It was a power packed gathering of the bold, the beautiful and the successful on Saturday night, at the Marco Ricci Society Young Achievers Awards 2004 held at The Grand Hyatt. An elegant gathering of attendees from the worlds of glamour, films, fashion, literature, business, politics, art, sports and television made sure the night was unforgettable, as did the presence of Chief Guest of the evening, Shri Vilasrao Deshmukh.
Compered by the vivacious Perizaad Zorabian, the show kicked off with a brilliant performance by Pakistani duo Strings, as Bilal and Faisal had the audience clapping to their rhythm. With the adrenaline set pumping for the night, the first round of Young Achievers were announced. Sunil Paudwal walked away with the Award for Fine Art as did Milind Deora in the category of Politics. Preeti Jhangiani came on next to a hit performance to ‘Saaki’ as the audience cheered her on. Soon enough it was back to Perizaad on the stage as she announced the awards for Business, won by Amit Burman of Dabur, and the Award for Television won by the darling of everyone today, Mona Singh aka Jassi.
The Marco Ricci fashion show in the form of an Italian love story had the audience stunned. Italy is known for its impeccable fashion sense and its shoes (the country is shaped like a shoe after all) and Marco Ricci had the inimitable Ash Chandler as Mario, playing godfather to a love story set in the streets of Italy and the Isle of Capri. As the elegant shoes took centre stage, Marco Ricci also announced its foray into men’s casual and club wear. Supermodel Upen Patel and others alongside lasses like Shamita Singha, Reshma Bombaywallah, Nethra Chandler played out scenes choreographed by Achala Sachdev, ending in a grand finale set to the Godfather soundtrack. Needless to say, the innovative blending of a fashion show and a mime play got the loudest cheers. Marco Ricci commanded attention all the way.
After Tusshar Kapoor performed to his hits from ‘Gayab’, Major Rajavardhan Rathod, ace shooter, won the Award for Sports and the pretty young Nandita Basu walked with the Award for Fashion. Chetan Bhagat, who won the Award for Literature got the most laughs at his speech. The very pretty, doe-eyed Deepika Padukone, daughter of badminton champ Prakash Padukone, walked away with the award for Glamour.
John Abraham was felicitated with a special award as a young achiever in films today – he IS the hottest young thing on the block after all!
Next up was a sizzling performance by Amrita Arora and the grand finale was Bengali bombshell Bipasha Basu who turned on the fire alarm in the hall with her super-hot performance!
To no surprises Kareena Kapoor walked with the award in the category of Films to a warm round of applause. She looked every bit the star in a bright pink top and black pants as she accepted the award.
The dinner post the award function saw the who’s who of Bombay society mingle. Mehboob Haider, Director, Marco Ricci and Nari Hira of the Magna Group played elegant hosts to people like Rhea Pillai, Queenie Dhody, Smita Thakeray, Brinda Chudasama Miller, Sangeeta Bijlani and Mohammed Azharuddin, Ashutosh Gowariker, Nikhil Chaturvedi of Provogue, Madhur Bhandarkar, Komal Wazir, Ustad Amjad Ali Khan and son Amaan, Manish Malhotra and Sunita Menon, Tarun Tejpal, Nafisa Ali, Kehkashaa and Arif Patel, Farhaan Azmi, Rashmi Nigam, Ashish Balram Nagpal, Talat and Bina Aziz, Laxman Sreshtha, Bhagyashree and husband Himalaya, Parveen Dabas, Anil Chopra of Lakme and wife Sabina, Hemant Mika Rao, Poonam Soni, Arindham Chaudhary, Chayya Momaya, Suhel Seth, Shruti Seth of Channel V, producer Sameer Gupta, Lubna Adams, ‘Musafir’man Sanjay Gupta, Alyque Padamsee, Ashish Raheja, Daboo Ratnani, southern superstar Madhavan, Lucky Ali, Raman Lamba, filmamker Manish Jha, Rahul Nanda, Zeba Kohli, Omang Kapoor, Neeta Lulla, Uraaz Bahl and many more.
What can we say? It was a grand evening that saw the most beautiful and successful young achievers get recognized for their efforts. The people felicitated were those who know how to command attention – and rightly got it.