With a motley crew of neighbourhood aunties, young kids and curious passers-by cheering her on, Madhuri Dixit swirled her hips seductively to the tune of
Ek, do, teen...
Except that without her make-up and blonde wig, this Madhuri could pass of for a regular Joe, literally.
As part of the celebrations preceding yesterday’s gay pride parade, the Dancing Queen event at the Carter Road amphitheatre, Bandra, had men dressed in full drag, shimmying to a mix of Bollywood numbers and traditional folk songs. With full-time day jobs, mostly involving progressive work within the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transvestite (LGBT) community, these performers were only too happy to let their inner divas out at a public event. And as far as Bollywood goes, it was clear that the buck stopped at Madhuri.
“There’s no doubt that Madhuri is still the most popular inspiration for drag performers in India. The dancers chose tunes from
and her comeback movie
,” says Sibi, organiser. “And, the first performer’s stage name is also Madhuri.”
No offence to Mrs Dixit-Nene, but the stage Madhuri, dressed in the actor’s signature brightly-coloured skirt and gold bustier, could have given the real one a run for her money, if the two were to ever enter a look-alikes’ competition.
Madhuri over Sheila
Ask why more recent hit numbers like
Sheila ki jawaani...
didn’t make it to the playlist and pat comes the response.
“We would have liked to perform
Sheila ki jawaani
Munni badnaam hui
, but keeping in mind the sentiments of the crowd because it’s an open space which attracts people of all ages, we decided to stick to less seductive numbers,” explains Abeena Aher, programme manager with Project Pechan by day and dancing queen by night.
“These events allow us to interact with the general public, something that we don’t really get to do even during the pride march,” explains Sibi, organiser. “The crowd has been mostly encouraging. We even had a group of older women who decided to finish up with their evening walk quickly so that they could catch ring-side seats at the event.”