Actor-singer Monica Dogra has earned praises for portraying unusual characters in her films.It seems she purposely takes up a certain kind of work but that’s not the case. “I wish I could say it’s a strategy but that’s not true. I have a very specific artistic identity that doesn’t just fit into any mould. I end up attracting very specific kind of people and have a specific audience,” says Monica, who has been part of films such as filmmaker Kiran Rao’s Dhobi Ghat (2011).
“Be it Dhobi Ghat or David (2012) and working with directors like Bejoy Nambiar (director of David), when you zoom out now, you can understand why I am perfect for all these things,” adds Monica, who recently performed at a gig in the Capital.
The singer, who is a part of the alternative, electronic music duo Shaa’ir and Func, says it was a delight to perform in the city. It’s not only due to the love Delhi audience showers on her that she loves to perform here, but also because being in Delhi brings back her childhood memories. Dogra says, “I remember Delhi like a hazy, beautiful place since it was the first big city in India that I ever explored… I have family in Delhi and Jammu but Jammu isn’t that big. So, I loved coming to Delhi and exploring it. I have some great memories from here.”
Considering her choice of roles, she comes across as a super-confident actor, who doesn’t feel the need to change herself to fit into conventional Indian cinema. But Dogra feels otherwise: “I think I’m wired differently. And when I told a girl in the show business, who’s a friend, that I have self-funded a lot of my work that speaks honestly about socio-political issues. And that I stick my neck out, which most celebrities are not known to do. She just looked at me and said, ‘Why do you do it?’ It was interesting because I don’t even think about stuff like that, I don’t know why (I do it).”