Posts Tagged ‘aishwarya rai’

BizAsia (Shiamak at IIFA) March '14

Dance of Madness
By Daily Post
    • India
  • 4/29/2013 1:03:38 PM


Sarika Sharma
Choreographer Shiamak Davar says that even though people loved Dil Toh Pagal Hai, looks back and feels there is so much more he could have done
Shiamak Davar is a keen observer. A sharp learner. How else does one of India’s top choreographers grow?
“I find myself learning every day, getting inspired by everything around me and interpreting that into dance movements,” says Shiamak, who shot to fame for his choreography of Dil Toh Pagal Hai. The film won him a National Award. Each film, henceforth, has been his journey. Every move has helped him inch towards perfection…
Twenty years… He’s seen Bollywood change. “Choreography has become more stylised and glamorous,” he says.
He has seen himself grow. “Dance, as an art, keeps evolving, and as a choreographer one must keep evolving as well. One thing that has remained constant in my work is originality. Each piece I choreograph represents me. So, over the years, I have matured and so has my choreography. Even though people loved Dil Toh Pagal Hai and found my work much ahead of its times, I look back and think there is so much more I could have done!”
And you can only criticise yourself when you are truly growing. Shiamak’s I’m-my-worst-critic stance makes him what he is. 
Davar’s repertoire includes dance-based films such Taal, Rab Ne Bana Do Jodi and Kisna. It also includes choreographing Dhoom Again (Dhoom 2) that was awarded the ‘Most stylish song in a film’ at the MTV Style Awards 2007 and an opulent party scene for Tom Cruise-Paula Patton starrer Mission: Impossible—Ghost Protocol. 
We ask him if dance moves are more contemporary these days, and also, less forced into films. He agrees. He agrees that there has always been a western influence. That dance sequences are integrated better into the storyline. But… he pauses. “The way the video is shot now is more of an edit job than a choreographer’s work. There is no continuity in movement like there used to be. Now every look, every step later, there is a cut. So even though the end product is great, as a choreographer, I feel it doesn’t do justice.”
The conversation deviates… from Bollywood and Shiamak to Psy and Gangnam Style. We want to know what Shiamak feels about his dance… “People like anything that makes them smile. Gangnam Style is catchy and people love the absurdity, it is fun! Who doesn’t like fun? The signature step is simple and everyone can do it. And what is important is it is original. That’s why people like it!”
And the host of dance reality shows? Are they not more about the act and props and less about dance? Shiamak says the props and sets should be there only to accentuate the dance, not a way to cover up the lack of choreography. Also, he doesn’t feel that the dance-based reality shows here as any sort of benchmark.
“Most of them are copies and lack originality,” he shrugs. He says they might be a great platform to be recognised as it gives an opportunity to dance enthusiasts from interiors of the country to show their skills on screen. But, once the 15 minutes of fame are over, then what?” he asks
Shiamak says there is lack of technique, no training and no guidance once the show is over. It is important to encourage dance as a disciplinary form, right from the school level, he says. 
“Kids are more receptive to the process of learning in their formative years; so, the earlier dance education begins for them, the better,” says he who has a programme called Shiamak Dance Education running in many schools across the country.
Shiamak has trained the likes of Bollywood actors Shahid Kapoor, Varun Dhawan, Vidya Balan, Ruslan Mumtaz and actor Shah Rukh Khan’s wife Gauri. Ask him who is his favourite, and it’s undoubtedly Madhuri Dixit, whom he trained in Dil Toh Pagal hai. “Of course, there is Aishwarya who I’ve seen from her Miss India days. I love Deepika, such a talent and a pleasure to choreograph,” he smiles. 

 Huffington Post Canada

Posted: 04/04/2013 2:33 pm

When dancers take the stage at the Pacific Coliseum and BC Place at the Times of India Film Awards in Vancouver this week, it won’t be the Harlem Shake we’ll see. Not Gangnam style, not even Indian Classical style. It will be Shiamak style.

Named for Shiamak Davar, dance master to some of the biggest names in the commercial Hindi cinema industry known as Bollywood, it may be best described as a fusion of ballet, contemporary, and some of the most basic, yet challenging, body movements associated with the ancient Indian practice of yoga. Its essence includes strong core movement and earthy, primitive performances.

As with all dance, the key is to make it look easy, fluid, graceful in front of the audience without letting anyone know how much your muscles have been screaming, or how grueling practice has been.

And he’ll be looking for perfection in those performances Thursday and Saturday night from the likes of superstars Abishek Bachchan, Aishwarya Rai, Shah Rukh Khan and Katrina Kaif.

