WOMAN OF METTLE
Full-time actress and a full-time mother, one wonders how she does it all and with so much passion; yet, one conversation with Uma Riyaz Khan is all it takes to know one can have it all! She is one of the few actors who love acting and takes cinema passionately and has shared screen space with some of the leading stars of Kollywood. For her acting is a craft and she proves her mettle every single time she’s on-screen and has been constantly juggling between many mediums of entertainment. The versatile actor speaks to RITZ about her career choices, her family life, and her experiences on and off-screen as a mother and much more.
THE POWER OF GRIT
Jewellery designer, socialite, philanthropist and now the President of Terroir - The Madras Wine Club, Minnie Menon has added one more feather to her colourful hat. Minnie, who is now on mission Terroir, speaks to RITZ about her passion, love for jewellery, her recent responsibility and what it took to get in there.
THE ART OF MAKING TEA
Kausshal Dugarr - Founder and CEO of Teabox shares how he took his Indian tea brand to 117 countries.
SPREADING MASSIVE WINGS
Zorawar Kalra, founder of Massive Restaurants speaks on how he likes to innovate and stay ahead of the game.
READY TO FACE THE ARC LIGHTS!
As a child, she was always under the limelight for her amazing performances at the Kerala Youth Festival. It came as no surprise that her very first film offer came from Sibi Malayil for Ishtam opposite Dileep. Though her parents were reluctant initially, with a little coaxing from her uncle, Director K Madhu, they agreed to let her chase her dreams and ever since, there has been no looking back for this beautiful actress. Her memorable performances during the early stages of her career in films like Nandanam, Kalyanaraman and Kunjikoonan made her one of the most sought after actresses in Mollywood. With close to 50 films to her credit in Malayalam, Tamil and Kannada, she is the recipient of two Kerala state film awards. Ritz is in conversation with the South Indian Star, Navya Nair, who after a hiatus of eight years, is making a comeback to Mollywood with her much awaited film, Oruthee!
‘Raftaara’ the song from the blockbuster Mollywood film, Lucifer went viral the minute it was released online. It came as a surprise to many that it was Malayalam Cinema’s very own Jyotsna, who had sung this fast Hindi number! The gorgeous playback singer herself didn’t expect to receive such an overwhelming response and she is thrilled that the song has topped the charts. Of late, Jyotsna has been busy with her independent projects such as ‘Krishna the eternal’ - which is an offbeat meditation album, her single ‘Enni Varumo’ which won the Mazhavil manorana music award for best independent song of the year and of course ‘Paranne’, an original, written, composed and sung by the melody queen herself! Ritz catches up with the brilliant musician, Jyotsna Radhakrishnan, who recently won the ‘Kochi Marriott Presents Ritz Super 8’ felicitation for her exceptional and inspirational work in Music.
FUN, FOOD, FRENZY, FESTIVITIES, FIREWORKS & FINESSE
Thailand’s Elephant Boat Race and River Festival saw a spectacular adrenalinefilled weekend of paddlers, singers, music, food and tipple lovers, and some celeb spotting too.
FROM RAGS TO SHAYYA!
Pure Living is back with yet another incredible initiative. On women’s day this year, the firm that focusses on eco-friendly products and eco awareness, launched a special product titled ‘Shayya’, a handcrafted mattress that is being distributed free of cost to the poor and homeless. What makes it special is the fact that it is upcycled from cloth waste. Yes, the cloth scrap generated at fashion design or tailoring units that is usually burnt every single day is what is being used to make the Shayya. The result? Less pollution and a warm coz y surface for the poor and homeless! Read on to know more about this wonderful initiative by Lakshmi Menon.
DREAMS MAKETH A WOMAN
She’s a sensation in the wrestling ring. Sakshi Malik made India proud by bagging a bronze medal at the 2016 Rio Olympics. She was the first woman wrestler from the country to secure a podium finish. No highs or lows, or ups and downs stopped her from reaching her goals. Just one step short of the Summer Olympics 2020 in Tokyo, Sakshi seems to be fitter and stronger than ever before, thanks to the confidence, she’s gained from her last victory. Endorsing the partnership of Herbalife Nutrition with the Inspire Institute of Sport (IIS) as it’s sports nutrition partner, the young IIS wrestler spoke to us about her journey after Rio Olympics and her dreams for Tokyo Olympics.
Creating ENTERTAINING SOCIAL SPACES
Riyaaz Amlani, CEO & MD, Impresario Handmade Restaurants shares his journey on providing unlimited entertainment options.
South India's First Currency Museum
Bangaluru gets a new tourist spot that promises to soon establish itself into the map of Money museums around the world!
Say It With Chocolates!
Love is in the air with Valentine’s Day being just around the corner. Needless to say it is the season of roses and chocolates, and one can never go wrong with them! And when these lip-smacking chocolates come as pretty hearts with amazing flavours, rest assured that you will win your Valentine’s heart twice over! LISO Chocolatier has always raised the bar when it comes to authenticity, quality and flavours and this year, you have one more reason to celebrate the season with LISO - their Valentine’s Day special gifting options!
