Daughter of anganwadi teacher and hospital ward boy, Siddhi Tambe to represent India at World Breaking Championships
Meet India's first Breakdancing National Champion Siddhi Tambe aka BarB.
The Breakdance Federation of India (BFI) under the aegis of the All Indian DanceSport Federation (AIDSF) conducted the country's first-ever breakdancing national tournament last month. While B-Boy Wildchild aka Eshwar Tiwari clinched the men's title, B-Girl BarB aka Siddhi Tambe was crowned the women's national champion then.
The duo along with silver medallists B-Boy Flying Machine and B-Girl Jo will now be seen representing India at the World Breaking Championships in Paris next month on 4th December 2021.
Having just cleared her grade 12th board examinations B-Girl BarB cannot really hide her excitement while talking about the golden opportunity which has come her way out of nowhere.
"It feels quite surreal to think that I was crowned the first Breaking national champion. The fact that I will get to represent India at a global level makes it even more special," BarB exclaims to The Bridge.
Having started with Bollywood dance form when she was just 10, Siddhi Tambe got into breakdance by the time she was 12, thanks to her instructor.
"I started dancing when I was around 10-year-old. I was mainly into Bollywood dancing but was then introduced to breaking by my instructor there. Without my crew there, I would not have been able to excel this much in breaking," she states.
In fact, she was given her stage name B-Girl BarB by her crewmates.
"I have been with the 3D crew since I started dancing. They have been my biggest supporters. I used to go by the name B-Girl Sid earlier. People used to be confused about my gender due to this and it was my crewmates who named me BarB," Siddhi laughs.
Coming from a lower-middle-class family, Tambe stresses that her mother has been her pillar of strength throughout her dancing career and that her father has finally started to understand what she does is quite a big deal.
"My mother teaches in an Anganwadi, while my father is a ward boy in a hospital. Ever since I started dancing my mother has always supported me. My father, on the other hand, does not like dancing and everything but he never restricted me from it. Only after my win in the nationals and qualification to the World Championships has he realised that what I am doing is quite a big deal," BarB chuckles.
Having made it to the World Championships, Siddhi now has her eyes set on her giving her best shot on the day of the competition in Paris.
"This will be the first time that I am travelling aboard for a competition. I just want to give my best there. There is certainly quite a big gap between Indian breakdancers and the ones in foreign. I usually train for four hours a day and recently took my covid-19 vaccine. So yes, I believe I am shaping up well for Paris," states a confident Tambe.
The youngster believes the inclusion of breakdance into the Olympics has certainly given the art form a much-needed boost in India.
"There has been an increase in following since the Olympics inclusion was announced. Earlier it was mainly underground, now there are more and more people who want to know more about it. This is a very good sign and I feel by the time Paris Olympics arrives, breaking will be a lot more mainstream."