One of the popular faces of the Indian television industry, Avneet Kaur started her journey with Dance India Dance – L’il Masters at a very young age and was among the top 3. She then went on to do a few other reality shows like Dance Ke Superstars and Jhalak Dikhhla Jaa 5 in 2012. However, it was the TV show Meri Maa with which the actress made her acting debut as a child actor.
After making her mark as a dancer, Avneet went on to gain popularity as an actress and since then there has been no looking back. She is currently one of the most popular teen sensations and social media influencers. From acting in films, TV shows to appearing in music videos, Avneet has time and again proved her calibre.
In an exclusive interview, the 19-year-old actress talked about her journey from a dancer to actress, pressures of the showbiz industry, online trolling and social media responsibility.
On being asked about her journey from being a dancer to an actor, she expresses, “The journey has been amazing so far. Actually, when I started off I had not thought about it at that time especially the acting part of it. But I have always been a fan of Madhuri Dixit ma’am and I always used to see how amazing and great she is at everything she does. She is an amazing dancer and actress and she does everything. I always thought maybe in the future I want to try acting and that happened and I am really grateful for it.”.
Avneet reveals about exactly when her gut feeling prompted her into taking up acting by saying, “I think when I did Dance India Dance after that I was offered my first brand advertisement and I was not very sure because I was trying something new. But that ad became popular and people noticed and appreciated me. That’s when I thought maybe I can do it and I accepted my first daily soap Meri Maa. I started learning while I was working.”.
Avneet further goes on reminiscing her good old days of dancing post-entering the acting sphere. “Absolutely. I miss dancing because had it been not there I would have not been here in the first place. I think I owe everything to dancing. Definitely, dancing will always be my passion and I am planning to get back at it. I dance but I want to learn more in dancing and want to do more videos for my YouTube channel. I am making a few dance covers for my channel so my fans will get to see them soon.”, she confirms.
Agreeing to missing out a major part of her childhood for joining the entertainment industry as a child actor, Avneet reveals, “Yeah obviously that part of my childhood will always be missed. But till class 4th I did enjoy everything, I used to attend school, had my dance classes and then it changed for me as I did Dance Indian Dance. For the show, I had to shift to Mumbai from Jalandhar. During the school shift, I lost many things, but I want to say one thing here that I should be appreciating that I got to try something so different in my life. I was doing a dance reality show and everyone used to appreciate me for my talent. I think the motivation that I am working now and I am making myself better everyday gives me a good feeling. I would think what I am doing can make people and myself happy. I also felt that I am doing something different from others. So, I think that will always be there in my heart. But yes definitely miss those childhood days.”.
On being asked about her adjustment in Mumbai post-shifting from Jalandhar, Avneet expresses, “I remember when I was In Jalandhar I had got a lot of appreciation for Dance India Dance because from the entire Punjab region I was the only kid who got selected for the show. My principal, teachers all showed a lot of happiness and respect. I was very happy with it. But the change was pretty unsettling and uncomfortable. For a kid, it is very tough to leave friends behind and leave all your childhood memories behind and go into a place where new faces, people are going to be there. You don’t know anything. And one of the most difficult tasks for me was learning Marathi because after I came here I got shifted to the SSC board. And here till class 10th, you have to give Marathi exams. I am a Punjabi and I know how to read, speak Punjabi fluently. I had a lot of issues there. But I am glad here people were really supportive. My teachers were also very supportive so I got through it very easily.”.
On being asked that how has the reality show helped her performance’s improvement, she confidently replied, “I will always be thankful that I got to be a part of such big reality shows at that time. When I was doing these shows and putting in so much of hard work, I was not aware that these shows are going to be such a big support for me in future. I am just glad that I got to be a part of these reality shows. I think very few people do and especially at my age and I have worked really hard in DID, Jhalak Dikhhla Jaa, Dancing Superstars. I am glad I got to learn so many new forms. And now whenever I do acting, music videos there are times when I have to dance, dancing becomes a plus point for me as I know I can do it.”.
Revealing about being subjected to pressure for being exposed to the limelight, she said, “I wasn’t, lately, it has started to hit me a little. I am trying to take it as easy, as soft as I can and again it is because of my parents. Had they not been around I don’t know how I would handle it. Because there is a lot of pressure as you are on social media, you are representing something and influencing a certain set of people. The people who follow you or are going to follow you, so you have to create something different and not hurt people at the same time. I really don’t want to hurt anybody but it happens sometimes and I get sad. I really feel bad and I think that is also a phase. I am just glad that I am experiencing life’s every aspect.”.
