Today marks International Dance Day. India has seen many talented performers who have made the country proud in the global space. One of them remains to be actor Shantanu Maheshwari. He’s been a part of Desi Hoppers, the dance crew that has won big at World Of Dance.
On the occasion of International Dance Day today, Shantanu Maheshwari is opening up about his journey with dance, praises from stars like Jennifer Lopez, Simon Cowell and so much more.
Check out excerpts from the conversation with Shantanu Maheshwari below.
Choosing dance as a career is a big deal in our country. You’ve been a part of Desi Hoppers and made it big at the World Of Dance. How has the journey been?
The journey has been great! Nothing short of a roller coaster that has given me immense learning, knowledge and helped me grow and mature as an individual in all aspects. Right from my D3 days, our showrunner of D3 and founder of Desi Hoppers, Palki Malhotra, and all of us have been working on dance being taken as a career option. With all of us on the same page, we have been working very hard to prove ourselves on International platforms and put India on the world map for dance, which we successfully managed to achieve. There is still a long way to go for us to bring about a lot more changes that Indian dancing needs, but the thought processes towards it have changed and that is a big deal!
Talking about Desi Hoppers, the main struggle was to initially form the crew, match thought processes on the kind of dancing that was wanted. Everyone came from different dancing backgrounds so get them to match each other’s dancing styles was tough, but all of us eventually got in sync with each other. Convincing people that we could also compete Internationally was another challenge, but one we sailed through and the results were of course successful when we competed with crews from around the world and brought home the World of Dance championship trophy! Our crew always aims at celebrating dance, so this is something we don’t really talk about, but we have been pitching Indian dancers internationally once we got our exposure, so a way forward is made for other aspiring Indian dancers. It gives us immense pleasure to now see India being recognized internationally for dancing, and dance as a career being taken a lot more seriously in our country now.
That also led you to perform at a stage like America’s Got Talent. A worldwide recognized star like Jennifer Lopez tweeted for you guys as well. Would you like to share something about that?
After the World of Dance championship, tremendous opportunities at many International events and shows opened up for us. Participating in America’s Got Talent and World of Dance Season 2 were a few of them. There were our very first Hollywood reality show experiences and participating in them made us think out of the box, create choreographies that were new, fresh and ones that had not been tried out before. Being a part of these shows even gave us a chance to understand how the working style and production in the west is very different.
It was a great experience dancing in front of judges like Simon Cowell, Mel B from America’s Got Talent and Jennifer Lopez, Derek Hough and Neyo from WOD season 2. Simon had even told us how impressed he was by the way we had worked on the entire choreography by ourselves, and Jennifer Lopez, Neyo and Derek Hough were very mesmerized by the Indian flavour we put into our performances. Appreciation and advice from such huge International stars and icons was motivating and inspiring and the entire experience of being on these shows was a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for our crew!
Wishing all our readers and fans of Shantanu Maheshwari, a very happy International Dance Day!