like a little family, like a home away
from home that I could kind of go to,” said Tadigadapa.
In addition to dancing, Tadigadapa has been playing the cello for 14 years. On campus, she is a part of the symphony orchestra and chamber orchestra, and has just begun working with a piano trio with the Chamber Music Society with Holly Barnes, Instructor in Music. According to Tadigadapa, her dedication to dance and music has helped her to adjust to new situations.
“Being exposed to different environments–as I got older, I got more exposure to different teachers who have different learning styles, and different ways that people expected me to play. So, I was able to adapt to different styles, different environments, [and] different needs for what someone wants for me,” said Tadigadapa.
According to Bella Murray ’23, a friend of Tadigadapa and a fellow dancer, Tadigadapa’s elegance is one of the most notable characteristics of her ballet dancing. To her, Tadigadapa makes dancing look almost effortless, as it has been a part of her life since the beginning.
“I think [Tadigadapa] has great movement quality. She’s able to make everything look so graceful and… really close together. It’s not like you can see that she’s trying… very effortless,” said Murray.
In addition to her physical talents, Tadigadapa has a special skill when it comes to choreography, from the way she learns new choreography quickly or makes up her own. This talent was demonstrated when she had to successfully learn an entire dance in less than one week for the fall show.
“There was some debacle with another dance group. But she learned it in less than a week and ballet is her forte so it was really nice…I think that she’s more sure of herself, especially as a choreographer since we have more time to make up our own dances,” said Murray.
Taking part in the dance programs at Andover, specifically in Andover Dance Group (ADG) and choreographing for the upcoming Dance Open, Tadigadapa feels supported by her fellow dancers at Andover, and often channels their love and encouragement while performing a solo.
“There’s been moments where you’re on stage by yourself and I think when in those moments, you harken back to the feeling of being in a community, being with other people who support you… there’s like 30 other people backstage cheering you on and supporting you all the way. So, just pulling off like a communal strength,” said Tadigadapa.