On this episode, Priya chats with Nakul Dev Mahajan, an award-winning Bollywood choreographer best known for his 12 years of choreography on "So You Think You Can Dance."
The two begin talk about "So You Think..." and the journey that led Nakul to open NDM Bollywood Dance Studios, one of the most popular Bollywood dance schools in the U.S. He opens up about his earliest memories of dance and talks about the cultural reckoning he faced in pursuit of it. Later, he shares what it was like coming out after establishing himself as a leading dance teacher in the community and the two do a deep dive about Karan Johar and the LGBTQ idols they wish they had. Finally, Nakul talks about his work on the new Disney Junior show, "Mira: Royal Detective" and the two play a Bollywood-themed rapid-fire round and "Instagram vs. Reality."
About the guest:
Nakul Dev Mahajan, “Hollywood’s Favorite Bollywood Choreographer,” is a world renowned and award winning American based Bollywood Choreographer. He is considered a pioneer in the field, by being the very first choreographer to bring Bollywood to American daytime and primetime television, opening up the first Bollywood Dance School in the US and being the first to bring Bollywood to the White House to name a few.
Nakul’s created national press and entertainment attention in 2003 when he opened his dance studio in Los Angeles, which ultimately lead to his 12 years association with the Emmy winning show, So You Think You Can Dance. He has worked with a plethora of celebrities and public figures such as Michelle Obama, Paula Abdul, David Schwimmer, Steve Carrel and Academy Award winners Natalie Portman and A.R. Rahman to name a few. Some of his major Hollywood choreography credits include Dancing with the Stars, America’s Best Dance Crew, The Nobel Peace Prize Concert, Dance Moms, Fuller House, The Miss America Pageant, The World’ Best, Superstars of Dance and A.R. Rahman’s World Tour: Jai Ho.
Today, Nakul’s dance company, NDM Bollywood Dance Studios has grown into one of the most popular Bollywood Dance Schools in the United States and he enriches over 3000 students each year through his studios and various conventions. Aside from 7 locations that NDM offers throughout the Los Angeles area, Nakul’s currently working Disney Junior's, Mira, Royal Detective and a documentary film on his struggles and triumphs as a cancer survivor, a member of the LGBTQ community and a choreographer. Nakul also contributes his talents for various charities throughout the year for children in poverty, women in abusive conditions, cancer awareness and the LGBTQ community.