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“Reality shows have given choreography its due”

Stanley D’Costa has been around for years but it was Vidya Balan’s Lavani number, Mala jau de in Ferrari Ki Sawaari, that brought him recognition

The Beginning

Like many other kids, I too was interested in dancing. It was while I was in college that I decided to pursue a career in dancing. I assisted Remo D’Souza for almost five years. As a choreographer, one has to learn a lot. The more you assist, the more you learn.

First Break

My first break in the film industry came in 2005, when I choreographed a song called Deedar de from the film Dus, directed by Anubhav Sinha. But I received recognition only in 2008, when I choreographed an album song Pardesiya. It was this song and video that actually made Rakhi Sawant famous. It also brought me into the limelight. It was a time when album music videos were in.

Turning Point

In spite of working in the industry for so many years, it was only in 2012 that I got a chance to choreograph for Vidhu Vinod Chopra’s Ferrari Ki Sawaari and Vidya Balan’s song Mala jau de became a hit. So Mala jau de was the turning point of my career and, after that, I began to receive many offers.

Choreography

Choreography is about portraying your emotions through dance. Even a simple walk can be choreographed, because walking with style and grace is also a form of choreography.

Starry Tantrum

Being a choreographer is not easy. Often, a star may not like or want to do a particular step and we need to convince them that it will look good or we have to give them some easy steps to do. There are many hurdles we face but in the end, the song has to look good. Once in a while, you get to work with someone like Vidya Balan, who is so committed to her work. She completed the song (Mala jau de) six days earlier than we anticipated. In fact, on the last day of rehearsals, she was really tired but when I requested that she rehearse for five more hours, she agreed and we completed the shooting.

Reality Shows

Reality shows have changed the perception of choreography as a career and there are so many more individuals who want to become choreographers. On the flipside, there are many who want to become choreographers without being good dancers. Being a choreographer is hard work as it takes a lot of practice and years to master.

No Face Value

Choreographers are technicians so we don’t have any face value. Even famous choreographers like Remo have struggled to get where they are and it took them years to make a mark. Today, unless a choreographer is part of a reality show, it is almost impossible to have any face value.

Future Projects

My future projects are Tanuja Chandra’s Chitthiya and then Raj Kumar Hirani’s P.K.

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