Talking about social media etiquettes, Avneet confirms, “Right now, I am 19 and I have to take a stand and I have to see what projects I am doing. Yes, definitely I feel it is my responsibility to not do something wrong which hurts their feelings as I am influencing a certain group of people. Before I am promoting, endorsing or doing anything I take a look carefully as I know even kids are watching. I also have to be mature enough that if there is a difficult situation, I can handle it!”.
How does she balance showbiz with studies? “I almost got into a breaking point when I was doing Aladdin and I suffered dengue. When you are doing a daily soap, you work for 12 hours at a stretch. I was on a diet and I was working non-stop for my show, I had said yes to another project which was in Phuket and that I suffered from Dengue. I had my exams approaching and I was in a panic situation as I did not know what to do. I was into tears that time but my parents were there and my Grandmother had also come from Jalandhar. She was also here to support me and she is a teacher. Everyone in my family supported me during that phase and I am glad I scored a good percentage. They all got me out of this phase and I was happy that I got a good percentage because I am a studious kid and had I not scored well, I would have been disheartened. I want excellency in my work and studies both. That time I was worried about it, but I am happy everything went off well.”.
Avneet regards education to be very important. “There are families who give importance to studies like in my family. My grandmother has been a teacher, my mother has studied accounts and my father is a pharmacist. My family’s background is such that everyone has given importance to studies. For my own general knowledge, intelligence it is very important to at least complete the basic education. Later, you can decide whether you want to go deeper into it. I just completed my 12th and now I am doing a ‘BMM Bachelor of Mass Media’ as it is related to my field. Also if I feel like studying more and getting degrees, I will do it. Also, I will do my best to balance both my studies and work.”, she further adds.
Quitting the show Aladdin: Naam Toh Suna Hoga proved to be very difficult for Avneet. “In life, there are many situations when you have to take a tough call. Aladdin taught me a lot work-wise. The things I got to learn have added to my life as my plus point. I will always be thankful for that. I also got a certain fan following after doing that show. It was a very difficult decision to take. I had to take it because there were a few things and plus after dengue my health was very bad on the sets. It had become impossible for me to shoot 12 hours a day. I got scared for my health but I loved that show and it was a very emotional decision. But I had no other option because around that time corona was at its peak. I was so scared that what if I get infected by corona and because of me my family also gets it. All these things were coming into my mind. Now, I am taking care of health a lot, I am working out religiously, eating very well. I am consulting a dietician also.”.
On being asked about dealing with online trolling, she unfolds, “If we don’t talk about social media. In normal life also there are so many things that happen. There are so many things that happen during shooting, on sets. There are times when people don’t appreciate you or don’t want to be your friends. Sometimes you receive so much hate, your friends backstab you, so there are so many things that happen in your life. I think all these things are part of your life and I was always prepared for it. I always feel where there is good, there is bad also. I have been taking all this as a motivation and I just try to keep the hateful language and hate comments separate. I just try to not get affected and turn it into positiveness. This is how I deal with trolls and problems in life. Luckily, no major trolling has happened with me. Also, I am blessed with amazing fans who have been loving and supporting me with a lot of determination even through tough decisions in my life. But I see there are times when I post a picture on social media. I get a few hateful messages which are really mean. I have always seen my fans taking a stand for me and even before I can say anything they reply on those mean comments. They fight for me, defend me, support and love me. All these things make me feel special and blessed that I have a group of supporters who I call them ‘Avneetians’.”.
Avneet gleefully reveals that achieving her first ‘wings’ on Dance India Dance is still a big deal till date. “No matter how many awards I have received, DID wings was my first achievement. I was 7 years old then. For me, it was a big thing. I remember I came home and showed my parents and said look I have got this wing. I got very happy and I felt so special that I did something by myself and got it because of my hard work. The moment can never go away from my memory as it was my first appreciation and achievement.”.
On being asked about the equation with her other contemporaries, Avneet expressed, “I think we all are different and we all have our speciality. All of us have always appreciated that. We have never entered that zone where we have to compare with each other or compete. So, I think we are blessed that such thoughts have never come to our mind. It would be great if we uplift and not pull down each other. We motivate each other. The best part about us is that we have that bond, friendship between us which makes us motivate each other. I would like to tell this to everybody that you are special and don’t compare yourself to others. Appreciate your own speciality and praise others also.
“People really get shocked when I say this but I really want to be a director and be behind the camera. I don’t know where my life will take me 10 years down the line. I hope whatever I choose I am happy and it is beautiful.”, Avneet concludes on this note.
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