Nikita Thakrar is a British born Indian dance artist and teacher with an entrepreneurial ambition to inspire others through her own success and achievements.
Having barely left school, at the tender age of 18, Nikita began her journey following a passion for Indian dance and a ‘calling’ which took her to the sacred land of India. It is here where she spent the most amount of time training and turning her mind inwards, exploring herself and discovering her spirituality. It was during this reflective period that Nikita realised she was no normal girl of her age. She was on Earth for a reason, and her life’s mission from this point onwards would be to inspire the next generation and fulfil her purpose of existence.
Nikita’s Guru ‘Shila Mehta’, a renowned Indian dancer and teacher herself played a great role in training Nikita in the classical art form of Kathak, which she believes moulded her into the cultured individual she is today. It was through her Guru that she gained confidence to take dance as more than just a hobby, and continue to pursue her passion for the art form despite cultural restrictions.
After a gruelling two years of tirelessly working to save up for her frequent, self-funded trips to India, Nikita took the initiative step of starting the “Dancing Nikita Company”, an Indian dance company teaching, choreographing and performing classical Indian Kathak dance. Her aim – to develop a systematic training programme for the next generation of British Indians, to learn and study their cultural roots through Indian dance. It wasn’t long before she developed her own style of Kathak, which she labelled as ‘semi-classical dance’, which she today pioneers.
In 2008 Nikita was recognised for her dual achievements as an adept business woman and talented dancer by being shortlisted for both the ‘Asian Women of Achievement’ and ‘Asian Achievers’ awards. Later that year she was awarded the ‘Milapfest National Travelling Scholarship’ which funded a trip to India to further develop her skills as a dance performer and teacher. In 2009 Nikita was short listed for the 02 X award as ‘young entrepreneur of the year’.
In September 2011, Nikita achieved her biggest accomplishment yet. During the time of recession, Nikita took the ambitious step of launching her own dance studio dedicated to Indian culture. The studio would act as a base, where she would train teachers and students alike to learn and teach her style to carry it forward, along with a wealth of tradition and values.
Nikita recalls; “We got the keys for the property on the same day as the London riots started. There was people out there my age smashing car windows, committing crimes and I was about to start renovating a cultural arts centre! Less then a month later, (with lots of trips to Ikea) we launched, in front of students, parents, family and friends. The mayor of Slough being there made it very special. I remember thinking, this is it! My childhood dream came true. Just as I started to feel content about achieving a major goal, someone asked me ‘so Nikita, what’s next’? It was then that I realised, there’s no limit to ambition. I can go on opening new centres all over the country, and franchising, but what’s more important to me is that I touch the lives of those who I teach. Even if I can give a handful of my students something special which stays with them, and makes impact on their lives then I have achieved. That’s real success.”
Nikita is also a published poet and accomplished writer. In her spare time she enjoys going to the theatre and reading motivational books and attending personality development talks. She is currently writing a book based on her life experiences with plans to publish it. Her passion is to give talks to the youth about career decisions by publically speaking at cultural events, seminars and spiritual gatherings.