Television

Chhota VJ wannabes ready, steady and raring to go

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 MUMBAI: Young at heart, innocent, curious. These are just a few of the qualities found in the kids that Nickelodeon has shorlisted as finalists for its Chota VJ Hunt. The channel shortlisted 14 finalists after six weeks and sifting through a staggering 4,300 entries.

Listening to them speak about themselves certainly whets the appetite about seeing them on the tube. Take seven-year-old Aman Singh. The young 'un certainly has an insatiable curiosity about the world around him. "I have been called Mr Question Book since age four as I constantly ask what, why questions." Query him about programming choices and pat comes the reply," My favourite show is Khulja Sim Sim on Star Plus. I do not watch Cartoon Network or Nickelodeon. My sister tunes in to them." The icing on the cake is this: "I came to know about the Chota VJ Hunt by accident while visiting my friend's home. He and his group were planning to register. I then had to force my mother into giving me permission. I was unprepared and so I just told a joke and sang a song. Next thing I know I got chosen."

Like Singh, 12-and-a-half-year-old Kavita Arjungi did not hear about the hunt from the tube. She says: " I had tried for the Children's Day Special but was rejected. My sister was chosen. Then my mother's friend said that this was another opportunity I could try for. I have been learning dancing from Shiamak Davar's for the past two years. I like to choreograph not just Hindi film songs but also songs that are fast and hummable."

Asked about whether kids' programming could be improved, she said: "There is too much dubbed Hindi programming on Cartoon Network. They should be more English in flavour so that I can follow the goings on more easily. I do not get too much time to sit in front of the telly but when I do I enjoy watching Rugrats on Nickelodeon as I find babies cute and adorable. If I was chosen it would mean the world to me as I was extremely disappointed last time around."

Another finalist Miel Yusuf liked Nickelodeon as it was nice and friendly. She draws cartoons for fun and her favourite character is Ginger. The girl has been playing tennis since age five. She says that she would enjoy the channel more if there was a programme schedule easily available.

Currently, the VJs can be seen in a two minute promo on the channel giving a quick introduction of themselves. The winner will be declared later this month.

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