If you are named Vineeth, chances are high that you would excel in the school arts festival. So, it would seem if you go through the annals of the prestigious fest. We pick three of them who have made it big in the school festival and beyond.
The Kala Prathibha and Kala Thilakam titles were instituted in the arts festival held at Thrissur in 1986. It seemed like the title for the top scorer among boys was reserved for Vineeth.
He had the audience awestruck by his dancing prowess. How could a boy dance so well, some wondered. He came first in Bharatanatyam with an A grade in the festival held in Kannur.
He went on to become a busy movie actor known for such hits as Idanilangal, Nakhakshathangal and Rithubhethangal. He still found time to compete at the school arts festival and take home more prizes. Dance remained his first love.
Vineeth Kumar (actor, director)
Vineeth Kumar could hardly lift the coveted shield when he was awarded the Kala Prathibha title at the State School Arts Festival. He was only 11 years old.
The sixth-standard student from the Mele Chovva school in Kannur created history at the festival. He was the youngest to be chosen as Kala Pratibha.
The boy grew up to become an actor and a director. Ask him about the arts festival. Was the boy tensed about performing on stage? Was he worried about remembering all steps of the difficult classic dance?
He says he was tensed, but for a different reason. He was intimidated by the steep steps that led to the main venue. He needed many hands to help climb the steps to the dais.
Vineeth Kumar had represented the Pazhayangadi Vengara Hindu Lower Primary School and the Mele Chovva School at the festival.
When Vineeth Kumar was chosen as Kala Pratibha, he was considered a boy wonder. He hogged news space. He missed the next two festivals but he continued to get laurels.
He acted in Hariharan's Oru Vadakkan Veeragatha and received an award for his performance.
By the time he returned to the festival in his ninth and tenth classes, he was already an established actor.
Vineeth Sreenivasan (actor, director)
At the school arts festival held at Palakkad at the turn of the millennium, there was a star rise. The 2000 festival saw the emergence of Vineeth Sreenivasan. He came first in Mappila Pattu. His distinct voice and energetic style of singing enthralled the audience. He was representing the Rani Jai Pulic School at Nirmalagiri.
As soon as the result was out, Vineeth called up his celebrity father, actor Sreenivasan. He was out of range. Those days only cities were covered by mobile networks. Sreenivasan was busy shooting somewhere for the movie Pilot.