Shah Rukh Khan and Mahirah Khan performed gracefully to the Makar Sankranti-meets-garba song, ‘Udi Udi Jaaye’ in ‘Raees’. They thoroughly trained with folk dance specialists, choreographer couple Samir and Arsh Tanna, to make their act look effortless and gracious. Bring this up with Samir, and he says, “Mahirah and Shah Rukh were extremely professional. Mahirah took 10 days to get her steps right, but SRK picked up the moves in just one day. When we started shooting, he’d turn up a couple of hours early time to rehearse with the dancers. That helped immensely and we could okay our takes quickly.”
Ranveer Singh and Deepika Padukone had also trained just as hard for their garba songs in ‘Goliyon Ki Rasleela: Ram Leela’, remembers the dance master. Samir and his wife had even won awards for their choreography in the Gujarat-based version of Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet.
Samir, whose teen daughter Tamanna assisted him in his recent outing with SRK and Mahirah, says, “We choreograph all traditional dance forms, but it’s the garba that has won us recognition in the industry. Salman Khan and Aishwarya Rai Bachchan were among the first stars we choreographed in ‘Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam’. Since then, we have largely been acknowledged for our garba songs.”