Frankly I have no idea where to start. Aditi Chengappa, the multi talented diva that I had the opportunity to interview, has done it all. She’s an actress with a brilliant resume going for her, an accomplished singer ( trained in both Hindustani classical and western vocals literally ) and she’s basically done everything that makes her the coolest personality that I ever got talking to. Here’s how it went..
Straight off the chest, one look at your Wikipedia page ( yeah I had to look at it to be very careful ) and we see you are the best of three worlds isn’t it? Kannadiga, Tamilian and raised in Delhi. Which facets of your personality then do you attribute to each of these wonderful cultural ethnicities ?
Funnily enough I also spent the first two years of my life in Boston, right after I was born in Bangalore, I feel like the diversity I experienced from a very early age has greatly affected the way I think, I have always enjoyed interacting people from different cultures, I can’t pin- point attributes to each city, but I hope I’ve got the best of all three!
In a rare occurrence, almost everyone I’ve met knows you, though not exactly placing you correctly. Where do you think such fame occurred from? Was it Thakita Thakita or was it something beyond movies?
I’m surprised to hear that too! Technically my debut was the Yoga capsule on Ndtv Goodtimes, although after that I was also blogging and writing for an online newspaper called Digital Journal. I’m sure Thakita Thakita brought more attention, however since it is a regional film, I do not think it can account for anyone other than a Telugu audience. The other possibility is just simply my surname, I’ve always maintained that my father is the real celebrity hehe, he’s been writing for over thirty years so his name is definitely popular!
You are an accomplished pianist ( frankly can’t get more cool than that), trained in Classical music and you’ve been a host for NDTV Good Times, and well an actress of much promise. Out of These many facets, is there something closer to your heart? And now with TwoBirds platform, where do you see yourself going eventually?
That’s an interesting question, to answer it quite simply, everything that I’ve ever chosen to do, I’ve done with my heart. I have always had multiple interests and never felt like i needed to choose only one, my parents are to thank for this freedom. Music is definitely the closest to my heart, I intend on pursuing it professionally in the future. Two Birds is a project that had been a dream for my Mom and I, something we’ve been wanting to do for a long time, i’m truly hoping that everyone enjoys our creations.
Now you’ve acted in Telugu and Tamil as well, and you can speak in from my count 4 or 5 languages . Is it therefore difficult or easy to define yourself, as you have had many more options than the usual in the terms of expressing yourself ?
I have always had a love for languages but i believe it is only through actions that you can truly express who you are, i think everything that i have ever taken up, has been my way of expressing myself.
Now we know your story much only from Wikipedia, but we’d love to hear more from you. What is Aditi beyond everything. Where does the story start before Sriram college ( I mean that’s a 95 percent admission , so that qualifies you as a genius, and I feel so puny)
Aditi is quite frankly a tree-hugging, jazz- loving flower child who should have been born at-least three decades earlier! Except that then i would miss my video games! I adore everything in nature and i mean from lizards to cuddly animals to birds. When i’m not practicing music, I spend my free time posting on my group called Furry Feathered friends on Facebook, i think the name says it all! I also enjoy sharing my thoughts on my official Facebook page, in fact i don’t really post about films there at all!
Now that it’s established that you are awesome, let’s do something fun. What is that one movie that you repeat watch every time you are low. What is that one book that has had an everlasting impact on your nature. What are the genres that you are a bit inclined towards ? And what is that role in Indian cinema that you wished you’d done?
Ooh fun! That would have to be a tie between bugs bunny cartoons and Notting Hill! Every single Enid Blyton book I’ve ever read has instilled a belief of magic in me forever! My favorite genre has to be science fiction, i have always been a bit of a geek, Star Trek is my favorite series, and The Matrix is my favorite Sci- fi film, i also enjoy a good romantic-comedy, and love me some action-thrillers! I suppose i like all genres really, except for horror, definitely not an adrenaline junkie! I would have loved to play Mastani from recent films, or any role Deepti Naval played, i’m a huge fan!
When you want to go for a film role , what are the first five things that you want to decide upon? Also are you involved in any other aspects of film making, as many other actors do?
The most important thing to me would have to be the story and the message of the film. I haven’t officially taken part in other aspects of a film but i love photography, it’s been a hobby for a long time and it definitely helps in understanding light.
You’ve been a host for a show on NDTV Good Times, now how did that happen. And how contrasting is it when compared to acting or the musical inclination of yours. In that regard, what is that one skill that you wished you had? One superpower that you dig for?
The show on Ndtv happened because they needed someone who had a natural approach towards yoga and could be the voice of the viewer, I’m featured on it with my mom who is a yoga expert, I had to audition for it too! Acting in films was a completely different experience, however the Tv show had made me comfortable with the camera so that really helped. I think all the skills acquired through time help in everything you do. The one superpower I wish I had would definitely be to Teleport.
You come from a classical background in music with a choosing of Western vocals? Now pardon me but, are we wrong to believe that you might eventually come up with a music album or sing for feature films? Also what are any five things that we as an unassuming public don’t know about Aditi ?
I most certainly want to pursue music in the future, I have studied both Hindustani and western classical and I’m open to pursuing both, piano is my main instrument but I also play the guitar and I’m trying to master it. Five things, hmm, 1. I LOVE pizza, contrary to what people think, I am slim because of many years of yoga that allow me to eat pretty much anything, I never diet. 2. I’m crazy about miniature crafts, and indulge in such crafting myself. 3. I still watch F.R.I.E.N.D.S reruns and find all the jokes funny. 4. Contrary to my profession, I’m not a fan of make-up and stick to the bare minimum. 5. My all time favorite video game is Mortal Kombat.
Now to wrap up the things, Any advice you would like to give to the budding actors/artists that want to make it big in the artistic field? Also for someone just starting in expressing themselves, what would they really need to promote themselves. And where does social network comes in?
I don’t feel I’m in a position to advise anyone, all I can say is that I you have to pursue what makes you happy, when you’re happy, you put your heart into it, and that has to succeed! Even if you don’t make it big instantly, you will have no regrets if you give it your best. I think as artists everyone would agree that you have to get used to not always winning! As far as social networks are concerned, I do think they are a wonderful way to connect with people and express yourself, I have barely used it for promotion so I wouldn’t be able to advise on that!
Thank You So Much Aditi For Your Time. It was incredibly fun talking to you.
Keep following Her works On Her Creative Enterprise Two Birds Here.