Make Up Trends For The Year 2020
The new year already has a few makeup looks doing the rounds. Here are a few that caught our eye…
THE WORLD UNDER HER FEET
In an industry as fiercely competitive as Bollywood, being top gun is no mean feat. However, Deepika Padukone has made the top spot her own and that too with so much ease and panache. Daughter of the famous Bangalore-based Badminton player Prakash Padukone and Ujjala Padukone, she followed in her father’s footsteps and took up the same sport. She turned her attention to modelling and movies soon, with a Kannada film Aishwarya opposite actor Upendra in 2006. She left her home in Bangalore at the age of 18 and after her hit film Om Shanti Om with Shah Rukh Khan, she shifted to Bollywood and there has been no looking back, since! There are so many facets to this lovely lady and just the few that we have come across have left us all in awe. Her boldness, composure and down-to-earth attitude, combined with a figure to die for, have brought her to where she is today. Having herself suffered from depression, Deepika formed The Live Love Laugh Foundation to help spread awareness on mental health. She has never shied away from voicing her opinions on social issues and has always believed in doing her part for the society. Here’s a candid chat with the reigning Bollywood queen.
MUSIC IS IN THE BLOOD OF THE MERCHANT BROTHERS
Salim–Sulaiman, the talented and popular Indian music composer and singer brother duo knew about their inherent love for music, even before they knew anything else in life. Salim and Sulaiman Merchant, the musical duo behind some of the biggest Hindi songs and also a few in Tamil and Telugu, spoke to us in an exclusive interview as they brought in the Bollywood vibe, with their record-breaking hits at SulaFest 2020, India’s biggest vineyard music festival.
Founder and CEO - Sula Vineyards, Rajeev Samant, has been instrumental in changing the landscape of the Indian wine scenario and has put Nashik on the global wine map. Sula was the first Indian winery to be the subject of feature in Wine Spectator, the world’s leading wine magazine and since then, Rajeev has been a favourite for global media houses of the likes of Times, Newsweek, CNN, BBC, Bloomberg and many others, as the man who has really got Indians to start drinking wine. Namita Gupta finds out how Rajeev Samant, a Stanford graduate, found his calling in the world of wines and became the pioneer of wine tourism in the country.
MADE IN INDIA, MADE FOR THE WORLD
An inventor, code developer, researcher, consulting engineer, activist, entrepreneur, and angel investor, all rolled into one, Anil Kumar dons many hats. Over the years he has meticulously crafted his skill set and has mastered the various field of his interest. From following his childhood dreams to achieving his serious passions, Anil Kumar is known for what he is today. As a founder and CEO of Jodi365, he aims to provide a preferred matchmaking platform for educated quality singles worldwide. Anil Kumar talks to RITZ in an exclusive interview as he unveils his childhood, passion, and his love for sports and fitness.
Flying Across Open Skies!
As you watch this free spirited, bubbly young actress chattering away, you feel like you have known this ‘cute girl next door’ for ages! And it wouldn’t be completely wrong to say so as this super talented star has been performing across every medium possible - be it theatre, internet, social media, Netflix, mini screen and the silver screen! Forbes India listed her among the Forbes 30 under 30 list of achievers. Her Netflix series with Dhruv Sehgal titled ‘Little Things’ is onto its 3rd Season now! What’s more? After an impressive performance in the Bollywood flick Karwaan with Irfaan Khan and Dulquer Salmaan, she is now gearing up for the much awaited web series directed by Renuka Shahane titled Tribhanga, where she is teaming up with Kajol and Tanvi Azmi in the lead. Ritz caught up with Mithila Palkar as she landed in Kochi for her play, Dekh Behen at the Cuckoo Club!
A DREAM COME TRUE!
Varane Aavashyamundu is a warm, nostalgic, feel good entertainer that revolves around the life of a mother and daughter. It beautifully portrays the value of relationships in a contemporary setting! The movie has a stellar star cast, beginning with the gorgeous Shobana and Macho Suresh Gopi to Malayalam Cinema’s favourite stars like Lalu Alex, Urvashi and KPAC Lalitha. Kalyani Priyadarshan makes her Mollywood debut opposite Dulquer Salmaan, who also turns producer for this film! And that’s not all! This family entertainer also happens to be the directorial debut of the young and very talented Anoop Sathyan, son of renowned director, Sathyan Anthikad! Ritz catches up with all the excitement as he shares his experience about the mega project that hit screens last week!
Ace cinematographer Preetha Jayaraman bares open her life behind the lens, her upcoming Mani Ratnam production, her other path breaking works and more in a candid interview with Namita Gupta.
