Great Moments can Happen Anytime: In Conversation with Music Composer Sidhant Mathur

Sidhant Mathur is an Indian film music composer, who has also worked with popular independent music albums and productions (Shilpa Rao, Parikrama, Indian Ocean, Mrigya, Faridkot to name a few) as a Producer and Engineer from Quarter Note Studios, New Delhi which he co-founded in 2006. His notable work as a music composer includes feature films like Children of War (2014), Budhia Singh: Born to Run (2016), short films like Paroksh & Bete. Most recently he has been appreciated for his work in the popular Netflix series, Jamtara – Sabka Number Aayega” Seasons 1 & 2.

We recently caught up with Sidhant and had a chat on his journey so far. Here’s an excerpt from the same-

How has the journey into music composition & production been so far?

It has been nothing less than wondrous and exciting. There is so much music around to explore and learn from that, it’s overwhelming.

You’ve formally learnt audio engineering, so any specific reason behind choosing to produce & compose music rather than getting into audiography/sound designing, which is also a field that’s being looked upto now?

For me, the journey into sound started with music. Being a self taught musician, studying audio engineering opened up a whole new world of music production. Having said that, I have designed sound for some short films and theatre and it is also a lot of fun. But, composing music is where my heart is.

How did you get your first major break in the industry? Can you please share that experience?

The first full length feature film I signed was Mrityunjay Devvrat’s ‘Children of War – Nine Months to freedom’, which was released in 2014. It was based on the 1971 Bangladesh Liberation War. It was a very intense subject and I could explore a lot of emotions musically including geographical elements and references. I believe every project brings its own learnings. Going through the whole technical and creative process of creating music for a feature film for the big screen is a mammoth task and achieving it flawlessly with all of your heart is the goal.

What have been the learnings from all the experience of working with noted bands & artists like Parikrama, Indian Ocean, Shilpa Rao etc.?

My biggest learning is that great moments can happen anytime and one must be ready to capture them in the best possible way. Every artist brings their own energy and style to the music. As a music producer, working with professional artists from different genres keeps me on my toes and in good form :).

How do you manage to dabble between multiple areas like films, series, theatre, independent music etc.? What do you find the most challenging of all?

Music connects all of these areas and I am equally fond of producing independent music as I am of scoring for films. The formats and genres may be different but the essence of all music is the same. However, focussing on one project at a time helps getting into the finer details.

What is more satisfying for you, composing songs or the BGM? Why? Could you elaborate a bit?

For me they are both the same and I enjoy doing both equally. They might be different forms of expressions and require different skills and tools but it’s about the narrative and the communication. Scoring background music is in context to the film and songs can often break away from that.

You’ve been around the film business for a while now. When do you see the transition from indie films to mainstream happening? Any process that you are following?

I like going with the flow and so far I have no reason to doubt it. I believe opportunities are infinite and you get whatever you are ready for. I’m grateful for all the projects that I’ve been a part of and hope that I can continue working with the greats of our time.

Is there any particular method that you follow to prepare for a project, be it a Jamtara or a Children of War?

There is a lot of research and work that goes into creating music for a film. Months of composing, arranging, finding the right musicians and technicians, studios, management etc. My method has been evolving ever since my first project but usually it includes thoroughly understanding the theme and characters and how those characters can be represented through different instruments and binding them into a musical journey.

How has the experience of working on Jamtara been? Any interesting anecdotes to share?

Working on Jamtara has been a great experience. It was a pleasure to work with director Soumendra Padhi and the rest of the crew. We had a great time brainstorming over almost every scene. He has a great sense of music and knows exactly what he needs.

What would your advice be for those who are wanting to take up a career in music?

I say go for it. There are many mainstream avenues in music now and looking at how much content is being created and consumed, it’s a great time to be in this profession. Especially with the technology at hand, one only needs great ideas.

Please tell us about your forthcoming projects.

I have been working on an interesting war documentary feature, among some short films. I’m hopeful of a mainstream movie in the pipeline soon.

Here’s wishing Sidhant all the very best for his forthcoming projects.

In Conversation with Actress Luviena Lodh

Luviena Lodh is an Indian actress, who recently played the lead role in EORTV’s recent offering ‘You Complete Me’ alongside Raj Kumar and Punit Bhatia. Luviena is also a trained Bollywood and Jazz dancer. She has also worked in various movies in the Kannada and Telugu industry. Luviena was also a part of a short film called Girl On Heels streamed on Sonyliv and a web series called Humse Na Ho Payega on ULLU.

Continue reading “In Conversation with Actress Luviena Lodh”

I wish to be remembered as a Superstar in the future: In Conversation with Actress Srishti Shrivastava

Actress Srishti Shrivastava has been one of the more noticed faces on the big & small screen of late. Her performance in the Hindi film Maja Ma is still being talked about. In a freewheeling conversation with MAM recently Srishti spoke to us about her experience of working with Madhuri Dixit, her career so far and lots more. Here’s an excerpt from the same-

How did you land the role in Maja Ma & how was the experience of working with veterans like Madhuri Dixit & Gajraj Rao?

Continue reading “I wish to be remembered as a Superstar in the future: In Conversation with Actress Srishti Shrivastava”

In Conversation with Director Deepak Pandey: On EORTV, (the OTT platform aimed at the LGBTQ community) and more

Deepak Pandey is a renowned industry veteran and has been helming EORTV (the Premier Video on Demand, OTT media service platform with a differentiated philosophy to focus on the LGBTQ audiences and other communities) right from inception. He started his career as a cinematographer in the Indian television industry. He made his directorial debut with ‘I love US’ which was released on Footloose Youtube channel. He has also directed ‘Shaurya’ which aired on Sony LIV, The Bull of Dalal street, Halala, Paanchali, Singardaan, #metoo, Dance Bar, Tadap and many more for Ullu channel. He was awarded the best director award for the series, Halala. He plays a vital role in establishing the series and is known to experiment in his craft while exploring new technologies in the market.

We at MAM spoke to Deepak recently & given below is an excerpt from the conversation-

How does it feel to straddle multiple areas, television, OTT and cinema? How challenging is it?
It gets difficult sometimes if I’ll be very honest. To understand the psyche of the viewer is not easy. Writing stories around the LGBTQ community is more challenging. I always try to create emotional magic in my content. Currently my focus is to manage content for EORTV only and tell stories which will be loved by the audiences.

What do you enjoy more, cinematography or direction? Why?
I like this one and it’s difficult to pick. Cinematography was my first love and will always be. When I was into cinematography I was flowing through every frame of my life and told stories through my visuals. Now I tell the story through audio visual and this is my new found love. So I am having a good time and enjoying the process. Cinematography is like my strong base. It helps me in creating magic in my direction. Photography always deals with the technical aspects and direction always deals with human emotions. So it’s a perfect balance that I am trying to maintain and apply in the content I create. At the end of the day, I’m a storyteller, have always been one. I have done that through my lenses, by using best of my knowledge and creating the magical world as needed in the script. This journey through lenses further pushed me to become a director. To envisage the entire story and sharing it with my audience is what I feel made the transition. My years in cinematography helped me understand the medium better for the stories to unfold better. I cherish the great grounding that I have had.

Does your long experience as a cinematographer help you when you are directing a project? Could you elaborate on it?
Of Course yes, the journey begins when I go for the recce to finalise the location or have to communicate with the art director or deal with the dop. When I am building a set or a frame, two things come to my mind, how my cinematographer is going to create magic through the light and how is he going to create a source for it. In the meanwhile my other side of the brain thinks how my art director is going to pop up the set so I can create movement and direct my actors. These two battles always happen in my mind and because I have experience of being on sets for years now, it’s easier to support my team and make quick decisions.

How was the experience of working on Shaurya?
t was a great experience. I always wanted to tell the story about people who lived for others and died for the nation. It was an emotional journey while writing because I got into the depth of it while viewing the journey of these real heroes. This series has created a value of life towards the nation.

