We hardly think about those dancers whose profession is to create magic on the dance floor.
When people tend to think about the best dancers India has to offer, they think about Bollywood celebrities, TV personalities and established Bollywood choreographers.
We hardly ever think about those young dancers whose profession and passion is to create magic on the dance floor.
India is full to the brim with young rising stars who are stamping their mark on the dance scene.
With that in mind, here are DESIblitz’s top Indian dancers and choreographers that you should keep your eye on.
- Punit Pathak
Pathak was the second runner up on Dance India Dance 2, and then worked for Jhalak Dikhla Jaa.
His most successful season was with his third dance partner, Lauren Gottlieb with whom he delivered performances that raised the bar of dance shows across the country.
He also competed in the 7th season of the show with actress, Mouni Roy. Punit has also played a pivotal role in India’s first dance film, ABCD: Any Body Can Dance (2013), which will see its sequel in 2015 with Varun Dhawan and Shraddha Kapoor.
- Tushar Kalia
Whilst Kalia may be born and raised in India, his profession has truly brought him an international recognition in the dance world.
He has played the lead role in Game of Dice, which received accolades and rave reviews in Brazil, Oslo, Trinidad and Tobago art.
Not to mention being part of the opening ceremony of the Commonwealth Games held in India, a truly privileged opportunity.
The star has worked with international choreographers for the production Motherland that performed 25 shows all across Europe.
He also competed in the latest season of Jhalak Dikhla Jaa 7 with another fabulous trained dancer, Shakti Mohan.
- Shakti Mohan
Mohan is a trained dancer with an inspirational story. At the tender age of 4, she had an accident that led to doctors warning her that she may never walk without support again, let alone dance.
However, with her families motivation, Mohan overcame her situation and was able to walk and dance again.
Mohan has since been crowned the winner of Dance India Dance 2 and played the lead in dance-drama TV show, Dil Dosti Dance. She also appeared in the item song, ‘Aa Re Pritam Pyaare’ from Rowdy Rathore (2012).
Mohan’s international achievements include being the face of Lufthansa Airlines and being the first Indian to be featured in the worldwide BBC’s Collaboration Culture series.
- Kunwar Amar
Shakti’s fellow co star on Dil Dosti Dance, Kunwar Amar is also an established dancer and contestant in Dance India Dance 2.
He has danced with his real life girlfriend, Charlie in the popular dance show, Nach Baliye.
A master of contemporary dance, Kunwar takes urban and street dance and adds a Desi twist.
- Sneha Kapoor
Dubbed the ‘Indian Salsa Princess’, this talented dancer was a finalist in Season 1 of India’s Got Talent.
Kapoor has represented India in international salsa championships, winning the Australian Salsa Classic and European Salsa Masters in 2007.
She also choreographed the top 15 contestants of Dance India Dance season 3, as well as several seasons of Jhalak Dikhla Jaa – her most successful contestant being Rithvik Dhanjani, whom she reached the finals with.
To top it all off, she even broke a Guinness world record for the ‘most swing dance flips in a minute’.
- Dharmesh Yelande
Yelande came second in Dance India Dance 2 and won the dance show, Boogie Woogie.
After his experience in several dance shows, he was hired by Farah Khan to choreograph the movie Tees Maar Khan (2010).
Yelande also played a pivotal role in the dance film, ABCD, and now runs his own dance academy in Baroda known as the D’virus Dance Academy.
- Salman Yusuff Khan
Khan was the winner of the first ever Dance India Dance. After winning the show, Khan made many Bollywood appearances, including a performance for the title song of Wanted (2009) and Rakta Charitra.
He was a choreographer for Yana Gupta in Jhalak Dikhhla Jaa (season 4), and Isha Sharvani (season 5), where he delivered stellar performances.
But it was in the 6th season in which he won the show with Drashti Dhami. As with others on this list, Khan also played a part in ABCD.
- Raghav Juyal
Juyal is renowned as the ‘King of Slow Motion’ for his surreal dance moves in slow-mo style.
His stage name of ‘Crockroaxz’ is descriptive of his dancing style. An amalgamation of being both powerful like a crocodile, and creepy like a cockroach.
Raghav was a finalist in the third season of Dance India Dance and his team in Dance ke Superkids were declared as the winners under his captaincy.
This young dance duo are the shining stars of tomorrow’s India.
They won India’s Got Talent when they surprised audiences with their mind-blowing salsa dancing skills.
They also competed in Jhalak Dikhla Jaa, where they showed how their dance skills transcended beyond salsa, and came third.
- Shampa Sonthalia
Daughter of renowned Kathak dancer, Gopi Krishna, Sonthalia was the winner of Jhalak Dikhla Jaa season 5 when she was paired with Gurmeet Choudhary.
She also competed in the 7th Season show with TV actor, Ashish Sharma, where the pair won.
Sonthalia has choreographed ‘Ang Laga De Re’ from the movie Goliyon Ki Raasleela: Ram-Leela and has been an assistant choreographer on Dhoom 3.
Whilst they may have started their careers off as dancers, they have all now diversified.
Creating their own identity through working in international shows, opening their own dance schools or choreographing for Bollywood films.
These talented individuals will ensure a bright future for the kala (‘art’).