The Specialist

Choose your work wisely — fashion guru Prasad Bidapa offers a word of advice to aspiring models 

Written by Jaskiran Kapoor | Chandigarh | Published: July 2, 2013 4:17 am

Take your positions,people. Enter,walk,stop,shoulders back,turn,strut,make it work,stop,look back,walk,walk,”  fashion consultant and choreographer Prasad Bidapa held on to his mic and instructed the models in a firm voice,which is loud and clear enough over the din of blasting music. The renowned style and image guru from Bangalore swung into action for designer Rupam Singh Grewal’s fashion show held in the city recently.

Although he looked a bit disappointed with the model turnout,he shrugged it off and went about his job of extracting the best out of them. “It’s a challenge every time but a pleasure,and a fun job too,” he said. His assistant,Mr India 2012 — Arry Dabas — did the needful,arranging models in line and coordinating the act.

In his career spanning 30 years,this was Bidapa’s second visit to Chandigarh. He was here earlier for the Indian Premier League post-match Van Heusen shows. “Modelling is a beautiful profession,and yes,youngsters join it for quick money. But those who do it as a shortcut to success realise there is a lot of hardwork and discipline involved,” said Bidapa,advising aspirants to work only with reputed agencies and names in the fashion industry. “Because one can easily get duped by fly-by-night operators who promise the moon,and girls have had raw deals. So one has to be careful and smart,” he added.

As the tracks for the show belted out,the choreographer piped in to say: “Music is paramount. It amplifies the show and catwalk is all about rhythm,about understanding and walking to the beat of the song.” There are always more girls than boys on the ramp,we observed,and he agreed. “High fashion in India is for women. They form 90 per cent of market,and hence,fashion shows have more female models. On the contrary,men grab the marketshare in case of ready-to-wear fashion,but there aren’t many fashion shows around it,” said Bidapa. He also made an interesting note about Indian models. “India is the only country,perhaps,to have supermodels in the age group of 30-40 years. Models such as Carol Gracias,Anchal Kumar and Laxmi Rana have been working for 20 years now,and still look ravishing on the ramp. I am so proud of this and the fact that we are not an age-sensitive society. The models here have a far longer shelf life unlike in the West where you turn 25 and end,” he said.

For someone who specialises in image consultancy,model grooming,styling and choreographing shows,Bidapa still gets the jitters about wardrobe malfunction on the ramp. “We make sure lights are quickly switched off and tell the models to exit immediately,” he said. Next,Bidapa is headed for Hyderabad to conduct a fashion show for Gujarat Tourism.

“The focus is on the textiles,colours,textures and traditional works of Gujarat such as silk weaves,tie and dye,patola and ikat,” said Bidapa.

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