Tell us about the inception of EORTV, what led you & the team to come up with it, challenges faced etc.
 wanted to be a voice of reason in this second phase of my life. I have always wanted to do something to bring about some significant changes in society, and whenever I met people from the LGBTQ community,  I felt sorry for them. I always thought, why are they not studying, why can’t they become pilots ,why are they not doing larger than life things ,why are they not happy? And mainly why are they not getting accepted in society? That’s how I thought I would tell the stories and aim to create an awareness in the society.  The people in our community are one of us and are with us. We have to accept them. Talking about challenges, challenges are huge. Being a director, being a storyteller I have pitched the stories to all GECC and OTT platforms and nobody accepted them. That’s what led me to start our own independent OTT platform EORTV. EORTV is the first LGBTQ focused platform in our country.

What do you think about the present Indian OTT space & how do you visualize the same in the near future?
I feel the present Indian OTT platform has a huge market where they can gain a big audience if they tell good stories for the future. Whoever will say good and engaging stories will sustain.  The current streaming business is experiencing the golden era, due to the pandemic, people have become more informed about various streaming platforms and are happy to use it. Due to this directly or indirectly people’s views are broadening and they are accepting unusual content, even out of their comfort zone and have started liking and supporting the same. Social media is a big influence in this, as word of mouth through social media is playing a crucial part.

Could you share some of the future plans of EORTV?
EORTV will create a couple of franchises in the country. So we will meet with new talent and technicians. We want to expand our brain, get more hands and legs and minds to work together.  Through this journey we are going to motivate the youth and provide a platform to them.

I want to play roles which are challenging: In Conversation with Model and Actress Roaleey Ryan

Hailing from Delhi, model turned actor Roaleey Ryan has worked in Bollywood Films like Faactory, Blood D, Be – Careful. Most recently she’s been seen in the lead role in She is now being seen playing the lead role in EORTVs web show called I love Us 2, a lesbian drama which deals with same sex relationships. Here’s an excerpt from a conversation with her-

Continue reading “I want to play roles which are challenging: In Conversation with Model and Actress Roaleey Ryan”

I am obsessed with the idea of creation: Says Actress Shalini Pandey

Shalini Pandey who has been active in both Gujarati and Hindi cinema, has been recently receiving a lot of attention for her appearance in the music video, Sajna by Vikram Montrose. Here’s an excerpt from a recent conversation with the talented actress.

Continue reading “I am obsessed with the idea of creation: Says Actress Shalini Pandey”

The Harry Potter Series inspired me to become an actor: In Conversation with Model & Actor Medha Rana

Model turned actor Medha Rana has been noticed of late for her presence in the music video, Armaan Malik: Barsaat and the web-series London Files (streaming on Voot). We at MAM caught up with Medha for a brief conversation about her career so far, given below is an excerpt from the same-

Continue reading “The Harry Potter Series inspired me to become an actor: In Conversation with Model & Actor Medha Rana”

On Mombiyan and More: In Conversation with Actress Ankita Sahu

Actress Ankita Sahu who’s been noticed in “Tera Yaar Hoon Main” has recently completed work on an OTT original series- Mombian – Gul & Sakshi Ki Pyaaari Si Love Story. Here’s an excerpt of a conversation with her where she talks about her Mombian experience, The actress talks about her character, how she bagged the role of Sakhi, and her initial struggling days.

Continue reading “On Mombiyan and More: In Conversation with Actress Ankita Sahu”

I’m glad that I’m in the Music Business: In Conversation with Singer Raahul Jatin

We caught up recently with singer and musician Raahul Jatin, the son of veteran composer Jatin Pandit who has been making a mark for himself with tracks like “Bin Tere”, “Aankhon Ke Ishare” and others, for a quick conversation. Given below is an excerpt from the same-

Continue reading “I’m glad that I’m in the Music Business: In Conversation with Singer Raahul Jatin”