Long weekend was special and this time, I attended Black Dog Easy Evening at Westin Hotel in Gurgaon. This event happened on Sunday night and was amazing evening with great range of drinks, performances and music with Melissa Totten. Let's check out this Photo Journey to know more about this event and feel the masti...
First photograph above shows Melissa Totten who was main attraction of the event.
Going to Black Dog Easy Evening has always been fun and this time again it was rocking evening in Gurgaon. I was also looking forward to meet Melissa Totten, the Madonna impersonator performing at Westin, Gurgaon on Sunday (19 August). Crowd at Westin was amazing and everyone was looking forward to wonderful performances by Melissa Totten & her team. Folks of Delhi/NCR never miss their Black Dog Easy Evenings and as expected we observed a wave of people waiting at the hotel and thoroughly involved. Inside the venue people were served with some of the best liquors you can get and they were getting into the grove. People were having good time with their drinks & some chit-chat with frns around. Evening started at 7:00pm and by 9.00 pm the show started.
Black Dog is organizing Easy Evenings in various Cities of India and Melissa Totten is here on India tour for these events. Plan is to travel to Goa, Gurgaon, Bhubaneswar, Kolkata, Vizag, Guwahati and Hyderabad for Black Dog Easy evenings...
By looking at the name of this event, I was expecting range of whiskies by Black Dog but they were taking care of various tastes. So wines, vodka etc were also available on bar. So everyone could enjoy their preferred drinks. Four Seasons wine was being served during the evening. Great range of snacks from Westin Hotel Kitchen doubled the joy of easy evening at Gurgaon...
Bars were open throughout the evening except when Madonna was performing. Bars were open at 7:00pm and lasted till folks moved out the venue after having great time at Black Dog Easy Evening and Sizzling performances by Melissa Totten.
The sponsors Black Dog gave away couple of their finest whiskies to the audience selected from a lucky draw. We shall be sharing more photographs from the event in another post on Photo Journey, which will include winner's photographs as well.
After 90 minutes performance, I got a quick chance to interact with Melissa on backstage. She shared some of the interesting facts about her passion and the way she thinks about Madonna. It happened in the early 80s. A singer named Madonna changed the way the world had seen pop music. As the 26-year-old sailed down a gondola in Venice crooning Like a Virgin, dressed in a parrot green lace shirt with a crucifix dangling around her neck, the world sang along, even as some organizations demanded a ban on the song contending that it promoted pre-marital sex. While the world judged Madonna for making a point with her music, 16-year-old Melissa Totten was busy buying 'Madonna-like clothes' from a neighbourhood market in Fairfax, Virginia . Melissa always loved buying whacky clothes, who felt that 'Madonna understood her'...
More Easy Evenings by Black Dog are planned in other Indian cities. Madonna fans can look forward to her all-time hits like 'Confessions on a dance floor', 'Bedtime stories', 'Like a prayer', 'Hard candy', 'Madonna', 'True blue', 'Something to remember' and 'American life'.
When Melissa Totten moved to Chicago, she decided to impersonate Madonna as part of a project in college. Gradually, she was approached for occasional look-alike work for celebrity-themed events and she decided to put on the trademark Madonna cone bra and give it a go. 'It felt like playing ‘dress up’ for beer money. I had no idea that there was a whole industry out there,' says Melissa Totten, whose impersonation began being called ‘Madonna sightings’ by newspapers and TV channels, even as the paparazzi chased her down the street. As all this happened, Madonna was busy filming A League of Her Own in Chicago.
Melissa Totten’s admiration for Madonna not only existed because Madonna addressed desires and fantasies and questioned the hegemonic theories of existence, but also because she came across as an intriguing songstress. 'She allowed everything acerbic to work in her favour,' says Totten, who has two cover albums to her credit.
During the event, I was not comfortable in shooting people although I could see people around me who wanted themselves to be photographed at Black Dog Easy Evening.
When show started, some music was played by the DJs from London and then Madonna came on stage, we mean Melissa Totten. She started with one of the famous number from 'Hard Candy' the 'Candy Shop' and the audiences sitting there were thrilled to see her on stage. She was full of energy, well supported by her troop of dancers. She performed nonstop for 20 minutes on the go and the crowd went crazy and one of the gentlemen was extremely desperate to dance with her. People started dancing and the lovely lady joined the crowd and danced with them. She stepped down many times and enjoyed with the crowd present there. Melissa went on performing for some more famous tracks of Madonna’s and she made presence felt. Like people say, all good things have to come to an end. The show ended with her saying thanks to the crowd and the crowd thanked her with huge applause. She was fabulous on stage and during her performances, many times dresses were changed as the mode of the songs she performed. Apart from brilliant songs, she was a great performer and quite wonderful as catching up dance steps with her team at random moments...
After some drinks at Black Dog Easy Evening, people were waiting for Madonna Performances. As part of Black Dog's easy evenings concert 'Madonna Forever', Melissa Totten created the right mood by involving the crowd. She came down from the stage with the dancers and prompted everyone to stand up and shake a leg with her. NCR people gave her great support and it was great environment all around. In fact her dancer's team many times came down and made people groove on Madonna Songs.
Madonna has many avid fans amongst Indians and we are sure that our connoisseurs who are fascinated by her genre of music will enjoy the ' Madonna Forever Tour', Avishek Das, senior general manager (Marketing), United Spirits Limited, said in a press statement.
During the evening, Melissa added desi flavour by mixing songs like 'Jai ho' and 'Mundyan to bachke rahin' with English songs and it had an electrifying impact. For that I would give more credits to DJs and Dancer's team of Melissa Totten. Dancers were amazing during Jai Ho and they tried to have some English Bhangra Steps during 'Mundyan to bachke rahin'.
Here is one of the part area at Westin Hotel, Gurgaon. There was a huge lounge with two big halls, one was dedicated for Melissa Performances and other one had some seating arrangements to enjoy drinks and snacks. This is one of the two halls at Westin Hotel, Gurgaon, INDIA.
The 90 minutes performance by Melissa Totten & her team required frequent costume change, but it was made sure that the stage was not left empty for even a minute and the disco-jockeys kept the heat bars high with good music. DJs from London were amazing and they were best when Desi songs were mixed with English beats.
Many PR, Media people were all around to cover this event at Westin Hotel. Overall this event went very well and everyone had great fun on the weekend.
Above photograph was shot in the lounge where some of the premier brands of Black Dog were being showcased. Since lighting on bottles was extremely bad, I thought of shooting some of the ornaments placed around the bottles. At times I think that all event management companies should have one art director who can think on behalf of Media, Photographers coming to the event :)
The show was closed with a soulful performance on Madonna's song 'Like a prayer'.