Teri Meri Doriyaann is one of the most popular shows currently on our screens. We got the chance to catch up with Sharhaan Singh who plays Jaspal Singh Brar on the show. Sharhaan chatted about his journey, Teri Meri Doriyaann, and what he aims to achieve in the coming years.
How did your love for acting begin and how did you pursue it?
When I was a child, I used to go to school and I was in love with films. I used to watch all Bollywood films with Dharmendra, Shatrughan SInha and the likes. I had so much information about films since then. I was directed towards films, and when I was in college, I started doing theatre and youth festivals. When I finished college, I wanted to concentrate on being an actor and didn’t know how to pursue it. I then joined a theatre group ‘Natak Wala’ in Patiala. The founder of Natak Wala, Rajesh Sharma suggested I take this as my profession and that I need to study. He suggested that I enrol at Punjab University as a theatre/drama student. He took me there and I got admission and my journey started as a theatre actor. So I gave two years to theatre at Punjab University. And after that I felt that I could act. Before that, I never used to do theatre much but now at university I was forced to read books, scripts and participate in theatre activities. It gave me good exposure to be an actor. That was my first journey, and in the second year of theatre, I started trying for TV shows on Doordarshan in Delhi. Directors and producers used to come to shoot in Punjab and around Himachal, and they would audition actors who would do theatre. Many times I got selected and got the opportunity to be an actor in TV shows so my journey started while doing theatre.
At the moment, Jaspal Singh Brar is the only positive child of Daarji. What is it like to play the cool and calm Brar son while Inder, Jasleen and Pravjyot have their own motives and grievances?
My journey was long, I did almost 60 serials. My famous shows were like Rakhi, Uttaran, Jhansi Ki Rani, Gustakh Dil, Lajwanti, Hum Hain Na, Kumkum Bhagya, Kasam Tere Pyaar Ki, Shivaji, Hanuman, Vignaharta Ganesh, Balika Vadhu 2. I think I shot for all channels, Sony, Zee, Big Magic, Star Bharat, Life OK, so I’ve been part of all TV channels. I wanted to play a Punjabi character again. My first movie was Yaraan Naal Baharaan, I started with that film in 2005 with Jimmy Shergill and I played a Sardar boy and I loved it. After that I did an English movie with Gulshan Grover in London and again I played a Sardar boy, so I think this was destiny that after a long time I got this chance to play Jaspal Singh Brar in Teri Meri Doriyann on Star Plus. You won’t believe, Star Plus was the only channel where I did 1 show – Tere Mere Sapne in 2010-11, and after that I never got a chance to work with Star. Then finally this came up and I got selected for Jaspal Singh Brar with a positive lead-the second son of the family after Avinash Wadhawan (Inder) and it’s been great. Playing so many negative roles in Kumkum Bhagya, Hanuman, Hum Hain Na, Uttaran, this was a drastic change for me, playing a calm and cool Brar son. This is a great role for me because after playing so many aggressive roles this was a positive one after long.
The Brar family is quite particular about following traditions and certain norms. Do you think this reflects what many families still practice?
Yes of course. Especially in Punjabi culture I’ve seen that. Being a Punjabi, born and brought up in Patiala and these are my roots. Playing a Punjabi I know a lot, like what kind of ceremonies and traditions happen in this community and this is what many people want to know as well, because many rituals are being banished from real life. Many people have less time now, they have become digital but in the Brar family they try to follow all the festivals and all the traditions and this is actually a good message to people who stopped doing all this.
Teri Meri Doriyaann is the Hindi adaptation of the Bengali show ‘Gaatchora’. The show is also adapted in other languages like Tamil and Telugu. What do you think makes this story so popular across regions?
I feel all stories are like this, it’s all about relationships. Language you can change but relationships you can’t change. Everywhere these kinds of relations happen, problems between the relationships, relatives, brother-sister, brother-in-law and sister-in-law, so Teri Meri Doriyaann is somewhat like that. Yes this is an idea from Gaatchora but not following it much because Gaatchora has a Bengali background and Teri Meri Doriyaann has a Punjabi background so traditions are different, activities are different and even fashion is different, so they are in different categories I would say. Gaatchora is very popular in other languages also and I am sure Teri Meri Doriyaann is also liked by people, especially people who are from Punjab, from North who know the Punjabi culture and the Sardar look so I’m sure people love it.
