Madhuri Idolises Kathak Exponent Birju Maharaj

Bollywood’s dancing diva Madhuri Dixit, who stole many hearts with her tantalising moves, says she is in complete awe of Kathak maestro Pandit Birju Maharaj, who according to her is the "ultimate dancer."

"I am in awe of Birju Maharaji. I am completely his fan. I feel he is the ultimate kathak dancer for me. There are many talented dancers in our country but I have not seen anyone like Maharaji. I respect him a lot," Madhuri told.

Madhuri is among the few actresses in B-town who have been trained and guided by Birju Maharaj.

The 43-year-old actress, who is a trained classical dancer, got to work with Birju Maharaj during the shooting of Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s film Devdas for the song — Hum pe ye kisne hara rang dala. The song which was exclusively picturised on Madhuri needed some classical dance steps.

"Kathak is my favourite dance form. It’s very close to my heart. I also like other classical dance forms. Today, a lot of free style and western dances have come in like Jive, Samba, Chacha, which require many sort of lifts and if they are necessary to bring a particular rhythm then you can’t do away with it," Madhuri said.

The actress said, in a dancer she looks for personality, body language, expression, movements and confidence. "Expressions are very important…sometimes one can dance with expressions."

"I feel nobody is a non-dancer….Everybody has a sense of rhythm and dance in them but once you grow up some inhibitions come up," she said.

When asked who her favourite actor is when it comes to dancing in Bollywood, Madhuri said, "Among actresses I like Vaijyanti Mala, Hemaji (Hema Malini) and Helenji and in actors I like Shammiji and Rishi’s style of dance. Hrithik is superb."

On dancing skills of both her sons — Arin and Raayan, Madhuri said, "Both like dancing but I haven’t seen their inclination towards dance. They like music."

About the reaction of her kids on her stardom in Bollywood, the actress said, "They were not aware about my stardom in Bollywood when they heard people praising me on the sets of Jhalak Dikhla Jaa. They realised it. They said…Mom so you are a big star…you are on television."(PTI)

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