Free Press Journal

Choreographer Ashley Lobo on how books inspire him

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Favourite books
I like The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho a lot. I read it many years ago and it still remains as one of my favourite books. It has many valuable insights about life, about following your dreams, about finding yourself, about reading the signs that life gives you, which has inspired me a lot. Another favourite is The Godfather by Mario Puzo.

Subject matters, not authors
I don’t really have any favourite authors as such as I usually pick books based on the story or subject. But I do enjoy books by Paulo Coelho, Kahlil Gibran, Mario Puzo, Hussain Zaidi, and some others.

Seeking inspiration
I mostly enjoy reading inspirational books that are based on life and spiritual development, told in the form of a story. Occasionally, I also enjoy crime and mafia but don’t end up reading that genre too often because of my schedule.


Making reading a habit
It is challenging as I tour quite a lot with my dance company Navdhara. However, I was taught by one of my mentors to end every day with 15 minutes of reading something inspirational, so I try and maintain that as a habit.

Reading quota
I read between two to three books every month. I often read multiple books at a time as I like to alternate between books. And some books, I read over and over again.

Getting recommendations
I get my fill of book recommendations, usually, from my wife. And sometimes, colleagues or friends.

ebook or physical book?
E-books, as they are easy to carry when I tour.

On ‘currently reading’ shelf
1) The Tibetan Book of the Dead translated by Ogden Goelet and Raymond Faulkner (as I am in the process of creating a dance piece on death for an Austrian ballet company).
2) The Yoga of Jesus by Paramahansa Yogananda.
3) Bible (which is a constant).