The pressure is on. Fatigue etched on everyone’s face in rehearsals will be replaced with big smiles on stage. For the younger amateur dancers, some who are local with no experience with Shiamak style, (he divides his time between Mumbai and North Vancouver) it is the pressure of learning and remembering all the right moves on the biggest stage they’ve performed on to date.

For Davar, it’s a different expectation and pressure. TOIFA represents a homecoming. Students from the dance schools he began setting up two decades ago are coming from four continents to join him. A-list stars who created unforgettable performances on the silver screen thanks to his choreography are arriving to reprise the hits. And he has to deliver.

But the performance gene is in his genealogy. Shiamak Davar was born into one of Bollywood’s first families, the great-nephew of stars who were silent-film era pioneers in Indian cinema. His great aunt? A half-Greek, half-British woman named Nadia, or “Fearless Nadia,” who left her mark with early movie-goers by running on top of moving trains — 50 years before Daniel Craig’s 007 did it in “Skyfall,” I might add.

In their book, Indian Cinema, the Bollywood Saga, authors Dinesh Raheja and Jitendra Kothari describe Nadia as “Hindi film’s first and only female action star” who “predated the feminist movement as an independent minded woman.”

Apparently, Davar inherited that independent mindedness. In a family where acting was in the blood, he gravitated towards music, singing, and dancing. His parents insisted on a university education first, so his dance training did not begin in childhood, but in his early 20s. While his parents were ultimately supportive, others in the family threatened to disown him for gravitating towards “effeminate” dance.

But he didn’t care. Innovators are used to scrutiny and criticism. New York critics were sometimes hard on Bob Fosse, Martha Graham was accused of staying on stage well past her prime.

Instead, Davar struck out to London, studying with award-winning choreographer Chet Walker. It was a student-guru relationship that would eventually lead him to the U.S — and the chance to work with Debbie Allen, famous, for among other things, being the lead choreographer on the 1980s film and TV hit, “Fame.”

Davar established his first dance studio in India in the 1990s. At the time, lithe, toned dance students wearing leotards were considered indecent among Mumbai’s chattering classes. His first students were his friends. But eventually one of his disciples caught the starry-eye of an up and coming Bollywood star: Shah Rukh Khan. Khan would go on to marry her. Davar would go on to choreograph 1997’s “Dil To Pagal Hai,” which in turn would go on to become a major hit.

His successes have since included choreographing more Bollywood blockbusters: Taal, Kisna, and Yuvvraaj. He’s designed and arranged dances for both the 2006 and 2010 opening ceremonies of the Commonwealth Games.

What are the greatest lessons he’s learned along the way? “Compassion and kindness,” he says. “You have to give back.” He does that through his charities, including the Victory Arts Foundation.

This week, Davar’s journey takes 10,000 more carefully choreographed steps towards his international success. You would think the experience would be all ho-hum by now, but no.

“TOIFA is very special to me,” he says. “It’s happening in my second home.”

And there’s another reason: his 90-year-old mother, the professor who forced her son to study economics before studying dance, will be coming from India to watch.

“She’s coming all the way. I’ll be performing myself.”

Expect the hits. But great-aunt Nadia, no running atop moving trains.

An Unforgettable Meeting in Vancouver!

Spotted- An ‘Unforgettable’ meet between Shiamak Davar, Abhishek Bachchan and Aishwarya Rai Bachchan in Vancouver, Canada. Shiamak has known Aishwarya from her Miss World days, a title that she went on to win, carrying on the association through Taal, Dhoom 2, the Unforgettable Tour and her recent breathtaking performance at Miss India 2013. Their camaraderie carries on even as they meet in Vancouver!


Times of India:

Navneet Kaur Dhillon is the new Pond’s Femina Miss India

The writer has posted comments on this articleBella Jaisinghani & Sharmila Ganesan RamBella Jaisinghani & Sharmila Ganesan Ram, TNN | Mar 25, 2013, 12.47 AM IST



Meet the winners of Pond's Femina Miss India 2013

Beauties From Patiala, Visakhapatnam And Mumbai Walk Away With Tiaras At Pond’s Femina Miss India 2013.

All that glittered at Pond’s Femina Miss India 2013 on Sunday evening was gold indeed. In the golden jubilee year of the pageant, this colour radiated throughout the evening—from the theme to the detail in the contestants’ gowns.

Finally, Navneet Kaur Dhillon (20), the daughter of an army officer from Patiala, was crowned Miss India 2013; after Army Public School, Ambala, she attended Patiala’s Punjabi University. The first runner-up was Sobhita Dhulipala of Visakhapatnam. The 20-year-old ex-student of Vishakha Valley School currently studies at HR College, Mumbai.

