She is multi-talented and every bit as experimental, tasteful and endearing. Auritra Ghosh who garnered praise for her role in the movie Dharam Sankat Mein talks to us about her growing up years, her road to success and her brand new getaway venture called ‘Pause and Effect’.
M Cream is more of an independent film. What was your experience like working on it?
M Cream has been doing the rounds of the the international festivals this year. It’s a youth-centric coming-of-age film that poses a lot of questions; there’s a constant juxtaposition between what’s happening in the outside world and what’s happening inside us. Our director [Agneya Singh] had a very grand vision for the film and he decided not to compromise. The film tries to portray what’s going on in someone’s head. It’s an acid trip that the four characters in the movie experience. He has tried to capture the different minds and psyches during the experience. The film wrapped up in 2013 and has been travelling since. It won the best feature film award at the Rhode Island Film Festival, 2014 besides which we have won a lot of technical awards. I personally love the fact that the film makes you question a lot of your beliefs. I feel that the film will not have that big a reach, it’s biggest challenge being the language.
You are trained in so many dance forms. While growing up did you spend all your time pursuing the arts and practicing instead of playing with friends?
I started taking Kathak lessons three times a week when I was eight years old. Then it stopped for a while and education took precedence. When I started dancing again, I started with Western, Jazz and Ballet. My parents were liberal and never forced me to do anything although they made it clear that I had to have a degree. My dad’s an Engineer and I studied Information Systems.
I was a good student for years and then in 10th and 11th I discovered friends, music and dance. I was allowed to go out and explore, watch movies, listen to different kinds of music with reasonable limitations. Honestly, this generation can sit at home and make connections but we were a little lost back then. Colour TV was the biggest thing while we were growing up. Today handling someone’s social media is a great career!
Who has been your favourite co-star in ads or films so far?
I would say Dia Mirza for sure. She is just wonderful. She’s one of those people who is always giving love and being there for someone. She taught me a lot through her approach and attitude towards life. She produced Love Breakups Zindagi and she was always very positive other than guiding me through how to constantly deal with the issues of shoots and dates. I also had too much fun with working with Imaad and Ira while shooting for M Cream.
If you had to describe your experience representing India at the Fontys Academy International Dance Festival in Netherlands, what would it be?
Fontys is an international academy in Netherlands and they have an annual festival. They had a special ten year anniversary and so instead of four countries; they called people from many countries including London, Eastern and Western Europe, Vietnam, Ghana, India and China. My work and audience back then was limited and until Fontys happened, I was a dancer who would execute somebody else’s movements but after coming back from there I became more of an artist.
What is your biggest strength as a person and as a professional actor?
Other than dance, I was into painting; my mother was a sitar player and sister took singing lessons. My father was probably the only one with no creative inclination. He can draw straight lines without a ruler and that is his biggest talent! (laughs) Jokes aside, I love my dad to bits and he taught me to be strong and follow my dreams.
I began with dance and then moved to theatre and then films. Success is relative but I feel it requires a lot of persistence such as waking up every morning and telling yourself to go and do it. That’s my biggest strength; it’s my struggle with myself. There are days when I feel I can’t do it but absolutely wonderful things come to fruition like when a movie I have been a part of is released. Everything sort of culminates to that point and makes it worth it.
What is Pause And Effect about?
It is a month and a half old. I woke up one day and decided that all these ideas I have, need to be put into action. A part of me wanted to act and perform but another part of me wanted to bring together different disciplines of art. My friend and I choreographed a project at the Bandra Festival. It was site specific and community specific. Pause and Effect is a bigger umbrella under which we bring smaller elements into focus. Our first project was organizing a getaway to Dahanu. I curated it in such a way that it brought the physical, mental and emotional elements in sync. People who came to this getaway could enjoy Yoga, Meditation, Capoeira and Karate. It was an active weekend. We took special care about the food being organic and fresh farm grown.
Some memorable television commercials of Auritra for you:
Hero Glamor TVC – Nain Mattaka Laga Re:
Nokia Pocket dance:
Dabur Vatika TVC:
Nestlé Alpino commercial:
Tata Sky – Poochne mein kya jaata hai:
Diva by La Opala – Khwabon ki Tashtari:
Omore Uth Chocolate Cone TVC (some for the neighbors too!):
UTI MF – Better half makes a #BehtarZindagi:
The most searched actress of Google‘s Reunion ad: