The grand finale of the Indian Idol Season 12 was held on Independence Day. While Uttarakhand’s Pawandeep Rajan won the trophy, Telugu girl and doodler Shanmukhapriya finished at No 6. She created a sensation and having impressed the judges with her doodling in the show, at one point, she came close to being the first female Indian Idol. Nonetheless, she became the first Telugu girl to make it to the finals of the pop idol format.
A lifetime experience
Having been part of the show that ran over eight months, Shanmukhapriya says she is happy with her performance. “It’s an amazing experience; reaching that stage requires a lot of hard work and dedication. I gave my best shot and I thoroughly enjoyed my stint,” she replies.
Having earlier been a part of 11 reality shows, Shanmukhapriya had dreamt of being a part of the Indian Idol show since her childhood. Of course, the youngster is glad that her dream finally came true also because her parents wanted to see her performing in the show, too.
Even so, when Shanmukhapriya had started off initially, she’d only wanted to see how far she could take this. But as she began getting a great response and as the show kept on progressing, her confidence grew, and she actually started enjoying it. In fact, having won the Golden Mike during the auditions, the 20-year-old began emerging as one of the strongest contenders for the trophy. “I felt like giving my best in every round and making the most of the opportunity,” says the Vizag girl.
Challenging her creativity
Of course, the pressure of maintaining her levels of performance was a lot, and meeting those expectations was difficult. “I just wanted to be consistent and focus on my performance, and more importantly, enjoy being part of the show,” adds the singing sensation.
Then again, wanting to be consistent and actually being consistent are two different things. Shanmukhapriya admits that performing well in every episode of the show was indeed very challenging. Among the best of her performances through the show was when she rendered Kishore Kumar songs and Asha Bhosle songs — undoubtedly the show-stealers. But every time she sang well, she was under pressure to perform just as well or even better for the next episode.
The learning curve
Always thankful for the helpful tips given by the judges in the show, the young singer believes that the experience of the show made her grow musically and better the nuances of her music.
“I cherish the experience of singing before such ace singers; the feedback from judges and music mentors were insightful and made me grow better musically. Also, I learned a lot from the judges. What’s more, listening to their stories was very inspiring,” she says.
That overwhelming feeling
Amidst all the excitement of being on her dream reality show and then doing as well on it,was the fact that Shanmukhapriya was the first Telugu girl to make it to the finals of the Indian Idol show. While she couldn’t be prouder, she’s grateful for the love and support she got from the audiences and people from the Telugu community.
Shanmukhapriya also ascribes her success to her parents who are musicians and her school and college management for their constant support. Saying all of it means a lot to her, Shanmukhapriya reveals that the night before the grand finale, she experienced many emotions.
“I knew the grand finale was when I’d perform last, so I wasn’t worried about the result. I was content with my journey throughout the show and glad I was consistent till the end,” she elucidates. In fact, her consistency even got the young lady several offers much before the final was over. She’s signed two Hindi projects. Additionally, Vijay Deverakonda has promised her that he’d make her sing.
A rakhi brother on the show
One of the biggest moments and the highlight of the grand finale was when host and singer Aditya Narayan, who’s also the son of renowned singer Udit Narayan, asked Shanmukhapriya if she could be his younger sister.
An emotional Shanmukhapriya obliged with a warm hug. “Like Aditya, I too don’t have siblings and we are our parents’ lone children. But when he asked to be his sister, I was so emotional and I was short of words; it was a memorable moment,” she says who even went on to tie rakhi to Aditya.
“That was the first time I tied rakhi in my life; it was a very dear moment.” Incidentally, Udit Narayan and his wife also sat in Shanmukhapriya’s parents’ gallery to watch her performance in the finale. Udit even went on to say on air, “Shanmukha is my rock star baby daughter.”...