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Sunday, April 11, 2021

RIP Saroj Khan: The choreographer who made dancing look effortless

Bollywood choreographer Saroj Khan passed away at the age of 71 due to a cardiac arrest. After complaining of breathing issues, she was admitted to the hospital earlier this week. On Friday morning, the veteran breathed her last and ever since condolences have been pouring in.

Masterji, as she is popularly called by everyone, put her heart and soul in choreographing some of the finest Bollywood songs. She has to her credit, 8 Filmfare Awards and 3 National Awards across her career spanning a couple of decades. And today is a day we must celebrate her for her love for dancing. Hence, we decided to list down some of our favourites from the maestro.

Our top 10 picks of the finest songs courtesy Saroj Khan:

Dola Re Dola

This Devdas track has managed to wow the audiences for reasons more than just the actors and music. Even after all these years, Saroj ji’s choreography continues to be one of the finest highlights and rightly so. With Aishwarya Rai and Madhuri Dixit taking centre stage, it is the choreography that brings the song to life.

Yeh Ishq Hai

This song from Jab We Met is a favourite for more reasons than one and all the 90s kids have made an attempt to copy the steps. However, it was only Kareena Kapoor Khan who managed to ace all the steps and well, rightly so. She learned from the maestro after all!

Hawa Hawai

Sridevi has had a screen presence that none other could match up to. And to do justice to her work and skills, Saroj Khan was at her finest when she choreographed this one for the actress. While the song was a peppy number and matching to the beats mighty difficult, this actor-choregrapher duo did a great job.

Ek Do Teen

Madhuri Dixit in this song was a treat and we all know how things went uphill for Saroj Khan and the star. Even after all this time, we love watching the diva perform to this song and why wouldn’t we? If Madhuri is the heart of this song, Saroj ji put the soul into it.

Choli Ke Peeche Kya Hai

Another one of the dancy numbers, this song from Khalnayak gets our foots tapping every single time. In fact, while Saroj Khan brought a sense of boldness and sensuality to the dancing, Neena Gupta and Madhuri turned it into quite the hit. If this song plays, the girls are sure to take the dance floor!

Dhak Dhak Karne Laga

Well, the duo of Saroj Khan and Madhuri Dixit has managed to pull off so many hits that this space might fall short. Another of the epic tracks featuring Anil Kapoor along with Madhuri, the performance here is the ultimate Bollywood fun. No one can match the kind of dance Dixit pulled off here and hats off to Masterji for this one!


As a child, I have danced to this song on multiple occasions and it continues to be that song for me, as is for many others. I wonder if there is anyone who has heard this song and doesn’t know the hook step by heart, and rightly so! Aishwarya did a great job and Ajay Devgn managed to pull it off just fine, but Saroj ji is the real star for this song.

Radha Kaise Na Jale

Gracy Singh and Aamir Khan have owned this song like no other, and oh boy, was it a treat to watch them dance? While both of them did a fair job, due credits to Saroj Khan for this is not something that anyone can pull off. This track from Lagaan is a song that is one good old track to remember.

Tabaah Ho Gaye

One of the newest tracks, this one saw Madhuri and Saroj Khan come together once again. Though Kalank did not do very well, this could have marked Khan’s return to the Bollywood space. But for now, we shall remember this track and the dance for all the good reasons, and celebrate Masterji for it.

May her soul rest in peace and may we continue to celebrate her for bringing all of her heart and soul to songs.

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