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Small-size wonders

While many grown-ups vie to be a part of the glamour-struck world of entertainment, these cherubic little children get offers right at their doorstep. HT City talks to child prodigies from the region and shines the torch on budding talent.

chandigarh Updated: Nov 14, 2013 11:08 IST

Rajveer Singh Thakur, 3, Chandigarh

He is a tiny dynamite. The word ‘action’ gets Rajveer Singh Thakur going, literally! Thanks to his looks — which are similar to actor Emraan Hashmi’s — Rajveer landed the role of Emraan’s son in upcoming movie White Lies, directed by Oscar winning Bosnian director Danis Tanovic. Tiny tot Rajveer, all of three, was shortlisted from amongst 500 entries by a citybased production house called Friday Arts Productions.

“After sending his five-minute video clip, we were called to Patiala, where the crew had to choose between Rajveer and another child. After clicking his pictures with the stars, they realised he was perfect for the film,” says Ravinder Thakur, Rajveer’s father, a banker. His mother, Rupal, who is an aviation trainer, adds, “He mingled with the team instantly. Funnily, he gets mistaken for a girl easily. So, while Emraan loved to cuddle him, Rajveer would prefer to be with the female lead, Geetanjali Thapa. Going by the film’s dialogues, he would keep calling her Amma and would just keep sitting in her arms, even when she would rest in her vanity van. Even today, when he sees Emraan, he refers to him as Abba.”

While Rajveer is a confident child, his parents are a tad bit worried. “When he started shooting, we were a bit apprehensive, since we had absolutely no idea whether he would be able to act. We thought he was too young. But to our surprise, once the camera started rolling, he took fancy to it,” quips Rupal.
For the 10-day shoot, Rajveer wore Pathani-style kurta pyjamas in different colours and was paid `2,000 per day along with being paid for the travel and stay at Patiala.

Sarth Vats, 9, Patiala

Music knows no age, it’s all about passion and dedication. In the heart of the royal city where the genre of Patiala gharana was born, new-age prodigy Sarth Vats, nine, has added a new dimension to classical raagas, for he plays them on the guitar — a rare fusion which leaves the audience spellbound.

Coming from a family of doctors, the classical rockstar discovered his passion for guitar when he was eight years old, while learning to play the Casio with his elder brother. He shares, "My only aim in life is to be a rockstar, music comes naturally to me. Life for me is all about music."

Sarth is Patiala’s youngest guitarist and was recently adjudged the winner of National Singing Talent Hunt, an event organised by Sangam Kala group. He won in the non-film song category in sub-junior group at Sirhind on September 1.

After bagging the first position, the little musician went on to enthrall classical music lovers in Delhi on September 28 at the National Railway Museum auditorium. On June 23, he earned himself a golden opportunity to perform in front of legendary musician Pandit Subhash Ghosh at a function held at the language department. The event was jointly organised by the Indian Council of Cultural Relations and Maa Sharda Patiala Gharana Sangeet Sabha. Sarth says, “Words of appreciation coming from the legend’s mouth are more worthy than any award.”

The guitarist had also performed live for the Australian radio on August 15.

Bhavnoor Kaur, 12, Patiala

Such is the hunger to script her name on the wall of fame in the music world, that she has been taking classes at the Panchkula centre of the Trinity College of Music, UK, every fortnight for over a year. Bhavnoor Kaur, 12, has also been taking vocal classical training at Pracheen Kala Kendra, Chandigarh to hone her talent, which is in abundance in the little girl. The little genius, who belongs to Patiala, is also a national level painter and a classical dancer.

Bhavnoor also has a love for dancing, which she got into when she was seven years old, apart from a fondness for the canvas, which she picked at the age of eight. The little bundle of talent was also awarded a scholarship for painting by the Centre for Cultural Resource and Training, New Delhi, in the year 2012, which she will continue to receive until she is 20.

Bhavnoor has bagged various prizes at the district, regional and national level dance competitions. She was declared ‘Nikka Star’ in the Nikka Star Dance Competition organised at the state level in October in 2008. In a winter festival called All India One Act Play, she bagged the first prize in the solo dance category. Bhavnoor has even performed for the Sadhna Channel, New Delhi, in Multi Talent Show in September 2009. The little girl says her mantra is to be a master of all trades. “I believe that every soul is blessed with many talents, but only a few discover and harness them,” she says.

Avneet Kaur, 11, Jalandhar

Avneet Kaur, a student of Class 6 in a Jalandhar school, is already showing her acting skills in a lead role in the TV serial Ek Mutthi Aasman that airs on Zee TV, where Avneet is playing a pampered child of a rich family.

Playing the role of a girl named Pooki, the child actor is seen along with the ’90s actress Shilpa Shirodhkar, who plays the role of her maid. Avneet has previously played a lead role in the serial Meri Maa on Life OK and also performed on reality TV dance show Dance India Dance, where she got selected in the top three and from where she entered the entertainment industry.

Aspiring to be like Madhuri Dixit, Avneet quips, “I want to be a dancer and an actor like Madhuri Dixit.” Last seen on Jhalak Dikhhla Jaa Season-5 aired on Colors wherein she was the youngest contestant and paired with child actor Darsheel Safari, the little girl even got a second chance on another reality TV show called Dance Ke Superstars aired on Zee TV, where Avneet was in the team of dance challengers.

Apart from serials, Avneet has been seen in various advertisements as well. She is currently coming on air on channel Zee Q, with a news bulletin called The Weekly Rap.

Anmol Jaswal, 14, Jalandhar

Anmol Jaswal was one of the finalists in the latest series of Indian Idol Juniors aired on Sony TV. Having got selected from amongst thousands of budding singers in the age group of five to 15 years, this 14-year-old boy from Jalandhar made it to the top four.

Tutored in classical music by his father, Anmol says he belongs to a family of music lovers. “My father sings for the Doordarshan and All India Radio,” he adds with pride. Not only was Anmol praised amply by the three judges of the show - playback singer Shreya Ghoshal and music directors Vishal and Shekhar - the nightingale of India Lata Mangeshkar also found his voice to be the best amongst all in the show.

“Lata ji posted on her twitter, saying: ‘The kids are singing really well, especially Anmol. It is unfair that only one winner is selected in such shows. I request the team of Indian Idol Junior to give away awards to the top five; this will make them happy and interested to pursue singing as a career,’” Anmol says. Anmol, who bagged the ‘first performer of the day award’ in this season that carried a fixed deposit award money of R1lakh, the amateur singer was also selected amongst the top 10 young singers on Zee TV’s Sa Re Ga Ma Pa Li’l Champs in 2009. Recently, he was seen in a Children’s Day special episode of Kaun Banega Crorepati that was aired on November 9.

First Published: Nov 14, 2013 11:03 IST