Iulia Vantur: Didn’t plan to be a singer when I arrived here

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It has been a steady climb for Romanian actor-singer Iulia Vantur, who made her industry debut in Bollywood three years ago. After rendering assorted tracks in cinema, and several independent numbers, Vantur’s work will now feature in Salman Khan-starrer Radhe – Your Most Wanted Bhai, which releases on May 13. 

The singer, who lent her voice to the Disha Patani-starrer Seeti maar, and Zoom zoom, tells mid-day, “The biggest compliment was being told that no one could sing the song like I did. I felt like my efforts had borne fruit. I had worked hard on nabbing the pronunciation because I don’t speak the language. I try to work 
on that each time. Many people have also told me that my voice sounds different. I am happy to hear that.”

Vantur knows that learning the pronunciation was only one part of the task at hand. She had to do justice to the commercial desi number by rendering the track in the required style. “There is always a method to singing a desi track like Seeti maar. I have been around for some time and I love this style. I find it entertaining and hope to render similar songs in the future.”

For the bigger part of her journey, Vantur has been accused of paving her path in the industry with the support of the superstar. But, while she considers his backing a boon, she admits that she could benefit from being shown “some more respect”. “You want more respect for your work. But, being guided by a knowledgeable person like Salman, is a blessing. I shouldn’t be disturbed. I should be happy that I get to be advised by him.” 

Khan, on his part, encourages Vantur to work on enhancing her craft. “He says, everything will fall in place. I often wonder why I work on so many songs that do not even release, and lament about the limited results [my efforts bear]. I felt that I was not heading in the right direction, but, hard work always pays off.”

It was at long-time friend Sajid Khan’s behest that Vantur decided to render the track. Sajid, who has composed the songs of the film, had her record the track in a studio where she had turned up for another recording. “He said we should see how it sounds. Initially, I thought I was only practising. But, he then said people loved the voice.” 

She counts Sajid among the few composers who have kept their faith in her, despite criticism around her work. “I never planned to make a career in singing. It happened, and I am more confident now than ever before. 

However, the competition in Bollywood is a tough one because people are so good at their job. No one can do your work for you. People can encourage you, and open the doors of their studios for you, but how you eventually sing is all on you.” 

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