Two exceptional artists pursuing musical careers in two neighbouring cities in the GTA until their paths cross. With that begins the start of a friendship rooted in mutual respect, love for their craft and the journey leading to Bollywood.
Also, whenever Bollywood Monster Mashup (BMM) announces its line-up, there she is. So, Toronto Desi Diaries (TDD) asked Vikas Kohli, founder/artistic director, BMM to talk about Jonita Gandhi/ vocalist and well known Bollywood singer.
And he obliges.
TDD. When did you first meet Jonita?
Vikas: Years ago, a promoter was putting on a talent competition and asked me to be one of the judges. After a few acts, a young singer did a Capella performance. The other judges clearly knew the singer because when they gave their critique, they referred to her by her first name, Jonita. When my turn came, I simply said, “that sounded great” because I thought all this singer needs is some good songs.
Sometime after that we ended up working on getting some original material and recordings together, but both of us got too busy. Fortunately, amazing musicians like A.R. Rahman and Sonu Nigam recognized her talent and the rest is history.
The last time I saw Jonita, a group of us were having Punjabi style pizza at her parent’s place.
TDD. What was it about her that struck you? First impressions?
Vikas: It’s always refreshing when you work with a singer that is professionally trained, understands both western and Indian music and doesn’t need autotune!
TDD. Should young creative desis stuck studying business and science ditch all that to pursue music like Jonita?
Vikas: Well, if you’re “stuck” in anything you should consider a change. Music is amazing but not the only thing. Good business sense is critical because artists are fundamentally entrepreneurs. And science is just plain awesome. When I’m not working in my studio, my getaway is reading about chaos theory, behavioural economics, physics and anything that gets us closer to Star Trek 🙂
TDD. What makes Jonita tick?
Vikas: She shines when giving a live performance. It’s more than her voice. It’s also her ability to engage the crowd because that’s where her heart is. She cares about giving an amazing show, and she does every
TDD. Who’s got the crazy, untamed side, Jonita or yourself?
Vikas: Isn’t everyone a little bit crazy?
8) What can folks expect at #BollywoodMonster Mashup (BMM) this year?
Vikas: Thousands of happy people eating delicious food, getting free Bollywood dance lessons, having fun in our free KidZone, and hundreds of the best artists, comedians, a VIP reception, andthree massive free concerts.
We’ve gone crazy this year with Jonita flying in straight from the IIFAs, Kamal Khan famous for Ishq Sufiana flying in straight from taping the Voice of Punjab finale, and Aakanksha Sharma famous for Sunny Leone’s voice in Main Adhoora for her first ever performance in Canada.
And special Canada 150 programming, including three massive orchestras performing hit Bollywood and Canadian songs. There’s too much to talk about, so find out more on our website BollywoodMonsterMashup.com.
And Desi Diaries readers get a chance to meet our Bollywood stars, get discounts on hotels, and other free offers when they go to BollywoodMonsterMashup.com and use coupon code Desi . Why? Because we love our audience.
Gee, thanks, BMM.
Re: Who’s crazier? Our bet is on Vikas, because we can’t think of a single person that reads chaos theory for recreation, except for the fictitious Dr. Sheldon Cooper ~Toronto Desi Diaries.
#BMM events will kick off Friday, July 21. Jonita will take over the stage, Saturday, July 22. Finale events start at 6 p.m., but Celebration Square will be abuzz from 2 p.m. onward.