SPOTLIGHT Anusha Dandekar opens up to PAYAL CHHABRIA on her new album “Better than your ex”, on experimenting with films and her future plans…
After VJing and acting, why did you choose to diversify into music?
The only thing that I was sure about was that I wanted to be a VJ. Acting and music just happened. Actually, I’ve been brought up in a family that is high on acting and music. My father used to act in a lot of plays. So I guess that’s where it stems from.
Are you going to give up one for the other? Or is it going to be juggling between the three?
It is of course going to be juggling between the three. My issue is that I get bored really soon. So I always need to do something different to keep myself motivated. When I’m VJing, I get to be myself. When I’m acting, I get to play another character and when I’m singing, I get to do something different. It’s fascinating to be all three.You’ve been experimenting. You recently did Gautam Joglekar’s “Jai Jai Maharashtra Maja” and then “Better than your ex”.
How was the process of entertaining two totally diverse groups of audiences?
Honestly, I feel like I’m a split personality (laughs). However, it was fun. I enjoyed performing for Maharashtrian audiences. It was one opportunity to do something for my family; for my grandparents. I’m sure they are watching me from above and showering their blessings on me. It was a very satisfying experience. In case of ‘Better than your ex’, I’m catering to a totally new sector. It’s a very challenging process. I’m looking forward to it.
What inspired your latest album?
A high school sweetheart (giggles). It’s a story that 99.9 per cent of the people can relate to. What I realised over the years is that exes don’t end up as friends. After spending so much time with a person, it is so heartbreaking that they part ways, completely. It so happens that another person comes into your ex’s life and they usually draw the line. So, what most people want to say is that “I’m better than my ex”.
What kind of research did you do before crafting the album?
I did absolutely no research for the album. One day in New York I was telling a friend about my ex. It was fun, cheeky and naughty and we realised it would make a great story. So we worked on similar lines. Even when you listen to the song, the lyrics will seem like I’m narrating a story.
Did you undergo any special training for the Lavani that you’ve performed for Goutham Joglekar’s film?
It’s funny, actually. I had never done something so “Indian” before. There was no special training or rehearsals. I learnt the dance then and there, on the spot. Once I was in costume and the music started, I got into character and completely enjoyed the process. I was wrapped in the costume with almost 100 pins. However, I was so comfortable in it. The only issue was that they wouldn’t let me use the washroom. So for two nights, I wasn’t given anything to eat or drink.
What is the Anusha Dandekar style statement?
I’m very moody in terms of style. For instance, if I’m feeling tomboyish, I would dress up in baggy pants and a t-shirt. When I feel glamorous, I prefer flaunting a pretty dress. And when I don’t really feel anything, I just roll out of the bed and walk out of the house, like I did today.
What’s your fashion tips to beat the heat this summer?
This summer, it is better to stick to loose clothing; nothing clingy. Avoid lycra and make-up. The heat makes make-up look very patchy and unattractive. You could use sunscreen and lip balm instead. Ensure that you keep your hair tied, especially if you have long hair. For men, fitted t-shirts are a strict no-no.
According to you, what are the characteristics the present-day VJ must have?
The present-day VJ should be confident. I know that’s what most people say, but it’s true. He must be spontaneous. For instance, in case of interviews especially when nothing is scripted, he should know how to handle it smartly. He shouldn’t fake it. Or rather, should I say that he cannot fake it? Twenty years ago, a VJ could get away with it but today’s audience is street-smart. Most importantly, he should simply be himself.
What do you see yourself doing five years from now?
I don’t know where I see myself tomorrow (Laughs). I don’t like life being predictable. That’s exactly why I didn’t take up a 9 – 5 desk job. Every morning I just want to wake up and do what I love doing.
After music, what’s next?
Fashion definitely. My life has always been influenced by it. So you can expect fashion lines and businesses. I always knew that there was a very creative entrepreneur in me. I just haven’t let her out yet.
- Favourite album: Rihanna’s; I like every single song of hers
- Favourite cuisine: Maharashtrian
- Favourite show: “Family Guy”. I even enjoy watching, “Is Pyaar Ko Kya Naam Doon” on Star Plus.
- One celebrity you would like to star in your album: Enrique Iglesias, anytime and every time.
- Favourite drink: Coca cola
- Favourite VJ: Ranvijay
- Favourite holiday destination: Still discovering.
Payal is a II Year MA Communication student at MOP Vaishnav College for Women.
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