Popularly known as Pandit Birju Maharaj, was an exponent of the Lucknow Kalka-Bindadin gharana of Kathak dance in India. He was a descendant of the Maharaj family of Kathak dancers, which includes his two uncles, Shambhu Maharaj and Lachhu Maharaj, and his father and guru, Acchan Maharaj. He also practised Hindustani classical music and was a vocalist.
Birju Maharaj was born in the house of Kathak exponent, Jagannath Maharaj, popularly known as Acchan Maharaj of Lucknow Gharana, who served as court dancer in Raigarh princely state. Birju was trained by his uncles, Lachhu Maharaj and Shambhu Maharaj, and his father, and he gave his first recital at the age of seven. On 20 May 1947, his father died when he was nine.
𝐄𝐝𝐮𝐜𝐚𝐭𝐢𝐨𝐧 𝐚𝐧𝐝 𝐜𝐚𝐫𝐞𝐞𝐫
Maharaj started teaching the dance form at the age of thirteen, at the Sangeet Bharti in New Delhi. He then taught at the Bharatiya Kala Kendra in Delhi, and at the Kathak Kendra (a unit of the Sangeet Natak Akademi) where he was Head of Faculty, and director, retiring in 1998. After which he opened his dance school, Kalashram, also in Delhi. He composed the music, and sang, for two dance sequences in the Satyajit Ray's Shatranj Ke Khilari, and choreographed the song Kaahe Chhed Mohe from the 2002 film version of novella Devdas. After working along with his uncle, Shambhu Maharaj at Bhartiya Kala Kendra, later the Kathak Kendra, New Delhi, he remained head of the latter, for several years, till his retirement in 1998 when he opened his dance school, Kalashram, also in Delhi.
𝐀𝐰𝐚𝐫𝐝𝐬 𝐚𝐧𝐝 𝐡𝐨𝐧𝐨𝐫𝐬
𝟭𝟵𝟲𝟰- Sangeet Natak Akademi Award
𝟏𝟗𝟖𝟔 - Padma Vibhushan
𝟏𝟗𝟖𝟔 - Nritya Choodamani Award by Sri Krishna Gana Sabha
𝟏𝟗𝟖𝟕 - Kalidas Samman
𝟐𝟎𝟎𝟐- Lata Mangeshkar Puraskar
Honorary doctorate from Indira Kala Sangeet Vishwavidyalaya
Honorary doctorate from Banaras Hindu University
Sangam Kala Award
Bharat Muni Sammaan
Nritya Vilas Award
Adharshila Shikhar Samman
Soviet Land Nehru Award
National Nritya Shiromani Award
Rajiv Gandhi National Sadbhavana Awar
𝟐𝟎𝟏𝟐- National Film Award for Best Choreography for Unnai Kaanaathu (Vishwaroopam)
𝟐𝟎𝟏𝟔 - Filmfare Award for Best Choreography for Mohe Rang Do Laal (Bajirao Mastani)
Birju Maharaj passed away due to a heart attack on 16 January 2022 at the age of 83 at his residence in Delhi
We seek to promote lively discussion and debate. We believe that our users have the right to express themselves freely in a manner that is courteous and respectful of others' point of view and sensibility.
Repeated violations may lead to suspension and/or termination of your message posting privileges.
www.tributes.in takes abuse very seriously: We will co-operate fully with law enforcement, including disclosure of your user ID, IP address and messaging history.
Please review your message, you cannot delete/edit once it has been posted.
Give a Tribute to someone special and see how your family and friends react - it'll be priceless (trust us)!Create a Tribute Page