Imagine a bunch of youngsters wearing eye-catching, neon costumes while moving their bodies in the most artistic way possible, that too with the tunes of your favourite Bollywood songs. Sounds cool, right?
This is a reference to Alifia Dance Squad's dance performance at the Epshita and Nazakat Fashion Iconic Show that took place on 21 November.
The performance was one of the originals of Alifia Squad's where the entire arrangement including the song's remix, dance choreography and costume design was done by the team.
The energetic moves of Bollyhop (fusion of Bollywood and Hip-hop), the symmetrical synchronisation and the performance delivered by the team were immensely loved by the audience.
Alifia Squad' is a Bangladesh-based professional dance crew that specialises in global dance style, mostly Bollywood, hip-hop, jazz and contemporary.
The team has recently received overwhelming responses from the viewers and their videos have been ruling the internet for a while.
Moreover, the team knows its way to winning the crowd's heart with their fusion choreography of different dance forms.
With a dream to take modern dance forms to newer heights in the country, Alifia Squad started its journey in 2021.
The dream is to embrace state of the art dance forms, push their limits and compete with the world. Alifia Squad's dream exhibits a paradigm shift in the dance community in our country.
Dance, being an artform, is a fluid concept and free from boundaries. There are thousands of different dance forms around the world and most of these are strictly local, and are only performed by a specific group of people from a particular area. But some dance styles have successfully invaded regional borders.
For instance, breakdancing, also known as B-boying or breaking, is a street-style dance that is highly popular among the youth in the US and other parts of the world.
This dance form primarily originated among the African-American and Puerto Rican youth.
Salsa, Jazz, Afro, Contemporary, Hip-hop, Bollywood, Afro and Ballet are some other popular and frequently performed global dance styles.
Being the next-door neighbour, many Indian originated dance forms, such as Bharatanatyam, Kathak, Odissi, etc, are diversely prevalent in Bangladesh but the practice of global dance styles in this country is a bleak chapter.
Bangladesh lags far behind in adopting these dance forms due to institutional crisis and social stigmas.
Alifia Squad aims to make room for global dance form in the country by introducing it and giving an opportunity to learn it professionally.
Mofassal Al Alif, the founder and the trainer of Alifia Squad, believes that he was born a dancer. He has had a dream of taking dancing to another level ever since he was a little boy.
"I always knew that I wanted to become a dancer and performer. Living in Mymensingh, I had the luck to enjoy Jatrapala and the moves of Jatrapala dancing never failed to amaze me," shared Alif.
After completing his studies from Jahangirnagar University, Alif knew from heart that this was the right time to pursue dance dedicatedly.
He got himself admitted into a two-year dance program under Terrence Lewis Training Institute in Mumbai and specialised in Aerial Silk Act, High Heels Dance, Yoga, etc.
After completing the courses and polishing his skills, Alif returned to Bangladesh in the first half of 2020 amid the global pandemic.
Alif's homecoming chapter is glorified with his debut as a dance instructor. He established his first dance school named 'Alifia Dance Atelier' in 2020.
Consequently, in June 2021, Alif established a new dance academy named 'Alifia Squad' consisting of some of his best students.
Now, Alif is a performer, a trainer and a freelance choreographer. He and his team choreograph different stage shows, music videos and films.
At present, Alifia Squad has six consistent performers. They are recruited under a one-year scholarship program where they will be trained by Alif.
"The training my squad members undergo isn't an easy one. With the regular class on the weekend, they have to submit weekly assignments online. The diet they follow is balanced and strictly maintained. Initially we had 10 members but four of them couldn't keep up with the team's pace," Alif told the correspondent.
Some of the members are now junior trainers of Alifia Dance Atelier and choreographers as well.
Sumaitah Tasfia Rutba, a core member of Alifia Squad, shared, "I was a student of Bangladesh Academy Of Fine Art till 2020. During the pandemic, I got to know about Alifia Dance Atelier and got enrolled there."
Rutba is a student of class nine at Milestone School. She is a champion in terms of balancing study and dance.
"It's not easy to strike that perfect balance. Life becomes hectic when I have to attend exams and stage shows at the same time. But at the end of the day, my success makes my struggles worthwhile," she said.