What do you do when you are bored of OTT and there’s nowhere to go because there is a raging pandemic outside. You learn a new trick. Cyber space is buzzing with online classes that promise to make you adept at everything, from whipping up an exotic dish to stirring up a lip-smacking cocktail or mocktail, to picking a few intricate dance moves, and even master a not-so-common workout regime.
Delhi-based Mohit Thapa is a choreographer and a dance teacher. He tells IANS that he never thought that dance could be taught online. Thapa teaches jazz and Bollywood dance forms, and he admits it is tough to make people understand body coordination over a screen and yet many want to attend these online sessions.
“Although it is tough to make people understand body coordination, over time it has improved. Some students just want to attend the classes to have fun and learn easy moves, while some are dancers in training, who want to keep their knowledge up to date,” Thapa said.
Going out and partying with friends seems bleak given the current scenario. However, homegrown liquor enthusiasts like Puru Agarrwal have come out to help partygoers through online cocktail sessions.
“If you ask me personally, it’s been a blessing in a way. First the risk of going out (is not there), and second (there is) more cleanliness. I use basic home ingredients for cocktails that are fresh. Lastly, people have started enjoying learning and making cocktails from the comfort of their home. Everyone is happy by the end!” Agarrwal said.
Music live sessions are another area that have a growing demand. Rohit Manchanda of Houze of Gigs says his sessions get many together digitally.
“Technology has changed music and fans of today look to connect with musicians on a personal level, in addition to a musical one on a variety of platforms. The ability of artistes who can do both plays a significant part in their success,” Manchanda said.
He added: “It feels like a treasure stumbling upon a potential next great star, which makes listeners today feel like part of the discovery process, which in its own way has also shaped the global music market.”
Homegrown chefs have also made it to the forefront thanks to the web space during lockdown. Manu Mahalwar is one such name who discovered his passion for cooking amid the pandemic last year and is now teaching foodies over Instagram.
“The whole idea and inspiration came due to lockdown. I have been experimental with my recipes before just as I am now. Even a small interaction or fun food activity breaks the monotony (amid isolation). The best part about live sessions is the interaction with followers,” he said.
Staying indoors and an absolute disconnect with nature has an adverse effect on mental and physical health. Workout, Zumba and yoga sessions, too, have gone online courtesy Zoom videos and Instagram.
“Times are changing, so are our needs. With the pandemic around, everyone realises how important it is for us to stay on top of our mental and physical health. When everything is available online these days, you get the luxury of staying home and staying safe at the same time. Healthy body leads to a healthy mind,” says Jasbir Singh, fitness professional.
Musicians Marvin Gaye and Tammi Terrell’s words in the song “Ain’t no mountain high enough” would seem like an apt fit here: “If you need me, call me, no matter where you are, no matter how far”. Online gurus catering to the demands of their wards would sure vouch for the lines.