Nakul Dev Mahajan

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Nakul Dev Mahajan
Born (1975-09-15) September 15, 1975 (age 40)
Agra, India
Occupation Dancer, choreographer
Years active 2003 - present
Current group NDM Dance Productions and Studios
Dances Bollywood dance

Nakul Dev Mahajan (born September 15, 1975) is an American Bollywood dancer and choreographer best known for his choreography on So You Think You Can Dance. He is the founder and artistic director of NDM Dance Productions and Studios, a Bollywood dance company based in Artesia, CA.

Early life and background[edit]

Born in Agra, India, in a Punjabi family,[1] Mahajan graduated from the University of California, Riverside with a bachelor's degree in Sociology and Dance in 2002.[2]


Michelle Obama joins students for a Bollywood Dance Clinic with Nakul Dev Mahajan, in White House, November 5, 2013

NDM Bollywood Dance Productions and Studios[edit]

In 2003, Mahajan launched the NDM Bollywood Dance Productions and Studios, the first Bollywood dance school in the U.S., which has served over 3000 students since then.[3][4] In 2015, 430 students and 20 members of the school's dance troupe performed Bollywood Travels (the annual student recital) for a total of 2700 audience members.[5]

So You Think You Can Dance[edit]

Nakul Dev Mahajan is the first choreographer to bring Bollywood to the So You Think You Can Dance stage. His routine for Season 4 by Katee Shean and Joshua Allen spent a week atop YouTube’s “Most Viewed” list.[6] Nakul was coaching team India at the Superstars of Dance on the NBC Network and choreographed six remaining crews at the ABDCrews (season 4).[7][8][9]

Nakul Dev Mahajan is heavily influenced by classical indian dances while bringing to them Western styles like hip-hop, Latin and jazz.[10] Due to his enormous activities in promoting Bollywood dance, Nakul is widely known as “Hollywood’s Favorite Bollywood Choreographer”.[11]

Cancer Diagnosis[edit]

A 2012 diagnosis of Stage 2 testicular cancer and the subsequent chemotherapy treatment interrupted Mahajan's career.[12]

White House Diwali Celebration[edit]

Following a tradition started by George W. Bush in 2003, an annual Diwali celebration takes place at the White House.[13] For the 2013 edition of the White House Diwali celebration, First Lady Michelle Obama hosted a Bollywood dance workshop, instructed and choreographed by Mahajan.[13][14][15] A photo of Michelle Obama dancing a Bollywood routine alongside Mahajan was cited as one of the top White House photos of 2013.[16][17]

Miss America 2014 Pageant[edit]

Mahajan choreographed the Bollywood-Indian classical dance fusion routine performed by Nina Davuluri at the Miss America 2014 Talent competition; the routine was set to the song Dhoom Taana, originally featured in the movie Om Shanti Om.[18] Davuluri's performance of this routine marked the first time a Bollywood dance routine had been performed on the Miss America stage.[18]


  1. ^ Jaskiran Kapoor (Nov 17, 2013). "Dance Like a Man - Indian Express". Retrieved 2013-12-12. 
  2. ^ "Notable Alumni - Nakul Dev Mahajan". UC Riverside Alumni Association. Archived from the original on 25 Jan 2016. Retrieved 2013-12-12. 
  3. ^ Nakul Dev Mahajan - Bio, Retrieved on 2010-6-4.
  4. ^ Tirusha. "Desis Sure Can Dance! ", Bravura Artist, Retrieved on 2010-06-23.
  5. ^ Rohit, Parimal M. (3 Apr 2015). "Nakul Dev Mahajan Dance Troupe Travels the World, Bollywood Style". India-West (Redondo Beach, CA, USA). Retrieved 8 Feb 2016. 
  6. ^ Jones, Jen. "Nakul Dev Mahajan: The Mastermind Behind Bollywood", Dancespirit Magazine, Retrieved on 2010-6-4.
  7. ^ Rohit, Parimal M. "TEAM INDIA’S DANCING QUEENS - Team India Members Shine on 'Superstars of Dance'". Archived from the original on 4 Aug 2009. Retrieved 22 Jun 2010. 
  8. ^ Bracchitta, John. "NBC reveals the identities of 'Superstars of Dance's teams and judges",, Retrieved on 2010-06-22.
  9. ^ "Can The ABDCrews Learn Bollywood In A Week?", MTV Remote Control Blog, Retrieved on 2010-06-24.
  10. ^ Abramowitz, Rachel. "Cutting a red carpet", Los Angeles Times, Retrieved on 2010-6-19.
  11. ^ Parimal M. Rohit. "One-Man Bollywood Show",, Retrieved on 2010-6-4.
  12. ^ Randeria-Leonard, Shyamal (16 Dec 2014). "Ambassador of Bollywood Dance". India Currents - The Complete Indian American Magazine. Retrieved 8 Feb 2016. 
  13. ^ a b Anand, Kanul (22 Oct 2014). "This is how the white house celebrates Diwali". India Times (Washington, DC, USA). Retrieved 7 Feb 2016. 
  14. ^ Yount, Stacey (10 Nov 2013). "WHEN NAKUL DEV MAHAJAN AND BOLLYWOOD WENT TO THE WHITE HOUSE FOR DIWALI!". (Washington, DC, USA). Retrieved 7 Feb 2016. 
  15. ^ "Remarks by the First Lady at Diwali Celebration". United States Government. 5 Nov 2013. Retrieved 8 Feb 2016. 
  16. ^ "Michelle Obama's Bollywood dance among top White House photos". NDTV (New Delhi Television Limited) (Washington, DC, USA). 8 Jan 2014. Retrieved 7 Feb 2016. 
  17. ^ "Michelle's Bollywood Dance Moves a Hit!". The Hindu (Washington, DC, USA). 8 Jan 2014. Retrieved 7 Feb 2016. 
  18. ^ a b Tsering, Lisa (16 Sep 2013). "Mahajan Choreographs Another Winning Performance". India-West. Retrieved 6 Feb 2016. 

External links[edit]