After winning Nach Baliye 3, how confident are you about leading your Mast Kalandar Boys’ team to victory in Zara Nachke Dikha?
I am pretty confident that we, Mast Kalandar Boys, will win the show. We are chilled out and united in whatever we do. Our trick is that we don’t try too hard. We have a nice blend of being relaxed and I think it is working for us. On paper, the girls look the stronger team, but we are catching up in terms of performances. The results are showing.
Do you feel you could have done better in any of the performances on Zara Nachke Dikha?
Yes, there was one in the solo performance round, where I danced to Beera from Raavan. It was a short week and we hurried a bit in preparing the act. I’m not feeling bad about the act, I am proud of it. But I wish it had clicked with the judges. Having said that, I am never content with anything. The day you are content, it’s the end.
Your girlfriend Sanjeeda Sheikh is in the opposite team, Massakali Girls. Has the on-screen competition ever led to tension in your personal life?
No, not at all. I am very proud of the way she has been dancing on the show. I am happy for her. We never let our professional life interfere with our personal life.
How do you deal with the stress factor that is present in such a competitive dance show?
I get stressed before every single performance. Simply performing on stage is not that stressful, but doing so in a reality show where you are going to be judged is quite taxing. I rehearse for three to four hours every day. There is nothing I can do to not be stressed. Then I just go on stage, dance and give it my best shot.
Is it true that you collapsed on the sets after a performance?
No, I did not collapse. I was just very tired after the act. I merely lied down after the song, so probably some people thought I had collapsed.
How did you get into TV shows?
My first TV show was Kahaani Ghar Ghar ki. Those people noticed me in my first movie Yeh Kya Ho Raha Hai and in some commercials that I had done back then. So I was just taken onboard without an audition. In a short span, I have made a name for myself. I just have to keep moving ahead now.
Would you like to do more dance reality shows?
If a big, interesting show with a good concept comes up, then I will do it. I am not in a hurry and I can even wait for years for such a concept. I’m not desperate. I’m glad about where I am today. I’d rather be a star in TV than do a stupid bit role in a film. I am not dying to do movies.
Some people claim reality shows are rigged. What is your take on it?
I don’t know about any other reality shows, but I can comment on the ones I have participated in — Nach Baliye 3 and Zara Nachke Dikha. Nobody has ever told me what to do, or say. I have done what I’ve wished to.
How did you meet Sanjeeda?
I met Sanjeeda at a friend’s party. And like every other couple, we too have our share of small fights. But we are secure and sure about each other. And as individuals too, we are confident people.
In today’s cut-throat competition, what do you think is essential to survive?
Work hard and be relaxed. I would advice people to not overdo things. That’s my mantra.