Young talent nurtured by Nikhil Thampi, Nikhil Chibb and Midival Pundits at The Step Up by Johnnie Walker

On April 7th, Mumbaigloss witnessed a never before seen talent show at BlueFrog, Lower Parel, in Mumbai. BlueFrog stage saw the final leg of India’s first digital mentorship program, The Step Up by Johnnie Walker. After a thrilling journey of four weeks, the platform culminated into a stunning Johnnie Walker-inspired evening where nine talented participants showcased their talent in the presence of their mentors Nikhil Thampi, Nikhil Chibb and Midival Pundits duo Gaurav Raina and Tapan Raj.

Only nine aspirants from across India made it through the elimination rounds and were guided to sharpen their skills and undertake an inspirational journey packed with rigorous training and tough challenges, by mentors Nikhil Chib, Nikhil Thampi and the MIDIval Punditz. From pop-up restaurants to celebrity styling to creation of original tracks with limited instruments, this unique platform brought alive the dreams of nine talented individuals to do their best. Anusha Dandekar hosted the show gracefully and looked lovely in her red gown and Jadau neckpiece.

Anusha Dandekar, Midival Punditz, The Step Up, Johnnie Walker

MIDIval Punditz with Anusha Dandekar

The event culminated with the announcement of three winners who took The Step Up and will now go on to realize their dreams in their chosen fields. The winners are Srikar Shetty (food), Viraj Mohan (Music) and Rishika Jain (fashion). They will now enjoy a six month apprenticeship with Nikhil Thampi and Nikhil Chib, respectively. The best performer in music will set off on an exclusive four-city tour with Midival Punditz. Now how many 20 somethings get such an opportunity? I am really happy for the trio.

Srikar Shetty(food), Viraj Mohan (Music) and Rishika Jain (fashion)

The winners of The Step Up by Johnnie Walker

Speaking about the splendid grand finale, Mr. Bhavesh Somaya, Head of Luxury, United Spirits Limited – a Diageo Group Company said “The Step Up is a reflection of the Johnnie Walker philosophy that encourages individuals to take the next big step and move forward in life. This mentorship program has helped us create a strong platform for aspiring young adults in the fields of food, fashion and music to further enhance their skills and prepare them to STEP UP in the pursuit of their passions. Our aim is to nurture and promote these abled mentees and direct them on the path of progress and excellence.”

The series were written and directed by famous theatre and TV actor Divya Palat for her production house Balancing Act Productions. I used to love her in Captain Vyom as Dr. Zen. For those who are not aware, Captain Vyom was India’s first sci-fi series in the 90’s.

I saw Vivan Bhatena with wife Nikhila Bhatena (who is Divya’s sister) and several other celebs like Kunal Vijaykar, Sumona Chakravarti (Comedy Nights with Kapil fame), Miss Malini and her husband Naushad enjoying the show.

This was a good platform for young and talented people. If you guys are interested, you should apply next time for this online talent hunt. You never know you might be the next winner of #TheStepUp. What do you all think? Do leave a comment below.

About MumbaiGloss

Parimita Chakravorty is an author, blogger, features writer and a communications specialist. She has written for various popular magazines and websites related to beauty, fashion, jewellery and lifestyle, including HAIR India,,, Hello, etc. She has also contributed to various youth blogs and magazines. Her book ‘Look Stunning At Any Size’ has been well appreciated and received by the readers. Currently, she is part of India’s leading IT brand and takes care of their internal communications. Parimita is also working towards bringing awareness about Endometriosis in India; a silent epidemic which is consuming a lot of lives. She manages a page ‘Endometriosis India Files’ where patients discuss their condition and diagnosis.
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