Open main menu

Nirmala Nagpal, popularly known as Saroj Khan (born 22 November 1948) is one of the most prominent Indian dance choreographers in Hindi cinema. She was born at the Bombay State (present day Maharashtra), India. With a career span of over forty years, she choreographed more than 2000 songs and is known as "The Mother of Dance/Choreography in India".[1]

Saroj Khan
Saroj khan nachle ve with saroj khan.jpg
Nirmala Nagpal

(1948-11-22) 22 November 1948 (age 70)
Other namesSaroj Khan
Years active1958-present


Born Nirmala, her parents migrated to India after partition of India. She started her career as a child artist at the age of three with the film Nazarana as child Shyama,[2] and a background dancer in the late 1950s. She learnt dance while working under film choreographer B. Sohanlal. Later, she herself shifted to choreography, first as an assistant choreographer and later getting her break as an independent choreographer, with Geeta Mera Naam (1974). However, she had to wait many years to receive acclaim, which came with her work with Sridevi; Hawa Hawai in Mr India (1987), Nagina (1986) and Chandni (1989), and later with Madhuri Dixit, starting with the hit Ek Do Teen in Tezaab (1988), Tamma Tamma Loge in Thanedaar (1990)[3] and Dhak Dhak Karne Laga in Beta (1992). Thereafter, she went on to become one of the most successful Bollywood choreographers.[2][4]

In 2014, Khan worked with Madhuri Dixit again in Gulaab Gang.[5] She is on the advisory board of Rishihood University.[6]

Television appearancesEdit

Saroj Khan appeared on a reality dance show as a member of the jury in 2005 Nach Baliye, which aired on STAR One along with two other judges. She also appeared in the second season of the same show. She has recently been a judge for the show Ustaadon Ka Ustaad, which is aired on Sony Entertainment Television (India). She appeared on the 2008 show Nachle Ve with Saroj Khan, which was aired on NDTV Imagine. She choreographed for this show. She appeared on Sony's Boogie Woogie (TV series) show from December 2008 as one of the judges, along with Javed Jaffrey, Naved Jaffrey and Ravi Behl. She was a judge on the third season of a popular show – Jhalak Dikhhla Jaa, which began on 27 February 2009 and was aired on Sony Entertainment Television (India) alongside former Nach Baliye judge Vaibhavi Merchant and actress Juhi Chawla.

She is judging the dance reality show Nachle Ve with Saroj Khan. She has hosted and completed Nachle Ve with Saroj Khan.

In 2012, The Saroj Khan Story, a documentary produced by PSBT and Films Division of India and directed by Nidhi Tuli was released.[7][8]

She appeared in Taarak Mehta Ka Ooltah Chashmah as Judge in Dance Competition

Selected filmographyEdit

As writer

Awards and recognitionsEdit

Madhuri Dixit dancing to Dola Re Dola, for which Khan won her first National Award in Unforgettable Tour, 2008

National Film Award

Saroj Khan is the recipient of the most National Film Award for Best Choreography with three wins.

Year Film Nominated work Category Result Ref.
2003 Devdas "Dola Re Dola" Best Choreography Won
2006 Sringaram All songs Won
2008 Jab We Met "Yeh Ishq Haaye" Won

Filmfare Best Choreography Award

Saroj Khan was the first recipient of the filmfare Best Choreography Award. Filmfare instituted this award after watching the excellent choreography and audience response to Khan's song "Ek Do Teen" from Tezaab. Saroj Khan went onto make a hat-trick at the Filmfare awards winning consistently for 3 years from 1989 to 1991. She also holds the record for winning the most Filmfare Best Choreographer Awards, winning 8.

American Choreography Award

Nandi Awards


In April 2018, Khan made statements defending the practice of casting couch, stating that the film industry provides people employment and "doesn’t rape and abandon" them. Following online backlash, she apologised for her comments.[9]

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ Correspondent, BizAsia (28 April 2019). "International Dance Day 2019: Five Bollywood choreographers that we love". BizAsia | Media, Entertainment, Showbiz, Events and Music. Retrieved 19 September 2019.
  2. ^ a b Gulzar; Govind Nihalani; Saibal Chatterjee (2003). Encyclopaedia Of Hindi Cinema. Popular Prakashan. p. 573. ISBN 978-81-7991-066-5. Retrieved 13 June 2013.
  3. ^ "'Tamma tamma loge' got okayed in the 48th take: Saroj Khan". Times Of India. 23 May 2013. Retrieved 13 June 2013.
  4. ^ Shoma A. Chatterji (28 October 2012). "Diva of Dance". The Tribune. Retrieved 13 June 2013.
  5. ^ "Madhuri is still superb: Saroj Khan". The Times of India. 22 May 2013. Retrieved 13 June 2013.
  6. ^ "Board of Advisors". Rishihood University. Retrieved 19 June 2019.
  7. ^ "She's the Dancing Queen". Indian Express. 1 April 2012. Retrieved 13 June 2013.
  8. ^ "The real 'Dhak Dhak' girl". MiD DAY. 15 June 2012. Retrieved 13 June 2013.
  9. ^

External linksEdit