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Yeh Ballet trailer: Grit, dreams, and dance collide in a very real life story

Directed by Sooni Taraporevala, the film will stream on Netflix from 21 February. 

Shriram Iyengar

Dreams can never be confined to small spaces, particularly when they are born there. Sooni Taraporevala's Yeh Ballet (2020) will finally begin streaming on Netflix from 21 February. The trailer for the original film captures the sense of ambition, dedication, and grit that accompanies an uplifting story. 

The trailer begins with a montage of the two dancers, Asif and Nishu, growing up in the lower middle class slums of Mumbai, but dreaming of being dancers. Their luck seems to turn with the arrival of Aaron Saul (Julian Sands), a famed ballet choreographer, to their Mumbai studio. But ballet is quite different from any other dance form.

The dedication, the courage, and the consistency it demands is quite the challenge for two young boys constantly fighting out society, oppression, the threat of poverty, and the class divide. "Dance is the only escape," says Saul at one point, and it proves to be in the end. 

The trailer has a Gully Boy (2019) vibe, but has a very different take on the style, standard, and form of dancing. It is also a rare Hindi film that explores the dance form of ballet, which has often been sacrilegiously ignored in Indian cinema. 

Taraporevala's film is based on the life of Manish Chauhan and Amiruddin Shah, two young boys who became the rare Indians to earn a scholarship to the prestigious Joffrey Ballet School in New York City. The director had earlier shot a short documentary with the same title, before it developed into a full-fledged film. 

Taraporevala wrote and directed the film, with Vijay Maurya, Danish Hussain, Jim Sarbh, Heeba Chadha, Manish Chauhan and Achintya Bose in key parts. 

The film, produced by Siddharth Roy Kapur, is set to stream on Netflix from 21 February. Watch the trailer below and let us know if you are keen to watch the film.

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