Singing reality shows, like Sa Re Ga Ma Pa and Indian Idol, were a huge craze in the 90ss. People dedicate rooted for the contestants, and often voted for them by actually spending money. But, once people realised that after their 15 minutes of fame, the winners would just disappear without a trace, many lost interest in the shows.
Defying all odds, some of these reality show contestants actually made it big in Bollywood. Here are just a few of them.
Singh was a runner-up on Fame Gurukul. After losing at the finals, he went onto participate in another reality show10 Ke 10 Le Gaye Dil. He worked as an assistant music programmer to Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy, Vishal-Shekhar, and Mithoon before debuting in playback singing with Phir Mohabbat for Murder 2.
Back when Sa Re Ga Ma Pa used to be Sa Re Ga Ma, a then 16-year-old Shreya Ghoshal participated on the show. She even recorded a bunch of Bengali music videos before her big break in Bollywood came along. Sanjay Leela Bhansali noticed her on Sa Re Ga Ma and signed her on for Devdas.
At the age of 12, Chauhan performed at the 40th Filmfare Awards with a group called Little Wonders. Music director Aadesh Shrivastava heard her there, and wanted her to sing for the film Shastra. In the same year, she participated in DD National’s Meri Awaz Suno, where she was awarded with the Lata Mangeshkar Trophy. This show made her a household name before she made a career in Bollywood.
Born to singer Shakti Thakur, Monali had already won the Anandalok Awards for her playback singing skills at the age of 14. She gained national fame after participating in Indian Idol. Anu Malik gave her a break in Bollywood with Jaan-E-Mann.
He was a contestant on Sa Re Ga Ma Pa Singing Superstar in 2010, and later he also participated in Music Ka Maha Muqabla. He made his Bollywood debut with No Problem. He has also sung for films like Gunday, Bajirao Mastani, and Begum Jaan.
Manchanda came to prominence after winning Channel V’s Popstars. Manchanda became part of the very first Indian pop girl band, Viva. Apart form Hindi films, she also sings for Telugu films, and acts occasionally too.
Aziz has hits like Gandi Baat, Dhating Naach, and Cutiepie under his belt, and assisted A.R. Rahman for several big hits like Highway, Rockstar, Delhi 6.What many won’t remember is that he participated in Indian Idol season 2, in 2005.
Another Indian Idol 2 alumni, Antara Mitra made it in Bollywood after the show wrapped up. She has recorded songs for films like R… Rajkumar, Dilwale, Dil Toh Baccha Hai Ji among many others.