This Odisha-born Zumba instructor just made foreigners dance to a popular Odia song!

Bhubaneswar: Anupam Nayak aka ‘Anupam Z Choreographer’ is a Odia lad and Zumba instructer, based in the USA, who has been seamlessly infusing popular Odia numbers and folk songs into his dance routines and choreographing fun workout sessions for the past two years.

He released one such video where his class is seen dancing to the peppy version of the popular Odia song ‘Mana Udi Jaaye Re‘, released by Odisha’s no.1 private FM station, Radio Choklate 104 FM on the occasion of Holi this year.

About 50 women of mixed nationalities danced to the beats of this song doing Zumba and Ollywood style steps, along with two differently-abled individuals, Stevie and Lory.

Speaking exclusively to Odisha Sun Times, Anupam said,”We practised for a couple of hours before shooting this dance sequence. I am on a mission to propagate Odia culture here in the States and also among the youngsters in Odisha. Odia culture is a treasure trove of music and dance and instead of working with our art forms, we are incorporating foreign elements that ruin the essence of it all.”

Anupam is known to have hogged headlines for making the Yankees workout to Odia folk beats. It started with dance routines on ‘Jai Phoola’, which he followed up with another popular Sambalpuri number ‘Sagada Gadi’ and Odia song ‘Dāmerā Rābidelā Lo’. His efforts to popularise Odia music also saw him release an Odia music video ‘Halijayee America’ in September last year. This video, which also features his wife Amrita Ray, has garnered almost 318K views on YouTube. He also made an Odia music video titled ‘Toka Mu Odia’, that tells the story of every Odia, struggling to make a mark abroad and missing home, which has received 126K views on YouTube.

“My instructor Carla and other foreign students get super excited when we prepare for dance sessions on Odia songs. They know about Ratha Jatra and other aspects of Odia culture. I am thankful to Radio Choklate for working on newer versions of popular Odia songs and keeping the rich folk culture of Odisha alive,” said Anupam, who is based in Connecticut.

Anupam (far right) with his Zumba dancers

Radio Choklate’s version of this song has amassed 1.3 million views on YouTube and has been sung by Ollywood singer Jasaswini on the lyrics penned by Jatindra Pradhan. Biswaswarup has composed the music, with sound mixing by Smruti Ranjan Samal under the creative supervision of RJ Sangram.

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