Khasi girl debut with Big B

Andrea Tariang moves from music to movies with Pink

By Andrew W. Lyngdoh
  • Published 14.03.16
Andrea Tariang (third from left) with Amitabh Bachchan and co-stars Kirti Kulhari and Taapsee Pannu on the sets of Pink. Telegraph picture

Shillong, March 13: Shillong girl Andrea Tariang will make a dream debut in Bollywood, acting with superstar Amitabh Bachchan in the upcoming Shoojit Sircar film Pink.

Andrea, a musician, is currently on the sets in New Delhi with Bachchan and others for the social thriller.

Playing a central role in the film, which is slotted for release on September 16, Andrea is the first among the Khasi community to have landed a high-profile film.

A Rising Sun Films production, Pink is directed by Aniruddha Roy Chowdhury and produced by Rashmi Sharma and Ronnie Lahiri.

Speaking to The Telegraph, an elated Andrea couldn't believe that her first shot for the movie was with Bachchan himself! Although she was alongside the superstar, the first shot was done only in a single take.

"I did feel intimidated (shooting alongside Bachchan) although we met him a day before the shoot. I must say that he is a very down-to-earth person despite his tremendous fame," she said.

Recalling her journey to the sets of the film, she said, "My dad called me and enquired whether I was interested in doing an audition for a film. Well, I did take part in the audition although I couldn't speak much Hindi, and I forgot about it." ?

That was in November-December last year. A few days later, she got a call with a positive note, saying she should be in Mumbai for a workshop in relation to the film.

With no background in acting, as the 24-year-old has always been fond of music since her childhood, Andrea's debut is indeed a dream.

Daughter of famous Shillong-based musician Rudy Wallang, Andrea, who, like her father, also plays the guitar, has been performing in Mumbai. She also has a band - Lavender Groove - and has been working with top pianist Karan Joseph as well.

In the film, Andrea said she is speaking a mixture of Hindi and English, with more of English.

"My co-stars are helping me a lot. It is awesome. The casting director and others in the team are giving me a lot of confidence. Earlier, I used to be very camera shy, but now I have forgotten about the camera," she said.

To a query, she said, "Music is still my number one, but I don't mind acting as well."?

Lahiri, who has produced films including Piku, Madras Cafe, Vicky Donor, was all praise for Andrea for her natural flair in acting.

Having spent many years in Shillong as a student of St Edmund's School and College, Lahiri said he was looking for a new face from the Northeast to be part of the film.

"During the screen test, we found that she (Andrea) fitted the character perfectly. It looks like she is meant for the role that she's doing. She is a natural; she doesn't have to act," he said.

Apart from Bachchan and Andrea, Pink also stars Taapsee Pannu and Kirti Kulhari.

"It is indeed a very proud moment. Andrea is the first Khasi girl to be cast in a Bollywood movie. I think this will show to the world that Bollywood is open for the people of the Northeast, and that there is space for everyone. It will also give hope to others," Lahiri said.