I am extremely excited and proud to be interviewing Sasha Singh today! I have seen Sasha grow from a talented dancer to an inspiring choreographer and now an actress in the Indian film industry! Her Telugu movie titled Appatlo Okadundevadu has released recently. Lets chat with her about her creative endeavors.
- Welcome Sasha! Please tell us what inspired you to act in movies?
I was lucky enough to have many motivators in my life. Firstly, my experiences have given me the inspiration to dream and live those dreams. I would go to the movies with my family on a weekly basis and watch all kinds of actors and actresses paint their stories on the screen. Watching Bollywood movies regularly really opened up my eyes to the world of cinema and formed my views towards acting. Furthermore, there were many influential people in my life who encouraged me to pursue my passion of acting. My family especially has been my biggest rock. They stood by me and supported me throughout the whole process. They were there for me at all times and their belief in my capabilities inspired me everyday. If they could sacrifice so much to see my dreams come true, why couldn’t I do everything in my power to achieve them?
Other people who inspired me were my Gurus and mentors. Meenakshi Sheshadri was someone who guided me when I first realized I was serious about doing movies. She offered her knowledge and time to help me. Anyone who ever taught me acting also taught me many useful life skills. My theater teacher Rene Harris pushed me to do my best in school and really sparked a flame in me. A flame of love for acting. Neeraj Kabi also trained me when I lived in India and gave me a lot of gyan for lack of a better word. In conclusion, the people and activities around me as I was growing up were my biggest inspirations.
- Its really wonderful to see that you had such amazing supportive people as your inspiration. Please tell us a little bit about your character in Appatlo Okadundevadu and how you prepared for this role?
Appatlo Okadudevadu is a complex and engaging film which is set mostly in the 90’s and is based on a true story. It has a little bit of all flavors of genres; action, romance, comedy, drama, and suspense. My character is guiding the story along and she (Riya) is searching for the main character (Railway Raju) in present time. My character links everything together and is sort of putting all the puzzle pieces together. I am a cricketer in the film so that was definitely what I had to prepare for the most. I would practice in a casual and fun way with my family and tried watching some famous cricket games/techniques. I also prepared for the role by watching and listening to Telugu films/songs in order to get used to the language that was so new for me.
- That’s wonderful. Cricket and movies are the two biggest passions for all Indians and you got to combine the two in your very first role! Besides acting, what is your favorite hobby that helps you relax?
Besides acting, my passion for dance is what keeps me going. I love to use my body as a tool to portray a story or message through song and movement. Even when I was a kid, if I ever felt upset, or had any strong emotion, I would close my room door, put on my favorite music, and just dance my heart out. It didn’t matter if I was angry, hurt, excited, etc. All that mattered was that dance gave me the ability to express my self and let out my feelings. It has always been my way of keeping myself happy and calm. I continue to dance even now. I am a choreographer for Masti Dance Academy which also allows me to explore another one of my hobbies i.e. working with kids. Each time I am in charge of or need to teach kids dance or something, I feel as though I am the one that is actually learning. I have always found that being around kids is not only a stress relive, but also it brings out my inner child. I believe that being with kids constantly gives me different perspectives on things, and it always brings a smile to my face.
- Having achieved your dream, what advice do you have for an aspiring actor?
For any aspiring actors, I would say to have your own little mantra. That is definitely what has gotten me this far and what I think will help me in the future. It may seem silly, but every day, I say a little chant to myself about what my goals are, and what I will do when I achieve them. This is a constant reminder to keep my aspirations in mind in every little thing that I do. This puts out those thoughts into the universe and before you know it those thoughts become a reality. Of course, acting is a complex and unique art form. There are so many techniques and practices out there. Finding what does or doesn’t work for you, and constantly exploring and practicing those techniques will prepare you for any role that comes your way. I try to make time in my schedule on a daily basis to learn something new about acting, the history of cinema, cinematic techniques, or something which will expand my knowledge in acting. Being proactive and checking for casting calls is another must.
- Thank you for the inspiring advice, I’m sure that aspiring actors will find it very helpful. Tell us, what was the most challenging aspect for you while performing in front of the camera?
I have had experience in theater and I always knew that acting for the camera is different, but it wasn’t until now that I realized just how different it really is. A camera will catch your every detail, a wrinkle when you smile, a tooth which is slightly crooked, or anything else you wouldn’t normally notice. Once I realized this, the most challenging part of acting in front of a camera for me was fully immersing myself into my character, so that every little detail about me, reflected what my character was feeling. Because the camera picks up every minute detail, the challenge for me was making sure every little eyebrow raise or lip twitch would work and enhance my character at that moment.
- Do you want to share some information on your other acting projects?
I have a couple of projects coming up which I can’t release information about yet. I will be posting about these and other future projects once they are finalized on my Facebook page.
Thanks Sasha for stopping by. It was a pleasure and I wish you great success in all your creative endeavors!
Sasha’s Movie Poster (Appatlo Okadundevadu)