Meet some of the new faces that brighten up the small screen...
Maria and Tessa
THEY TALK and talk... They make you laugh. They howl. They scream. They even bore you with their antics. You may like them. You are free to hate them. But you can never ignore them. With phone-in programmes becoming the staple diet of couch potatoes, anchors have become hot property. The new generation is aware of the perks attached to such careers. They know that there is more to anchoring than babbling.
Tessa, one of the popular anchors, got interested in compering at a very young age. After completing her Class 12th, in New Delhi, she came to Kerala with the dream of making it big in showbiz. This yearning, coupled with the support from her parents, has helped her become what she is now. Tessa started her career with the Citi Cable. "After doing the programme for six to seven weeks, I overcame my stage fright. Then I moved on to Kairali to do their programme, `Sing and Win'. Then I did `Winners Encyclopaedia' for Surya.
She was the anchor of the Kairali programme, `Hello, Good Evening', when she got an offer to act in the Mammooty-starrer, `Pattalam'.
Nikhil, who comperes for `Sing and Win', was never interested in being an anchor. He refused the offer at first, only to agree later.
Compering needs a lot of impromptu talking. "My plus point, I would say, is my ability to speak. I can yak for hours together. This has helped me a lot. I do not enjoy recorded programmes. I am at my best in live shows," says Tessa.
But compering needs some intelligent talking too. Says Amritha, one of the comperes of the programme, `Suprabhatam' (Asianet), "I was always interested in `Suprabhatham'. I read a lot, so I thought it would be best for me to anchor this programme." In many such programmes, the subject for the day is decided only at the time of the shoot.
"You should be able to talk on any subject," adds Amritha. Agrees Anushree, co-anchor of the programme. "I read newspapers regularly and talk and mingle a lot. It helps me learn a lot. And with help from the cameraman and producer, things go smoothly for me," she says.
Rimi Tomy was already a known figure when she started compering for `Silver Storm Safari'. Her songs in `Meesa Madhavan' had been widely acclaimed. After singing in Telugu movies and three other Malayalam movies, Rimi is now waiting for the release of her latest film, `Fifty-fifty'.
It is interesting to know that all these girls and boys come to this field with the support and blessings of their parents. Nikhil's father was a movie producer. Ranjini Jose, compere of `Dum Dum Dum Pi Pi Pi', also has a similar story to tell. Her father is a financier and producer of Malayalam movies. She had sung for more than 60 movies before she was called to compere the show. Being a music-based programme, she didn't think twice before accepting the offer.
It is consoling to know that most of our young anchors are serious about pursuing their studies. Nikhil is doing a Canadian correspondence course in MBA. Ranjini is planning to do her post-graduation and Amritha is doing her degree and wants to do her masters in digital designing. Tessa is not taking up any movie assignment, at least till she completes her MA. "My parents are yet to give me permission for pursuing a career in movies," she says. She is also worried about the lack of support from her relatives. "Christians are a conservative lot. Acting in movies would be the last thing they would accept. So,you cannot find many Christian actresses in the field," she adds. Though Rimi's parents are very supportive in all her endeavours, she wants to complete her studies.
Not many take anchoring as a springboard to filmdom.
Says Nikhil, "I was never interested in an acting career. My interest lies is singing and I would like to stick to it." The same goes for Ranjini too. She wants to continue playback singing. Anushree is also not interested in doing films. But Tara, anchor of `Heartbeats', Asianet, has acted in movies such as `Minnaram' and `Aaram Thampuran'. She has also done a very important role in `Anyar', which would be released soon. She aspires to be a pop singer. And Maya Kartha of the `Global Greetings' fame is not very sure of a career in movies. "Life is unpredictable. I don't know what the future has in store for me. I may or may not get into films," she says.
The cute little kids, Gautami and Gayathri, of `Vasanthageethangal', on Doordarshan, are the cynosure of all eyes. Even at a tender age, they look mature.
Going by the present trend, we can expect many more new faces in our living rooms.
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