Vidur Acting Institute Spreads Across Two Generations


MUMBAI – MAHARASHTRA – INDIA           APRIL 17, 2016           08.00 P.M.

In this ephemeral world of films , it is very difficult to survive for 25 years. Banners are stablished and one day they disappear. Film-makers start their journey and one day they cease to exist. Acting Training is also same. Since it is mostly ruled by unscrupulous, scheming liars, it withers before bloom. Since deceit is the pattern for majority of so-called famous acting trainers of Mumbai or India, it implode before becoming a long-living entity.

In this world of treacherous, unscrupulous and fraudulent scamsters, roaming around as best acting trainers of Mumbai, I always wonder how I survived for 26 long years. From 1990 to 2016, it seems an impossible journey. People become obsolete in 26 years. They become redundant after becoming old. They become cynics with advancing age. Finally, they slip into irrelevance. But this didn’t happen to me. It is God’s mercy. It is because of the fact that even after 26 years my students have faith on me. And this faith has made me AN ACTING TRAINER OF TWO GENERATIONS.

In the 26th year of my career, I have started my 100th batch on April 07, 2016. And this batch have a girl named SHINOVA SONI. Years ago, precisely 19 years ago, I trained her mother APARNA SONI also. Here is the complete story.

APARNA SONI [ the mother, got trained in 1997 ] SHINOVA SONI [ the daughter, getting trained in 2016 ]

APARNA SONI [ the mother, got trained in 1997 ] SHINOVA SONI [ the daughter, getting trained in 2016 ]


1997           SHEETAL APARTMENT – JUHU           BOMBAY



It was a normal, forgettable, hot and humid Summer day in Bombay. The year was 1997. The place was ground floor hall of SHEETAL APARTMENT near CHANDAN CINEMA, JUHU. An acting batch started. It had KAREENA KAPOOR, UDAY CHOPRA & SUDHANSHU PANDEY. Apart from above mentioned names, the batch also had a dusky, kohl-eyed beauty. Her name was APARNA SONI.

That is the beginning of the story. No Acting Trainer can forget students like KAREENA KAPOOR, UDAY CHOPRA & SUDHANSHU PANDEY. But one can easily forget APARNA SONI.

After mandatory 3 months period, the batch ended. Months came and gone. Seasons changed colours. Years passed. Age took me with all its ferocity and the vagaries of time engulfed me completely. I did remember KAREENA KAPOOR, UDAY CHOPRA & SUDHANSHU PANDEY. But APARNA SONI doggedly refused to be obfuscated from my memory. She refused to be just another student, who came for 3 months and simply faded away. And the efforts for maintaining this relationship were always from her side.

One phone call a month ………………. few occasional messages here & there ……………………. season’s greetings ………………… festival wishes, she was always there. She always calls. She is always there if occasion arises. She always recommends students for my acting training institute. Once when I was hospitalised, she used to come daily. Till the time I was in hospital, she came every day without fail.



2016           BUNGALOW NO. 52 – MHADA           MUMBAI


With SHINOVA SONI in My Office

With SHINOVA SONI in My Office

On March 22, 2016, I got a call from her. I thought that it is one of her regular calls. Next day on March 23, 2016, she came to meet me with her daughter. She wanted to admit her daughter in VIDUR Acting Institute .

It was again a normal, forgettable, hot and humid Summer day. Only change is that now the city is not Bombay. And the year is not 1997. City is now rechristened Mumbai and the year is 2016. And yes the student is also not APARNA. The student is SHINOVA, who just like her mother, is also a dusky, kohl-eyed beauty

It never occurred to me that 19 year have passed since APARNA completed her training. In 1997, I never ever expected that after training APARNA SONI, one day I would be training her daughter also. I never imagined this even in my wildest dreams. But 19 year after training mother APARNA SONI, I am training her daughter SHINOVA SONI too.

It is not easy to become AN ACTING TRAINER OF TWO GENERATIONS. It is very rare chance. Apart from Shri Roshan Taneja, no other acting trainer of India can claim that they have trained two generations. Taneja Sir trained SHRI SHATRUGHAN SINHA & his son LUV SINHA.


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