India is a land of art and everyone is an artist, especially when that art involves dancing. Has it ever occurred to you why Indians love dancing so much? The most common answer to this question is “it’s a way of communication”. For us, dancing is a language that communicates our emotions and initiates social interactions. Every function, every celebration, and every new beginning here involves dancing.
The definition of dancing is different for everyone, and every dancer has their respective genre of expertise. From training sessions to learning the perfect choreography, it takes a lot to become a successful dancer. And India has been home to many exceptionally talented dancers who have earned huge success and appreciation because of their dancing skills.
Here are the Most Iconic Indian Dancers of all Time
Our Bollywood movies are incomplete without the latka jhatkas. Whether you are a Bollywood fan or not, you cannot deny the fact that Madhuri Dixit is the dancing goddess of Bollywood. As a trained Kathak Dancer, she nailed every genre of dancing she has ever performed. We can never get over her graceful and fluid moves, expressions, and energy. Bollywood will always be indebted to her. Learn some of Madhuri Dixit’s iconic moves in our Online dance class and ace your Bollywood Dancing skills.
Is it rubber? Oh no, wait it’s Prabhu Deva. How can we possibly talk about Bollywood Dancing Stars and not mention Prabhu Deva? If there is anything or anyone beyond best when it comes to dancing, it has to be him. His outlandish clothes, incredible flexibility, comic dancing technique, and sensuality make every Prabhu Deva song unforgettable. Despite being at the zenith of his dancing career, he remains one of the most humble and down-to-earth star icons in the industry.
If you are a 90s kid born in India, there is no way you haven’t danced to the Dhak Dhak track, starring Madhuri Dixit. You have right? That was the power of Saroj Khan, the “Mother of Dance and Choreography in India”. One can even say to the extent that Madhuri Dixit’s reputation as the queen of graceful expressions and dance was backed by the efforts of Saroj Khan herself.
How can we not talk about classical dancers when listing the most iconic dancers of India? After all Indian classical dance holds onto the roots of the cultural heritage of this country. A true icon of the Indian Classical Dance form, Mrinalini Sarabhai was the epitome of grace. She was the first woman to learn Kathakali, an art form exclusively for men. She was a dancer and also an activist who used her art as a medium to raise awareness of social issues. She was a pioneer in establishing Bharatnatyam as a highly respectable dance style that could be performed outside of temples. Dedicating most of her life to her passion, Mrinalini Sarabhai died at the age of 97.
Pandit Birju Maharaj
Who doesn’t know about the world-famous Kathak Dancer, Pandit Birju Maharaj? E was the torch bearer of Kathak, who performed in several countries throughout his illustrious career, and gave his first performance at the age of seven. He was not only a Kathak dancer but also a sensitive poet and captivating orator. Known for his facial expressions and quick foot movements, Pandit Birju Maharaj is the epitome of Kathak.
If there is a contemporary dance legend in India it’s definitely Terence Lewis. The suave dancer-choreographer has worked in over 25 movies so far. He has also been on the judges’ panel of Nach Baliye and Dance India Dance (DID). His near-perfect, sensuous and breathtaking dances have attracted millions of hearts and made him one of the best dancers in the country.
The OG Disco dancer of India, Mithun Chakroborty is truly an iconic Indian dancer. He is the one who introduced the Hatke dance culture in India with his groovy signature pelvic moves. He introduced the youth to twist, disco, break dance, and hip-hop dancing. The dancing superstar took a generation by storm and pulled them to the dance floor.
So, these were our most iconic Indian dancers of all time. The list of talented Indian dancers is endless, and we surely must have missed a few names. Why don’t you suggest your favorite Indian dancing icons of all time? And while you do so, you can also check out our dance lessons and choreographies for every genre, every mood, and everyone.