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Chicago’s own Idol

April 03
22:06 2013
 Anoop Walia, Sharan Walia, Pratibaha Jairath and Raju Bankapur

Anoop Walia, Sharan Walia, Pratibaha Jairath and Raju Bankapur

IEM announces May launch

CHICAGO: A highly popular TV show, American Idol, had its replica in different forms in India and elsewhere but not so for Indian Americans in Chicagoland.

Things are about to change as a foursome group of music industry insiders have teamed up and announced hosting for the first time Chicago Idol offering a platform to many a latent talent in the Indian community here to come out and share their talent with others.

Explaining the salient features of the concept to Indian media here last week, Sharan Walia, head of the newly set up company Indian Event Management (IEM) said that there had been a crying need of a reality show like Indian Idol and SaReGaMaPa where local professionals and amateur singers could take part to compete in singing competition to explore their interest in singing world. ”

Understanding this need and people’s interest, he said, his company IEM decided to take up the cudgels and do something in the matter. “After a lot of deliberation, we have chalked out a plan of action that involves hosting the 1st Indian singing reality show Chicago Indian Idol (CII) in Chicago and its suburban areas,” he said

The IEM team also thinks that the launch of this program will also bring like minded people together to build a strong network of Indian community to help each other and to provide opportunity to all people of Indian origin to explore the world of Indian entertainment in America.

Walia added that the IEM is a startup event management company but with a team of qualified and experienced professionals of diversified talents and is committed to conduct Indian Idol and similar reality shows every year in densely Indian populated cities of America.
Pratibha Jairath, a member of the IEM executive team, explained the format: There would be three auditions, two semi finals and one final.

he fee is surprisingly very nominal at $10 only per entry. “This is with a view to attract a large participation and is not a reflection on the quality of the program,” she said.

Anoop Walia, also a member of the team, had earlier welcomed the media representatives and thanked their active supporters, Meena Purohit and Kishore Purohit, both India TV anchors. He said the first launch will be on May 19 and it is expected that “we would have semi finals in August and the final in September this year.”

Sharan Walia said that the IEM expects a participation of 200 to 250 contestants. “It could go up but it would not come down based on the pre-launch inquiries that we have,” he said with confidence. Raju Bankapur, a singer in his own right, said the competition is not restricted to amateurs but is open to all. He said that IEM team would strive to get a celebrity from Indian Bollywood for the final setting. “Surely, we will try to see that the finalists get a chance to sing with Bollywood celebrities,” he added.

He pointed out there would be audience participation in selecting winners at semi-final and final stages. Besides, the judges would be quite independent and will be selected on merit.

Sharan Walia added that though the competition is initially for Chicago and surrounding area, IEM would have the similar competitions organized in other States and cities in not too distant future.

Ramesh Soparawala
India Post News Service

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