Vishu Rita Krocha
Morung Express News
Encompassing all performing skills, Top Acts, an initiative of the Family Planning Association India (FPAI) Nagaland Branch, has been instrumental in shaping young talents of the state while serving as a hub for young people to come together and channelize their energy to positive vibes and learning, for the last two years. In these two seasons, more than 150 young people have performed for the first time, enabling many of them to pursue their God-given talents with more zest and vigor.
Sentisangla Oungth, who won the Season 2, Top Acts (along with her brother Hopong) having wowed the audience with her powerful voice is now a singing sensation and will be representing Nagaland at the “NE Body can sing” at Shillong in the last week of October. Crediting Top Acts for carving her road to success, the class-12 student of Minister’s Hill Baptist Higher Secondary School Kohima says, “Top Acts has boosted my level of confidence. I gained a lot of confidence performing here and I am now getting a lot of opportunities.”
“At the time my brother and I won, he was supposed to do his Class 10th admission but we were in a financial crisis. With the money we received as cash award, we were able to pay his admission fee,” she further adds.
A beatboxer- Atseibu Usou, who got the Best Performer Award says, “This platform has not only refined my skills but also boosted my confidence.” A student of Holy Family School, Atseibu first performed at Top Acts during October 2018 and is grateful that more opportunities are coming his way.
Vikas Thapa, a dancer, who has also had his association with Top Acts is among the Top 15 who performed at the Indian Hip Hop Championship in Goa this year. Next year, the dancer will be further performing at the Dance Plus at Mumbai.
In a conversation with The Morung Express, Branch Manager of FPAI, Nagaland, Vincent Belho highlights that, “we want to be able to give a free platform for the young people and also nurture these young adolescents to grow into responsible people.” In the Top Acts they perform, he says, “we also bring established artists to come and exhort these young people- our ultimate goal is for them to stage presentation, performances, gain more confidence, and be committed and dedicated to any form of art they choose.”
Another very important thing to FPAI, he asserts is that all young people go through that period of stress and in this time of no designated counseling centre, we use this platform to talk about stress and turmoil and things related to adolescence so they get equipped with knowledge. It’s not necessarily family planning but the general awareness in 5-10 minutes so the message transferred does not overshadow the show.”
“We are trying to promote this safe space- a family oriented space, so parents and guardians won’t think twice over sending them to Top Acts,” Belho puts across. He goes on to state happiness that Top Acts artists are also taking part in TaFMA initiated programmes, which, he adds, is a very good thing. “We are trying to identify talents but when our role is beyond that, the performing industry is getting a boost with the role TaFMA is playing now,” he says.
Top Acts, which is not a profit oriented programme does not take any entry fee but just have to send a demo for participation. Held at Muskan Youth Centre, near NSF Martyrs Park every 4th Saturday of the month at 4:30 pm, a number of 10 slots each is provided every month to young people below the age of 25 wherein they can perform in group of individually and all these contestants also receive a certificate of participation.
Mention may be made here that Kemesanuo Vivian Belho was the winner of the Top Acts Season 1 Grand Finale. The winner of the grand finale receives a cash award of Rs. 10,000 while the 2nd and 3rd runners-up get Rs. 5000 and Rs. 3000 respectively. Sponsors and partners of Top Acts include 4Life, Life Pro Sound Solution, India Trail, Music Garage, Beat Device, Vision Trinity and Lady Ruo Boutique.
It is noteworthy that Top Acts was conceptualized on International Youth Day on August 12, 2017 with the idea to provide a platform for young artistes to perform and realize their potential in the field of their choice of art, also enabling them to interact with experienced and accomplished artistes to help them grow and learn.