History makes the person. The past, whether traumatic or painful, happy or serene undeniably shapes and molds an individual. In some cases, it also shapes the road that is taken, the choices made and the person an individual chooses to become. Some incidents alter, some cement but all of it is part of the bigger plan the universe has for someone.
Sudha Chandran was set on the road to her destiny by an unfortunate occurrence. But it is that very incident that makes her who she is, makes her a force to be reckoned with and a subject that inspires awe and respect. The art makes the artist, but so does his/her story, the journey they took and the hardships they overcame.
Sudha Chandran, the woman who dances on the Jaipur Foot was born in Fall, September 21st, 1964 in Kannur, Kerala to a Tamil family. Her family originally comes from Vayaloor, Tiruchirapalli, Tamil Nadu but migrated to Palakkad, Kerala. K.D. Chandran, her father had two careers, one where he worked at the office of USIS and one as an actor. She was brought up in her hometown, Mumbai, and attended Mithibai college where she completed a degree in M.A. Economics – certainly a beauty with brain and talent.
Her passion for dance began at the tender age of three and a half years old. It consumed her young life, eating up most of her day – she would attend dance practices after school and return home at nine-thirty in the evening.
The influence of dance was such, that despite passing the 10th standard with a first position at 80% she refused to opt for sciences and took up arts in hopes that she could continue her dancing. By now, she had performed at a number of venues and events, and for her, it was just the beginning of the show. The universe, however, had other plans.
In 1981, 16-year-old Chandran was traveling to Trichy by bus where it met a huge accident, resulting in some casualties while others were extremely injured. Sudha Chandran was amongst the few that escaped relatively unscathed, with a few minor cuts and a fracture in the femur bone in her right leg.
However, since the patients were large in number, she was attended to by a group of interns who neglected to attend to the cut on her right ankle and wrapped it up with a bandage. This led to her foot developing gangrene, a condition where the body tissue dies. There was a risk of it spreading throughout the body, and she was given an ultimatum: life or limb.
Her devastated parents were forced to make a decision that would change her vision of life as what it was supposed to be to what it could become. The amputation broke her, as she truly realized how deep her dream became the fuel for…