Artistically arranged clusters

Clusters of interesting people have always made for interesting portraits, and some glossy magazines have more or less perfected the art.

Something of this nature appears to have taken place recently when a group of denizens from Mumbai and Delhi wearing white, were scattered artistically to show off Delhi-based designer Rohit Bal’s outfits to best advantage. These included artist Bharti Kher, scenographer Sumant Jayakrishnan, designer Malini Ramani, film maker Mozez Singh, media maven Madhu Trehan, fashionistas Gunit Sodhi and Nandita Mahtani, writer Aatish Taseer and budding star Ajit Sodhi.

Celebrating Rohit Bal’s outfits
Celebrating Rohit Bal’s outfits

Shot to commemorate Bal’s 25 years in the fashion business, and featured in a fashion glossy’s latest issue, the shoot saw the designer choose 50 of his favourite muses and icons who he felt epitomized his oeuvre, including Sonam Kapoor, Arjun Rampal, Shabana Azmi and Renuka Chowdhury.

“It was fun! A few months before the shoot we had to go in and give our measurements,” said one of the subjects. Did they party through the shoot? “No the party happened that night and we all went back for it,” she said, adding quite superfluously “It was EPIC.” Indeed.

Elegant SoBo extravaganza
No doubt about it. When SoBo decides to organize a party it raises the bar. Guests at the Bhandari –Moolobhoy nuptials on Saturday night are still recovering from the gasp-inducing arrangements: from the NSCI’s dome being turned into the interiors of a French Chateau, replete with chandeliers, book shelves and settee configurations, to a mixology laboratory bar, to an international DJ and singer, to the acrobats who slithered down from the ceiling to present the rings to the engaged couple, it was apparently the last word in elegant extravaganza.

Rishi and Queenie Sethia
Rishi and Queenie Sethia

The likes of Madhu and Ravi Ruia, Rima and Manoj Jain, Queenie Singh and Rishi Sethia, and Athiya Shetty, were seen partaking of Blue Sea’s sumptuous banquet, on tables bedecked with fresh flowers and candelabra.

Rima and Manoj Jain
Rima and Manoj Jain

“Apparently, the engagement has been so lavish because the wedding has been planned as an intimate destination one,” said a grande dame before knocking back a couple of Alka Seltzers washed down with coconut water. The reason, “Too much bopping to Bollywood and knocking back the Moet on tap from the party.”

Athiya Shetty
Athiya Shetty

And as expected, no VIP and non-VIP segregation this time around she assured us.

Chetan gaya London
The weekend saw author Chetan Bhagat being interviewed by SOAS academician Rachel Dwyer, at the London Library as part of the in London Asian Film Festival 2016.

Rachel Dwyer with Chetan Bhagat
Rachel Dwyer with Chetan Bhagat

The author of some of India’s biggest blockbusters, like Five Point Someone (3 idiots), The 3 Mistakes of My Life (Kai Po Che!), 2 States - The Story of My marriage (Two States), shared his experience both as a successful novelist and as a screenwriter.

“We talked frankly about writing, English language fiction, and the appeal of Bhagat’s novels to a new group of readers who were learning English,” said Dwyer, “before focusing on the films adapted from his books.”

Incidentally, Half Girlfriend, adapted from Bhagat’s book of the same name, and starring Arjun Kapoor and Shraddha Kapoor, rolls in May 2016 for an April 2017 release.

Mumbai to Madrid
A little bird tells us that IIFA 2016 is going to be held in Madrid this year. The glittering awards ceremony, the only one initiated by Bollywood itself, has seen its share of star politics and controversies in the past and has been noted for its ambassadors - including Salman Khan and Amitabh Bachchan.

Sonakshi Sinha
Sonakshi Sinha

And to make the announcement public today in Spain’s city that never sleeps, is no less than Sonakshi Sinha, who flew in looking quite sparkling over the weekend. You heard it here first.

Defaulting woes
“It’s not only the Reserve Bank Governor and the worldwide financial community who are affected by the current state of India’s loan defaulters,” It was our Oolong Tea-favouring SoBo hostess, as usual holding forth on matters big and small. A pocket-sized masseur was massaging her temples as she spoke.

“There is this wealthy business clan who owe banks far more than what poor Vijay Mallya does, who have suddenly begun to act quite jittery,” she cackled. How so, we asked.

“Well after a recent family betrothal, the boy’s side just cannot understand why the patriarch of the clan wants to hold the wedding six months before plan,” said the OTFSH. “They are bewildered by the haste,” she said.

“But how can they know that following the VJM headlines, the family fears that there will be a similar situation involving themselves and an earlier big fat wedding will be less awkward for all concerned?” Hmmm we said.

“No doubt about it. The VJM factor is affecting Indian affairs in more ways than just the financial,” said the OTFSH as she tinkled her little bell to ask for some more hot water.

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