Winning Is Just The Beginning
The winners of Miss Kerala 2019 strongly believe that hardwork and passion eventually pays off. Interestingly, all three title winners believe that it is journey that matters more than the destination. With each passing year, Miss Kerala pageant gets tougher with more number of applicants, multiple levels of screening and shortlisting protocols. Impresario Events zeroed in on twenty two participants this year who underwent a series of training and grooming sessions on how to handle various aspects of the competition! The winners revealed that contrary to popular perception, all 22 participants shared a strong bond with each other. They were there to support each other in times of need and they felt more like a gang of friends who were ready to the take on the world! RITZ is in conversation with Miss Kerala 2019 – Ansi Kabeer, First runner up – Dr. Anjana Shajan and Second runner up – Anjana Venu!
Yoga Goals For The New Year!
Life seems to be moving on the fast lane for most of us with long hours of work, little or no work-life balance, mindless hours of social media distractions and unchecked screen time! But the unlimited information flow into our minds and constant physical stress can often have a strong impact on our mind, body and soul leaving us tired, drained and often depressed. It is important to refresh ourselves, to calm the mind, reach out to our inner self and relieve stress whenever we can. One of the best ways to achieve this goal is through Yoga. Renowned Yoga coach, Sudakshna Thampi explains how we can begin practising Yoga, points to be kept in mind while practising Yoga and tips on how we can inculcate it into our daily routine. So what’s your New Year resolution going to be?
MUSIC FOR THE SOUL
Padma Shri awardee and Sangita Kalanidhi Aruna Sairam is the reigning queen of classical music and an authentic representation of the long lineage of women singers from South India. She has absorbed the finer nuances of Western and Hindustani music to beautify her performance, but ultimately it is her own aesthetic sense that makes all the difference. The leading light of Carnatic music enthralls listeners and transports them to a divine spiritual realm experiencing the joy of the blissful music as they feel the pure emotions and soulfully connect with her Abhangs. Carnatic music’s most prominent vocalist, Aruna Sairam talks to RITZ in an exclusive interview as she reminisces her journey, love for music and what it takes to be a Carnatic singer.
ON TOP OF THE GAME
From being the ‘baby’ in Arrambam to being a rocket scientist in Mission Mangal and turning a shooter for her latest Saand Ki Aankh, Taapsee Pannu has a quality about her that is very convincing. The pretty lass, who is arguably one of the busiest actors currently, also happens to have a matter-of-fact personality that makes her very convincing in person too. We felt for her in Pink, rooted for her in Mulk, had a squirmy time seeing her in Game Over and felt inspired by her in Saand Ki Aankh. We got an opportunity to chat with her recently and here's how well we got along with the brilliant Tapsee Pannu.
THE HIVE IS BUZZING!
Of late, Kochi has been witnessing a surge in performances, live entertainment, workshops and film screenings. The city seems to be evolving to accommodate new forms of entertainment and networking and two new spaces that have been the centre of all the buzz is The Hive and the Cuckoo Club. From stand up comedy, theatre, music to mentalism, they have it all covered and performers across India and abroad have come to perform here like Rahul Dua, Naveen Richards, Melbourne International Comedy Festival Roadshow India and Suhani Shah to name a few. Ritz catches up with Ria Verghese of the Cuckoo Club and The Hive in Kochi who gives us details of the inside story!
ELEMENTS OF GAUTHAM VASUDEV MENON'S LIFE
Most people know that Gautham Vasudev Menon is not just special, he is important. We met him on a rainy day. And the conversation that ensued was as good as a Gautham Vasudev Menon movie. Here’s how the ace director charmed us...
The man who is on top of everyone’s mind when you think about nightlife in Chennai is DJ Rudy who has been in the industry for over two and a half decades!
A HOME TO LAZE AROUND IN!
The minute we walk in VJ Deepak offers us juice. On that very hospitable note, we walked in to see a really loved home that the bubbly man had built with his wife and son.
CLASS APART CRAFT
THE 80s INDEED WAS A GOLDEN AGE FOR TAMIL CINEMA. THE MOVIES THAT WERE BEING MADE HAD STRONG STORYLINES
A Crusader With A Heart of Gold!
She grew up watching her dad rescue and rehabilitate lepers, beggars and stray animals from the streets. Though he was a dermatologist by profession, he worked at a leprosy hospital that promoted therapy and service; so treating and rehabilitating helpless lives was routine and very often this little girl would join her dad on his rescue missions. Post marriage as she settled in Kochi, she continued her service of rescuing injured animals, teaching at orphanages and spending time with the physically challenged. But she noticed that there were very few organisations in Kochi that supported animal welfare especially that of stray dogs. In fact, slaughtering stray dogs was on the rise and she couldn’t bear to think of such mindless killing. She garnered support from her friends and likeminded people to help as many animals as she can. But when the Kerala floods happened in 2018, things went out of hand. People were abandoning animals as they left their homes. There were far too many animals to rescue, limited funds and support. Yet, she along with her friends teamed up to rescue over 50 animals. Once the animals were settled, they conducted three adoption drives through which 300 animals were adopted. She knew that this was her calling and she quit her career and her PhD degree to follow her heart. Read on to know more about this very compassionate and courageous lady behind the NGO, Oneness, Ashwini Prem.