Mumbai Diary: Friday Dossier
The City - Sliced, Diced And Served With A Dash Of Sauce
All dressed up
Sussane Khan and sons, Hrehaan and Hridhaan, make for a colourful, vibrant frame as they arrive for a wedding reception at a Juhu five-star last evening. Pic/Satej Shinde
Dadi is all guns blazing
Come December, the city will play host to We the Women, a two-day, participatory forum that aims to bring together diverse viewpoints and celebrate women's achievements. Presented in association with the UN Women, with senior TV journalist Barkha Dutt as the forum's curator and creative director, the gathering has a generous sprinkling of names from Bollywood — a given that comes with Mumbai as the venue. But a participant who caught this diarist's eye is Chandro Tomar, aka Revolver Dadi, the 83-year-old sharp shooter from Baghpat, Uttar Pradesh, who shot to fame a few years ago by winning several championships across the country. That's some guaranteed fireworks at the discussion!
Mr Right and VANAR live at Arth, a press release announced. A glance at the artiste image was a surprise when it revealed that VANAR is the stage moniker of TV actor Karan Singh Grover. The news of Grover turning singer has been doing the rounds since the time a video of the beefy actor singing for his wife Bipasha Basu at their wedding surfaced. Grover reportedly took vocal lessons to hone his skills, and the results will be out for all to judge this Saturday at the Bandra restaurant. Grover will accompany deep house and techno artiste Deepesh Sharma (Mr Right) with vocals. As for his stage name, which translates to monkey, Grover says that it stands for the animal in him, and sometimes, he feels like he is a human inside a vanar. Basu is also known to add the hashtag #monkeylove to their couple photos on social media. “I've been singing since I was a kid. Now it's time to take this passion and make it a profession,” says Grover. Successful rock star or not, Grover will have Basu as hot groupie by his side all the time.
Chef Massimo Bottura at a book signing event in Lower Parel. Pic/Shadab Khan
Italian superstar chef whips up an audience
For the last few days, Mumbai's culinaryscape has been buzzing with just one name — Massimo Bottura. One of the world's most acclaimed and celebrated chefs, Bottura is the man behind Osteria Francescana, a three-Michelin-starred restaurant in Modena, Italy. On his maiden visit to India, brought in as part of a culinary series of a magazine, Bottura wowed his fans with a book signing (Bread Is Gold and Never Trust A Skinny Italian Chef) event and an inspiring talk session. Chef Viraf Patel, one of the attendees, posted on social media, “Haven't heard anyone speak so eloquently about their mistakes and so humbly about how he turned it into art.” Bottura also curated a menu of his signatures, including the famous oops! I dropped the lemon tart, for an exclusive dinner featuring guests including Sonam Kapoor and Mira Rajput Kapoor. What's more, the chef got to taste regional Indian fare courtesy The Bombay Canteen folks, who fed him a breakfast of 24 items, including quail eggs kejriwal, jalebi poha with filter coffee.
This teen has Antarctica dreams
Do you know who the youngest Indian to visit Antarctica is? It will soon be 13-year-old Aanya Soni, if she manages to raise the required funds to make the trip. Aanya is part of an 80-member crew that will head to the white continent next year as part of an initiative by Sir Robert Swan's 2041 Foundation, where those selected spread awareness at a community level about climate change. She needs a total of Rs 28 lakh to make the trip, of which she has managed to raise a little over Rs 5 lakh so far through her crowdfunding campaign. Aanya says, “I plan to bring back learning, a strong narrative, knowledge and real-time observations of climate change to build effective solutions to combat the effects in our communities in India. I want to promote sustainability as part of our lives.” It's great to see someone so young taking on a huge responsibility.
Who's a good girl?
A new web series, Mothers & Daughters, on a popular digital channel has been capturing the nuances of mother-daughter relationships with finesse. The latest video in the series stars Plabita Borthakur, the actor who won acclaim for her role in Lipstick Under My Burkha, with TV actor Gurdip Punjj as her mother. Titled The Good Girl, the short video delicately handles the subject of pre-marital sex and pregnancy, and the importance of parental support. Punjj plays a typical mom who has been ignored by the family, yet soldiers on and stands strong during distress. Borthakur shines in her 12 minutes of screen time, using minimal dialogues.