Q&A with Natasha Patel Levi’s commercial
Natasha Patel, an actress & dancer, recently featured in a Levi’s commercial, directed by Jake Nava. Here’s a Q&A all about the shoot.
Q. Where are you from, and what is your background?
A. I am originally from Manchester. I grew up in an Indian household. I started dancing young with ballet, tap, jazz and modern. My main performing side is dancing and acting. I’m musical-theatre trained so it’s imbedded in me.
Q. Was it a lengthy casting experience? Did you find this process fun?
A. Yes, there was a call-back. I ended up staying longer so my friend Rai didn’t have to dance on his own. And I remember saying it’s like doing ‘Insanity’, but looking sexy. Hard work- all an act!
Q. How was the actual experience of filming?
A. It was so hot! Like the hottest day of the year, but it was awesome. Jake (Nava, the director) was great. He directed me in exactly what I needed to do, and made me feel at ease. And I had some mates also working on it which was fun.
You always need that- mates around you- when you’re knackered and about to pass out. The camera was close up on my face, so I had to think about things before going on, and then decide what shall I do in the next take, and so on.
Q. What was the hair prep & wardrobe?
A. They spent ages making my hair shiny and straight. And they did gorgeous make up. Costume was lengthy as they wanted to get it right. And it kept changing of course, but overall it was fabulous.
Q. Was there a lot of choreography to learn?
A. There wasn’t any choreography to learn. It was all freestyle and we had to work it out on the actual shoot day. To be honest, it was in the audition that we had to pull out the best moves. And then make sure we knew how to Bhangra. And how to shine on the spot, while giving and creating impactful dance movement.
Q. Where did you shoot and what was best part of that?
A. The shoot was in Brixton in London. The best part was the dancing bit, of course. We wanted to keep doing more, and then watching the (video) playback. It’s amazing what a difference the lights, camera and location can make.
Q. Anything that surprised you?
A. No, nothing surprised me really, except for the fact that they were shooting our scene, and another scene on the same day.
Q. Where are you hoping & planning to go from here?
A. I want to go bigger and better! I think this is just a starting point, and I think more will come. I just have to be grateful and keep working hard. I love acting and dancing so getting to combine them is always great.
Q. Anything helpful that you can take into your next job?
A. Just keep going, keep learning and don’t stop.
Q. Any life lessons learned?
A. Everything happens for a reason. If you are positive, people see this and it always helps. No one wants to be around, or work with negative people. Lastly, be confident.
You can find out more about Natasha S Patel through Mark Summers Management: