Harigopal M V

Today’s guest is coming all the way from Chennai, India,
and currently based in Berlin, Germany
the great Harigopal Mudalivakkam Vijayagopal,
or as people know him Hari_bachata

Talking about Hari,
it is talking about one of the top references in the German Bachata Scene,
particularly in Berlin.

A Social dancer,
a festival organizer
and adventurous traveller.
(Follow him on his traveller profile)

Discover his beginnings in bachata,
how bachata changed his life,
and his upcoming festivals in this interview below.

I found the love of my life in Bachata


Tell us about you

My name is Hari and people know me as Hari_Bachata.
My full name is difficult for people outside India but would like to mention
Harigopal Mudalivakkam Vijayagopal.

I am originally from Chennai, India 🇮🇳,
and currently living in Berlin, Germany🇩🇪.

I normally dance in the festivals sometimes something crazy,
like 4 festivals continuous in a row.

My favourite place to visit for dancing is Poland and Spain.
I work for a company called Alstom,
which manufactures Trains, Trams & Buses.

Dancing has become my passion and hobby in recent years.

Why did you decide to start dancing bachata?

After moving from India to Germany,
I was desperately looking for a Hobby and to make some new friends.

My favourite hobby before started dancing was Pub hopping,
one day I ended up at a party,
but it was not a normal pub they called it a Latin dance party,
and I had no idea what that meant at that point,
I never knew it would change my life differently.

When I went,
they started workshops 1hr Salsa and 1hr Bachata and I tried to do the basic steps in salsa I felt so awful the first time.

I started learning salsa but that day,
I decided to take it as a challenge to learn bachata
because I loved the music and something different which I never thought I would do in my life.

it combines my first hobby drinking and dancing so I thought it would be cool 2 hobbies in one

How long have you been dancing bachata?

I started dancing end of 2018,
and my first festival was Bachata Magic Prague Festival in 2019.

If you would have to define your bachata style in three words, which would be?

Sensual, Soft, Energetic

What do you appreciate/enjoy the most in a social dance?

Connection, Smile and Fun (playfulness)

How has bachata changed your life outside of the dance floor?

I would say bachata changed my life completely when I moved first time outside of India.
I was a little afraid of what I was going to do and how I would make friends.

Now I go to each country,
at least I have a minimum of 5 friends and in all European countries because of bachata.

It makes my life joyful, fun and adventurous with all these
different cultures,
and people so it makes me do something more in my life.

The main change is I found the love of my life in Bachata,
without that,
I am not sure where I would have ended up but I got my fiancé because of Bachata.

If I look back and my future,
all it is just running around Bachata:
my friends,
my fiancé,
mostly everything is from Bachata.

What would you change from the bachata social scene?

Okay, it is difficult to answer this question,
without making an argument.

So I would like to contribute to the community which gave me many things,
and I would mainly focus on improving the social dancing level.

Which is no show-offs,
just enjoy each other company,
and have fun,
nothing more to change if this happens

Which advice would you give to someone who is starting bachata?

Don’t be rude and don’t be shy.

Be polite and happy.

Learn proper basics,
and the technique
even if it takes a longer time.

It will help you to be a better dancer,
and make both leader and follower happy in socials.

Which professional couple/individuals inspire you the most?

I would say Korke & Judith inspire me a lot in learning
basics and
a new way of dancing.

one more crazy bachatero Masajose from Spain,
who inspires me a lot with new ideas, techniques
and different ways of dancing bachata like:
Bachatrio, Bachazouk etc
which makes it more interesting to learn new ways of dancing.

If you would have to choose one festival,
only one, which one would you choose?

In 2023 I would say sea sun salsa and,
for next year 2024,
I am looking forward to Bachata Geneva Festival, I missed it in 2023 unfortunately

What’s your favourite bachata song?

I cannot choose one song it is tough,
but my all-time favourite is Romeo Santos and Prince Royce.

With the new music producers,
I am really enjoying DJ Clau and DJ Dimension,
both my bros who have a great knowledge of music production

Where can people find you?

IG – Hari_bachata
IG – Xplosion_Event
Website – www.Xplosionevent.com
Regular classes and privates in Berlin.
Teaching and Guest dancer in events around Europe

Xplosion Hamburg Edition II on 19-21 Jan 2024 in Hamburg, Germany
Xplosion RITMO Berlin Bachata Festival on 17-19 May 2024 in Berlin, Germany

Who would you like the next person to go through these questions?

Daniel Jove and Masajose

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