in Canada Sheena Lakhani moved to The United Stated at the age of five where
she started training in various dance forms like ballet and jazz. Soon she was
competing in local and state level dance competitions. Participating in fashion
shows and acting in plays form an early age Sheena even went on to play the
lead in a Romanian language play while living in Romania. Sheena has also acted
in a few Hindi language films that are yet to release. We recently had the
opportunity to interview the enormously talented actress, dancer and model
IM: Can you tell us what inspired you to get in
to acting and when you knew that you want to the take up
acting professionally? Sheena: I have been trained in the
arts and sports since the moment I was born. My mum always had every five minutes
of my life planned out, which back then I took for granted but now I owe all
the credit to her and my fashionista father. I trained as a dancer from age
five in ballet, tap, jazz and gymnastics for eight years straight. Also, I
played basketball, baseball, the piano, the recorder, sang in a chorus and
trained in karate. In America I have done plays in English and Spanish, modeled
in fashion shows and competed in every dance competition in and out of University.
Before moving to Mumbai from Romania I was doing plays in Romanian Language. It
was while I was meditating in January 2011 that I had a vision that I was in
India in front of bright camera lights performing. The vision came to me
several times and my Guru said "we must return to God as His children". It was this and also my Guru saying that
we can find our way back to God by doing the things we enjoyed as a child
before our minds became conditioned by society. When my Guru saw me perform
live for the first time, he came and said to me, "Sheena the way you
perform, it is like you have been reborn." It was my Guru's words and
guidance that brought me to Mumbai and Bollywood.
IM: And tell a bit about your training? Sheena: I have trained in ballet,
tap, jazz, gymnastics, basketball and baseball for 8 years. I competed in
local, state level and university dance competitions in various dance forms,
acted in plays and participated in fashion shows for 15 years in South and North
Carolina. Learned modern contemporary dance during studies at university of North
Carolina where I studied three majors’ finance, accounting and international business
and minored in Spanish. Also, I have learned salsa, merengue, bachata, cumbia,
reggaeton, hip hop, traditional Gujarati/Indian and European Latin ballroom
dancing since university. I have learned to speak and/or sing and pray in
various languages including Spanish, Romanian, German, Arabic, Hindi, Gujarati,
Punjabi, Latin, Hebrew, Farsi and Swahili. I also hold diplomas in Tai Chi and
Chi Kung. I am in a mystical yoga school.
IM: You have acted both in front of the camera
and on stage, which would you say is more demanding and which do like more? Sheena: I love both and both are
equally demanding. I love being on camera more because I feel more free, fun
and wild and my art can reach a larger audience whereas on stage I am limited
to sharing my passion with a small audience although it feels more intimate.
IM: How do prepare yourself before going on
stage or before a shoot? Sheena: I offer all
my work to god. I say, "facă-se voia ta nu meu" which means "Thy
will be done not mine". Then listen to music to get me in my zone which is
a flying magic carpet.Haha
IM: You have learned various dance forms, is
there one that is your favorite? Sheena: Ballet. My guru’s wife used
to be a prima ballerina. I am dreaming of the day that I get to see her divine
toes twirling my heart to heaven.
IM: We all know that dance is very important in
Bollywood films but do you feel that it also helps you become a better model
Sheena: Dance is certainly very important in Bollywood considering all the films
have songs which is totally different to what I grew up with in America
watching Hollywood films. But don’t limit yourself to only dance. There are so
many things to learn which are and will be useful to you as a model and actor.
I am constantly studying a new language (I want to learn sign language soon). I
am constantly reading books whenever I get chance (my favorites are autobiography
of a yogi and the holy science) and I love biographies (Madame du pompadour is
one of my absolute fascinations). I am a sport fanatic and adventurous thrill
freak so I am always up for a challenge whether it be climbing the mountains in
sub zero temperatures holding on for my dear life without any cables strapped
on with my toes barely balancing myself from falling into a big gorge or
swimming with gigantic nurse sharks. I love adventure. I hope I find a film
director who would be daring to shoot a film with me while taking a heart
throbbing laugh with me!
IM: Is there something about the Hindi film
Industry that annoys you and would like to change? Sheena: Art should allow us artists
to be free and there is enough audience to appreciate different kinds of art.
Support independent artists. Stop comparing and trying to mold every artist
into the same thing. Embrace everyone’s unique individual flavor that they
bring to the screen. Bollywood needs it certainly!
IM: How would you define your fashion sense? Sheena: My spirit wears the skin
with comfort and confidence. As far as clothing I wear what makes me feel girly
and like a lady (dresses, lace, and pink lipstick, something sparkly). I always
wear my heart and a big smile... ALWAYS!
IM: A pieces of accessory that you can't do
without? Sheena: I think clothes technically
speaking are all accessories too since we were not born wearing them. My most
important would be my cross necklace.
IM: If you could act in a remake of any film
what film and role would you picks? Sheena: Most definitely Dirty
Dancing and of course I would want to play the leading dancing lady! 50 shades
of grey!!!! Okay I shouldn’t say more. Haha IM: Your idea of the perfect vacation? Sheena: Sunbathing topless on a
white powder beach, bathing in the clear blue waters of a secluded private
island, falling asleep to the crashing waves and waking up again to the bright
sun shining in my face so I can spend another day free diving like a mermaid.