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Peacock Plume preview: Dancing her way to glory despite serious odds

The documentary on the life and struggle with cancer of Indian classical dancer Shubhada Varadkar is inspiring.

Keyur Seta

Peacock Plume is a documentary that looks at the inspiring journey of Indian classical dancer Shubhada Varadkar against great odds.

Classical dance was always a passion for Varadkar and she got the opportunity to turn her passion into her profession. After undergoing rigorous training, she went on to become a well-known dancer, performing not just in India, but also abroad.

Life was quite hunky-dory. Then Varadkar received a couple of cruel blows. The first landed when her husband, without warning, left her and his worldly life and migrated to London to practise spirituality. Varadkar was stunned. It took her a while to gather herself and divorce him.

The second blow was far more serious: Varadkar was diagnosed with cancer. A passionate artiste for whom dance was everything, she now faced the very real risk of not being able to go up on stage again. Varadkar was shattered.

The film tracks how, despite the illness, despite the rigours of chemotherapy and the subsequent hair loss, Varadkar eventually stood on her feet and even performed on stage again. Along with her strong will, her parents’ support proved to be a real blessing. 

Along with this inspiring life story, Peacock Plume has a good amount of footage of Varadkar’s brilliant performances.

Peacock Plume will be screened at the Open Frame Film Festival 2018 at the India International Centre, New Delhi, on 16 September at 7:30 pm.


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Open Frame Film Festival