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Madhuri Dixit recalls working with late choreographer Saroj Khan in Devdas

On the completion of 18 years of film Devdas, actress Madhuri Dixit Nene recalled how late veteran choreographer Saroj Khan gave one of the finest dance performances of her career. Taking to Instagram, Madhuri penned a lengthy post, expressing her love for Saroj Khan and remembering how the late artiste made her groove to "Maar Daala".

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New Delhi Published on: July 12, 2020 17:30 IST
Madhuri Dixit recalls working with late choreographer Saroj Khan in Devdas
Image Source : INSTAGRAM/SAROJKHANOFFICIAL

Madhuri Dixit recalls working with late choreographer Saroj Khan in Devdas

On the completion of 18 years of film Devdas, actress Madhuri Dixit Nene recalled how late veteran choreographer Saroj Khan gave one of the finest dance performances of her career. Taking to Instagram, Madhuri penned a lengthy post, expressing her love for Saroj Khan and remembering how the late artiste made her groove to "Maar Daala". "Today as we mark #18YearsOfDevdas, I dedicate it to the force behind one of my finest dance performances in the film to Saroj ji."

"Shooting any song with Saroj ji was as great as ever. 'Devdas' was a very special film, as all the songs in this film were very grand. I had never done a song like this with her. We did a lot of Indian songs, but not such classical dance and Saroj ji was a semi-classical dancer. She used to say, 'It's a little Kathak style, take care'. She is not with us today, but these are the things that I will always remember," Madhuri wrote.

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Today as we mark #18YearsOfDevdas I dedicate it to the force behind one of my finest dance performances in the film - Saroj ji. सरोज जी के साथ किसी भी गाने को शूट करना हमेशा की तरह शानदार अनुभव होता था। देवदास बहुत ही स्पेशल फिल्म थी, क्योकि इस फिल्म के सारे गाने बहुत ही ग्रैंड थे। मैंने कभी उनके साथ इस तरह का गाना नहीं किया था। हमने बहुत सारे इंडियन गाने किये थे, लेकिन इस तरह का क्लासिकल डांस नहीं और सरोज जी सेमी क्लासिकल डांसर थी। वो कहती थी," ये जरा कत्थक स्टाइल है, संभाल लेना "। आज वो हमारे साथ नहीं हैं , पर ये वो बातें है जो मुझे हमेशा याद रहेंगी। देवदास के सारे गानों पर हमने बहुत मेहनत कि थी। हम सारी रात शूट किया करते थे, शाम 7 बजे से लेकर सुबह होने तक। जब भी मैंने सरोज जी के साथ काम किया, हमने कभी नहीं सोचा की स्टेप्स कितने आसान हो सकते है, पर हमेशा इस बात पर जोर रहा की हम इसे कितना कठिन कर सकते है। "मार डाला" में भी ऐसे कितने क्षण है, जो काफी कठिन थे ऐसा ही एक स्टेप था जहाँ मुझे अपने घुटने पर घूमना था और नीचे झुककर 'मार डाला' स्टेप करना था। पर जब भी मैं अपने घुटने पर घूमती थी, मैं फिसल जाती थी,पर हम बहुत ही निश्चित थे कि हम ऐसे ही इस मूवमेंट को करना चाहते हैं। इस गाने को लेकर हम काफी उत्साहित थे जिस तरह सरोज जी ने 'मार डाला' को चित्रित किया, बहुत ही सुन्दर है। इस गाने में ऐसे काफी सारे मूवमेंट्स हैं जो काफी कठिन हैं, एक शॉट ऐसा है जहाँ  'मार डाला' चार पांच तरीको से कहा जाता है| सरोज जी ने आईडिया निकाला कि इसे मूवमेंट्स में करने के जगह क्यों न हम चेहरे से अभिव्यक्त करें? एक 'मार डाला' जैसे आश्चर्य, एक जैसे उदास 'मार डाला', फिर एक वैसा जैसे मुझे पता है कि तुम मुझसे प्यार नहीं करते पर मैं करती हूँ इस तरह से इस गाने में हमनें काफी बार 'मार डाला' की अलग अलग अभिव्यक्ति दिखाई। इस गाने में सुंदरता है, पीड़ा है, खुशी है, इसमें वो सारे भाव हैं जो चंद्रमुखी ने महसूस किये हैं, और सरोज जी ने वो सारे भाव बहुत ही सुंदरता से चित्रित किये मुझे आज भी याद है जब शूट पैकउप हुआ, सरोज जी के चेहरे पर एक अलग ही मुस्कान थी, वो काफी खुश थी मेरी परफॉरमेंस से|

A post shared by Madhuri Dixit (@madhuridixitnene) on

She also shared how Saroj Khan stressed on creating difficult steps.

"We worked very hard on all songs of 'Devdas'. We used to shoot all night, from 7 in the evening till morning. Whenever I worked with Saroj ji, we never thought how easy the steps can be, but always stressed how hard we can make it," Madhuri said.

"There are also such moments, which were very difficult, there was one such step where I had to rotate on my knee. But I always used to slip while practising that. We were very excited about this song," she added.

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I still can’t believe master ji is no more. Losing a friend, philosopher & guide like her is devastating. It was difficult for me to put down my grief in words. I had spoken to her daughter when she was in the hospital & she told me that Saroj ji would be fine. Two days later, she was gone.⁣⁣ ⁣ The Guru-shishya bond that we shared, the assurance that she would be my mother on the sets, I'll miss everything. Today on the occasion of Guru Purnima, I pay my tribute to her. ⁣⁣ ⁣ Nobody can make women look so beautiful, desirable & sensuous on-screen like her. She made everything look like poetry in motion. Smitten by her, I had told her, "Saroji ji, agar aap shakkar hoti na, I would add you in my cup of tea & drink it." She would laugh heartily at this. I'll miss that playful laughter.⁣ ⁣ The first time I met her was while shooting for Maine Rab Se from Karma. Saroj ji asked me so many questions, one being 'Where did you learn to dance?' Unfortunately, our sequence was removed from the song. I'll miss her many questions.⁣ ⁣ Saroj Khan was a game changer in the industry. She was the rebel in the male-dominated profession. There were rough edges to her personality & I feel that's because life had been pretty uneven to her. I'll miss that determined & headstrong woman.⁣⁣ ⁣ Dancing in front of the camera & dancing on stage are two different things. Saroj ji taught me how to romance the camera when we worked on Ek Do Teen. Such was the song’s popularity that Filmfare had to create the Best Choreography category to honour Saroj ji. I'll miss her resolve to push the envelope all the time. ⁣⁣ ⁣ Her Nazakat, the aadayein, the elegance of every move, I was besotted. I knew we would do a lot of songs together. So we decided not to repeat any of the movements. She agreed to create hook steps that people will identify with every song. We created so many movements with no knowledge about what they are called. Who knew Tamma Tamma step was Dab? I'lll miss inventing hook steps with her.⁣ ⁣ She was close to my family as well & this loss is deeply personal. There's no one like her & there won't be another like her. Saroj ji, I'll miss everything about you. I'll miss your 'Perrrfect'!

A post shared by Madhuri Dixit (@madhuridixitnene) on

Madhuri concluded the post by stating that she can still recall that smile on Saroj Khan's face who was happy with the performance of the actress after the shoot was finished.

Saroj Khan breathed her last on July 3.

 

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