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Choreographer Rujuta Vaidya Recalls Her First Meeting With Dancing Legends Saroj Khan and Madhuri Dixit
Choreographer Rujuta Vaidya tells how she had to gather the courage to speak to dancing legend Saroj Khan and how she interacted with actor Madhuri Dixit over a zoom call.
Choreographer Rujuta Vaidya was born in America and has just returned to India. She has always been a fan of Bollywood and has spoken about how her passion for the Hindi film industry has influenced her work. The choreographer discussed the industry’s underutilised potential for musical theatres. She also told India.com about her first meeting with late dance icon Saroj Khan and actor Madhuri Dixit.
The choreographer who is all set open her own musical ‘Bhangin It,’ told India.com about her love for Bollywood since childhood. She told how back in her time there was not much exposure to Indian culture or Indian art anywhere except for Bollywood. Watching films on a video cassette on Saturday mornings in New York was a routine for her. She said, “I would tell them like, hey, you know, I heard that this movie, though, can you go get the videocassette. So my dad would go hunt it down, bring it back home, and I would watch it on Saturday mornings in, New York, New Jersey, it used to be a local Indian TV show that used to come on at 8 AM. And every Saturday morning, I would go into my parent’s bedroom and put that show on to watch it at 8 AM. And they would be like, Can you shut off the TV, please? They could never understand. And there was something just that just inherently within me that made me gravitate towards Bollywood from a very, very young age.”
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Rujuta told us about her first interaction with dance master Saroj Khan and how she had the chance to learn under her. Vaidya revealed being mesmerised by her. She drew all her courage and asked Saroj Khan to teach her. Rujuta told us, “And it took me a lot of guts to ask her whether she would train me because, at that time, she was only doing the film, she didn’t have a dance school, it was unheard of that any of these choreographers just taught people, you know, on the side, it was not done. So after I kind of had to get that muster up that courage to ask her, I did, you know, ask her if she could train me. And then that’s when, you know, I was in touch with her. And she said, come to India and all of that.”
Rujuta reveals how COVID ruined her plans to meet Madhuri Dixit in person. The choreographer was the international content head for ‘Dance With Madhuri,’ which is why she got a chance to interact with the actor. She said, “So I got to have a lovely zoom, call one on one zoom call with her. And I definitely had to mentally prep the night before. Because this was my idol. You know, she’s the reason I do what I do. So I kind of had to collect myself before I got on my call. But I had a lovely call with her. And she’s wonderful and fantastic. And so down to earth, and so easy to talk to. So I had my call and you know, I did the work I needed to do with her. And then I did, of course, tell her that you are the reason I do what I do.”
Talking about her show Bangin It, she told us how it will be creating a space for South Asians in the world of Musical theatres. The choreographer plans to improve the state of musicals in the Indian entertainment industry and help it to flourish.
Watch this space for more updates!
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