The city is also the present home of Zoya Afroz (18), who was the second runner-up; originally from Lucknow, the Land of Nawabs, Zoya, an actor, studied at RN Shah High School and then Mithibai College.

Faced with a rather morbid question of what her one regret would be if she were to die the following day, Navneet gathered her wits quickly and said, “The only thing I would regret would be not having done as much for society as I would like to. Issues of women’s empowerment and child labour and other social evils are a big concern.”

Amid cheers, Miss India 2000 Priyanka Chopra told the three to appreciate the crown. “It stays with you forever. It changes you from who you could have been to who you are going to be,” she said.

This year’s pageant, held at Yashraj Studios, Andheri, marked a double milestone, given that 2013 celebrates the centenary of Indian cinema as well as the 50th year of the Miss India contest. In this span of time, India has won 34 international titles — second only to Venezuela. Host Manish Paul opened the evening with a nostalgic audiovisual tracing the golden history of the contest. From Nutan, Meher Castelino Mistry, Persis Khambatta and Zeenat Aman, down to Aishwarya Rai Bachchan, Sushmita Sen and Priyanka Chopra, the winners have done the country proud.

The crowns the winners wear are laden with significance. The Miss India crown bears a peacock feather in the centre, symbolizing the graceful, proud national bird of India. The tiara worn by the first runner-up derives inspiration from ‘the curves of a woman’, albeit in a metaphorical sense. The curves represent the ups and downs that confront a woman on her journey to the top. The crown for the second runner-up is modelled along the ‘ladder of success’, showing the levels a contestant has to cross to win the pageant.
The event started with host Manish Paul quoting an Urdu verse celebrating womanhood. As the event’s judges, Karan Johar, Asin, Shiamak Davar, Yuvraj Singh, Ritu Kumar, Chitrangada Singh and John Abraham, entered, their fans rose and cheered.

And then, kitted out in black, ivory and flame, the contestants, aged 18-25, walked down the ramp and introduced themselves. They had come from all over the country—Assam’s Dibrugarh to Orissa’s Bhubaneswar, Patna to Pune, and the metro cities. Among them were models, actors and even an aeronautical engineer and a yoga trainer.

Comedy trio Riteish Deshmukh, Vivek Oberoi and Aftab Shivdasani pretended to gatecrash the event to ease the nerves of the women onstage. They performed a ribald act before moving on to a dance medley. Miss India has long been known as a passport to cinema and there were no pretensions this time. All 23 finalists wore ethnic Bharatanatyam costumes or ghagra-cholis and danced to a robust ‘Radha Teri Chunri’ as if they were ready for the next logical step.

A special award called woman of substance was given to Urmi Basu for her work in the field of prostitution and trafficking. It was presented by Miss India 2012 Vanya Mishra.

For more on Shiamak Davar @ Pond’s Femina Miss India Click on the links below!
  Femina Miss India 2013

Aishwarya Rai Bachchan is now a better dancer

Shiamak Davar gives full marks to Aishwarya Rai Bachchan

    • By Manjusha Radhakrishnan, Senior Reporter
    • Published: 10:19 March 25, 2013


  • Image Credit: Supplied picture
  • In a picture posting on his twitter account, choreographer Shiamak Davar poses with Aishwariya Rai Bachchan during the Miss India finals on Sunday, March 24, 2013. Davar choreographed Rai Bachchan’s return to the stage, where she performed a flamenco-inflected dance from her film “Guzaarish”.

Ace Bollywood choreographer Shiamak Davar, who orchestrated Aishwarya Rai Bachchan’s stage return on Sunday in Femina Miss India 2013 contest in Mumbai, describes her as his star pupil.

“She was magnificent on stage tonight … she was my student before she became Miss World and she has grown tremendously. It was lovely to watch her dance again,” said Davar in an interview with tabloid! over the phone on Sunday night.

Rai Bachchan, who is on a self-imposed sabbatical from films after giving birth to her daughter Aaradhya in November 2011, brought a Spanish flavour to Miss India contest, using flamenco steps to bring to life the song Udi Udi from Guzaarish. With lips painted red, a black tight bodice, skirt with ruffles and black heels, her return to the spotlight was smooth.

“I have known her for more than a decade now. She has matured and has become a better dancer now. She’s one of the most professional and the warmest person I know. Ask me any day and I will say Aishwarya and Abhishek are my favourite couple,” said Davar.