Plus: Bohemia signs to Sony, Gattu wins at NY festival, Asha Bhosle joining India Idol, and Bollywood play comes to Dubai.
Zohra Segal and Ramesh Sippy honoured by Indian cinema group
Zohra Segal, who turned 100 last month, and the filmmaker Ramesh Sippy will be honoured for their contributions to Indian cinema at the 13th International Indian Film Academy (IIFA) awards, to be held in Singapore from June 7 to 9. "To be recognised on an international platform is an honour," said Sippy, known for his blockbusters Sholay and Seeta Aur Geeta. Zohra will be honoured for her large body of work in theatre, film and dance. "These incredible individuals have dedicated their life to the progress of Indian cinema," said the IIFA director Sabbas Joseph. The three-day event will feature fashion shows and musical performances, culminating in an awards ceremony. * IANS
Pakistani rapper signed by Sony Music
Known as the founder of Punjabi rap, the Pakistani-American musician Bohemia has been signed by the major label Sony Music. The singer shot to fame in 2004 with his debut album Vich Pardesan De. In 2009 he was approached by the actor Akshay Kumar to compose and perform a song for the martial arts comedy Chandni Chowk to China - Bohemia's biggest hit to date. "My fans will witness a rebranded type of music. They are in for a surprise," Bohemia said. * IANS
Gattu wins big at NY film fest
Gattu, a film about a street kid's ambition to be a kite-flying champion, made a mark at the New York Indian Film Festival by winning best film and best young actor for its lead star Mohammed Samad. Directed by Rajan Khosa, the film was screened at the five-day festival that ended on Sunday. "I am so happy and it sounds like an understatement when I say that," Khosa said. "I called up Samad's parents to tell them the great news, they are so excited. These awards have been very reassuring." The film is set for a July 20 release. * IANS
Asha Bhosle joins Indian Idol judge panel
The singing legend Asha Bhosle is joining the judging panel of the sixth season of India's most popular reality talent programme, Indian Idol. "The first thing I will ever look for in any contestant is their pitch. I don't like singers who have not been classically trained," Bhosle said. "If the foundation of a building is strong, it stands tall forever. Similarly, classical training sets the base for good singing." AR Rahman is reported to have been approached to judge for the show but the music maestro declined. Indian Idol premieres tomorrow on Indian television's Sony network. * IANS
Bollywood play comes to Dubai
The Hindi musical Dhoom Macha De will be performed on Saturday at 7pm at the Sheikh Rashid Auditorium in Dubai. A comedic tale of mistaken identities, the show features the acting couple Tanaaz and Bakhtiyaar Irani, as well as the Indian television stars Ashita Dhawan and Kishwar Merchant. Tickets, priced from Dh30 to 150, can be purchased at the venue. Call +971 50 659 8207.