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How Aishwarya Rai Bachchan Inspired Actor and Choreographer, Chandni Srivastava

In the latest addition to the Rolling Stone Tribute series, Chandani Srivastava shares her journey to becoming one of India’s most sought off choreographers

Divyansha Dongre Jul 28, 2021
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2018- the year India couldn’t get enough of “Crazy Kiya Re.” In many ways, the track fueled the anticipation for the sequel to one of Bollywood’s highly celebrated action-thriller films-Dhoom. It was an absolute treat seeing Aishwarya Rai Bachchan’s expressive choreography match Sunidhi Chauhan’s euphonious vocals. Amidst the crowd that stayed glued to their devices every time the track aired stood Chandni Srivastava, absorbing and mirroring Bachchan’s iconic moves.

“It’s said that a dancer’s grace is in their expressions and wrists– and the way she [Aishwarya Rai Bachchan] moved is all grace for me,” explains Srivastava as she recalls her formative years dancing to Bollywood tracks. Like many, Srivastava grew up watching Rai-Bachchan embody the passion of some of Bollywood’s best-written songs through her grace and expressive movements. 

Dance came almost naturally for Srivastava. The Shimla-born-Delhi-resident was often found honing her skills at school-level cultural programs. Soon, Srivastava joined the Western dance group, Verve and her path crossed with fellow choreographer, Gaurav Mankoti. Together the duo found fame through their viral dance covers, notably Zayn Malik and Taylor Swift’s “I Don’t Wanna Live Forever” and Ed Sheeran’s “Shape Of You.” Despite the overnight fame and success, Srivastava remains grounded, ” I feel there is a need for constant training. People must take the time to build their craft before putting themselves out there – It’s about movement and not likes and views.”

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From crediting Rai-Bachchan’s performance in classic hits such as Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam and Devdas as her source of inspiration to choreographing and training actors such as Katrina Kaif and Ranveer Singh, Srivastava is focused, now more than ever, to share her artistry with the world, “All I have to say is that I will be visible on-screen dancing and acting, soon and always.”

Watch Chandni Srivastava share her Rolling Stone India Tribute to Aishwarya Rai Bachchan below.

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