Girls give boys a tough fight in mimicry competition
As Athmana Manoj, the youngest contestant in the high school mimicry competition, gave her male counterparts a run for their money at Vivekodayam Higher Secondary School here, it was symptomatic of changing times.
Athmana won not just hearts but comfortably bagged the ‘A’ grade. Binsha Ashraf, Sreelekha Johney, Ardhra Sajan, and Deekshita Koliyot were also among the increasing lot of girls invading an art form widely perceived to be a forte of boys.
It was as if the young girls had taken cue from the bold and beautiful women in entertainment industries across the world boldly claiming their rightful place and speaking out against the injustices meted out to them in a highly patriarchal world order. They exuded confidence and slipped into various roles with élan proving that they can no longer be counted as just ‘also rans’ in the art of mimicking.
Sreelekha Johney, a self-taught artiste, is already a popular face in the comedy programmes on entertainment channels. “I keenly watch noted figures, listen to their voices, and train myself to recreate it on stage,” said the Class 10 student of St. Augustine's GHSS, Ernakulam, who is also into Ottanthullal and dance.
Athmana, a student of Class 8 at Nochad HSS, Nochad, is determined not to sit on her laurels but continue to practice hard to improve her voice and modulation skills. “Next time, I will try the voices of prominent personalities,” she said.
Binsha M. of DHOHSS, Pookkarathara in Malappuram, attributed her ‘A’ grade-winning performance to her father Kalabhavan Ashraf who is also her guru. “After my final exams, I will pursue it seriously,” said the Class 10 student.
Deekshita Koliyot, Class 10 student of St. Joseph’s GHSS, Kozhikode, just love mimicking and unsurprisingly her metamorphosis as ‘Malar Miss’ from the Malayalam blockbuster Premam was one of the crowd favourites.
For Ardhra Sajan, Class 10 student of St. John's Model HSS, this was her maiden contest at the State-level though she has presented shows on television channels. “My aim is to learn mimicry along with my studies,” she said.
Notwithstanding the strong presence of girls, the judges felt that the quality of the performances leaves much to be desired as many were trapped in the cliché of mimicking usual sounds and personalities. They are talented, but need grooming by experts, they said.