Veer has a budding love story with Sahiba’s sister Keerat. Do you think Jaspal and Gurleen will oppose this relationship, or support their son?
Obviously there are 3 love stories. They happen to get completed because Angad-Sahiba are already facing marriage issues and Garry got married already, so now Veer, my son, is playing a positive son of the family like me, so I don’t think there’ll be any problem. There are already 2 sisters in the Brar house so I don’t think there should be any problem because Keerat is a sensible girl and Veer is a sensible guy and we are the sensible couple in the Brar house, so I hope we will understand and allow them to get married soon.
Cockrow Entertainment and Shaika Films have produced many successful shows. What is the experience like working with them?
This is the first time I’m doing a Cockrow production show because I’ve been a part of Balaji, Contiloe, Film Farm and others so far. They are good people, they are making a show with a Punjabi background and being a Punjabi, I love when I get roles like this which attract my roots and get to speak in Punjabi style and Punjabi language. Obviously working with successful people is always a good experience and especially Teri Meri Doriyaann is a big show, with a big set and very fashionable clothing. It’s a good experience because I wanted to play a Sardar boy and finally I’m playing a Sardar father who is also a brother-in-law and a son. It’s also a great experience for my Punjabi work because I’ve been part of Punjabi cinema. I’ve been part of Punjabi films like I mentioned my first being in 2005, the second in 2006 with Jaspal Bhatti and the third with Harbhajan Mann’s brother and the whole team of Punjabi actors in 2007. Then I shot in 2014 for Mr and Mrs 420 and then I shot for Padmaavat in 2017 and after that I produced and directed and wrote the film Aapein Pein Siyappa for Zee5 and its great working for Punjabi cinema.
Viewers are appreciating the Punjabi flavour of the show and gives insight into a family of Punjab. How does this make you feel?
Even in big films we see a Punjabi background and Punjabi culture like Karan Johar films, Yash Raj Films, so Punjabi background and culture always attracts audiences and it’s the same for this show. When this show started, it was grand and people loved it and loved the characters. It’s going great and people from my region watch me playing a Sardar and it feels great. Till now they have seen me in negative roles, in different kinds of shows and this time I got a show with my mother tongue kind of Punjabi. It’s great playing a role like this and obviously people love you in this.
What would you advise young people who are opposed from following their passion like Sahiba? And what would you advise stern elders like Daarji?
I think Sahiba wants to do what she wishes to do, and there should not be any kind of blockage or anything stopping her from doing what she likes. She is an artist and Daarji is a man of word, he is the disciplined man of the family so he just asks everyone to follow the rules but sometimes you have to go beyond the rules. So I think Daarji should give her free space to do what she would love to do. I don’t think there should be any kind of stoppage preventing her from doing things. I feel Sahiba should do what she wants to do whether its study or art related, and Daarji should understand.
You have directed and produced a Punjabi film ‘Aape Pein Siyaape’, can we expect to see more films from you soon?
Of course! That’s my main motive, being part of Punjabi cinema. I aim to do bigger things for Punjabi cinema. I’ve given my 16-17 years to Mumbai, to Bollywood, the TV industry and I learned a lot and I can use these 16-17 years of experience to make good Punjabi content and good Punjabi films. I’m a writer, director and actor for Punjabi cinema, so I’ll be writing good scripts, direct them well and I can act a good role in these films, so looking forward to do more films.
Finally, a message for all your fans and viewers of Teri Meri Doriyaann worldwide?
Please keep watching, keep supporting so that we can continue giving you good episodes of Teri Meri Doriyaann every day. Shooting every day is hectic but we are trying our best to give a good impression of Teri Meri Doriyaann so people can watch and love us more. So we just need your blessings. Keep watching, keep showering your blessings.
Sharhaan also leaves a special message for young people…
A message to all youngsters, follow your dreams and don’t give up because you never know what is taking you where, and it can reach you to your success level. So all the best everyone!