Heek featured Shreya Sharma, who plays Biniya in Vishal Bhardwaj’s new movie The Blue Umbrella, in its first issue in April 2006. Some excerpts from that feature:
“I’m very possessive about my belongings,” says 13-year-old Shreya Sharma. That’s just like Biniya, the girl she plays in the The Blue Umbrella, based on Ruskin Bond’s popular book. She also hastens to add that this is about the only similarity she shares with her fictional character.
So what are Shreya’s likes and dislikes? Dancing is a favourite activity though it takes second place to painting. The budding actor likes painting scenery, landscapes and buildings. That’s where the possessiveness comes in. While in Biniya’s case it was a blue umbrella, Shreya will never part with anything in the world for her paintbrush. She likes reading R L Stevenson and Ruskin Bond.
A student of Shimla’s Sacred Heart Cathedral, Shreya wants to become a computer engineer when she grows up. Not at all short on confidence, she’d continue acting as the chances come along. Some of the acting, she says, comes naturally to her. The rest she had to adapt. Acting in skits helped her audition for the part when director Vishal Bharadwaj came hunting for Binya to Shimla.
She missed school – Chemistry and EVS are her favourite subjects – but enjoyed the 26-day shoot in Khajjiar near Dalhousie, sometimes in bitter cold, immensely.
“My schoolmates are proud that I acted in a film,” she reveals. Living in Phagli has given Shreya the chance to be with nature. She treks regularly, though for short distances. “In a city,” she says “one can’t see much in the way of scenery.” She likes travelling by train, a particular favourite route being the Shimla-Kalka stretch.
And she has a fan already. Her 7-year-old brother too is happy to have a ‘celebrity’ at home, but he doesn’t show it. And she can expect a lot more fans now.
Shreya’s advice for aspiring actors… “Do not overact. Imagine that you are the character you are portraying.” It helps, she explains, if you stand in front of the mirror and emote. Her training in drama helped her in modulating her voice and “crying”.
Favourite colors… ORANGE and YELLOW
Favourite food… NUTRI NUGGETS AND MUSHROOMS
Favourite city… GOA (VERY PEACEFUL)
Favourite actors… SHAH RUKH KHAN, RANI MUKHERJEE and KAJOL.
Hey, Shreya also sings quite well.
To read interview as PDF, as in Heek, CLICK HERE .
To read the review of The Blue Umbrella, CLICK HERE .