This short video features interviews with a few members of the Bangalore-based queer dance group, The Pink Divas, as well as footage from rehearsals and performances. In these interviews, the dancers identify the various systems of conformity that they are trying to push against through performance. They touch on femme-phobia in the gay community, the emotional binds of masculinity, and body-consciousness on stage. We find out that Madhuri and Sridevi are not the only divas for these dancers, but that the heroines of padams and the queer men they see flaunting their bodies on stage, are also role models.
Since their first performance at the Bangalore Queer Pride Mela in November 2011, The Pink Divas have taken the stage at the Queer Campus Carnival and the Queer Film Festival every year since. The group has, in the past, included cisgender women, and its membership shifts from year to year given dancers’ availability. While the group members take up political concerns such as the criminalisation of sodomy in their performances, their rehearsals and performances serve other activist ends as well. They work to change dominant understandings of gender by performing in drag or gender-bending attire, and they create a sense of community and family through the sweat and toil of rehearsals.
Meet… The Pink Divas.