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Dancing diva

A tete-e-tete with the Iranian diva on her journey from ramp to music videos to films



Photo: K. Ramesh Babu

AN IRANIAN who grew up in Norway, moved on to Australia, for studies and modelling, and now in India, thanks to her agency, she is the most sought after face in the glamour industry today in the country. Her barely one year old portfolio here reads walking the ramp for top labels to doing music videos— Chadti jawani, Rama Rama to the recent Chod do aanchal and films— from a song appearance in Rudraksh (Ishq khudai) to playing Sheena, a woman of 2004 in Raj Kaushal's Shaadi ka laddoo. And she is Negar Khan, truly a reflection of her role— holding masters in International Business with an added knowledge of eight world languages, Hindi being the ninth "ek aur language. Khud se sikha hai cheh mahinon mein (It was like learning one more language. I have learnt Hindi by myself in six months)," she says. But unlike the role, "I won't get lost with choices that Sheena makes. People make mistakes when they lose their touch with the ground," she says during her recent visit to the twin cities as part of the promotion for the feel good popcorn flick.

But what makes her enthused apart from her role in the film is the song Chal hatt that incidentally has been aired in its animation avatar on Nickelodeon. "I have children approaching me to sing the song. I feel good about the animation concept since I have been a fan of Roger Rabbit myself when I was a child. But honestly the song picturisation in the film demanded a lot of energy," she says.

Having indulged in rowing, hockey and ballet through her formative years, dancing comes naturally to her. "I didn't have to practise dancing. You have to have the rhythm in you," she says. And she thoroughly liked working for her debut music video Chadti jawani. "We had five models in the music video and being able to catch the attention of audience was an achievement for me," she recollects now as she has a flood of offers, music videos, films and item numbers. "See they are three different things. I would keep doing music videos since dancing is my passion along with my films and song appearances," she says, currently working on a few flicks. On choosing work, "it is about the character I am asked to play and the story, that should be good just like you choose a good education, one that will come back to you with higher returns," she explains. "I always tell my younger sisters to have a strong academic foundation first that opens up the mind to make right choices and there is something to fall back on. At the end of the day, I am not what I am because I am lucky, but because of my ability to make contemplated choices followed by hard work," she reflects.

A level headedness that will definitely silence the grapevine that sniggers `import'.

SYEDA FARIDA

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