That cost the SRGMP producers about Rs 1,000 to stage. Cost to the girl: beating from Mum and a broken engagement.
This and more about the life of an extra who makes a living as a TV audience in this fascinating piece by Rama Lakshmi which the Drift Memsaab stumbled upon in the Chicago Tribune (first published in the Washington Post).
A few more fun highlights from the article, which also provides some terrific insights into the staging of reality TV:
- Audiences make about Rs 200 per show and pull in around Rs 6,000 monthly. Meals, snacks and tea are included
- Indian clothes are not allowed on the show. Girls have to wear jeans and shirts
- Sometimes instead of cheering, the producers ask the audience to sway silently with the music during several hours of "retakes"
- The most empowering moment for the audience on SRGMP? Punching the button to vote for the show's best singer. "I am deciding somebody's future"
- How come girls make more than boys here? asks sidekick
- SkD is majorly put off
- Joules is hardly surprised
- Trudging up fake enthusiasm is depressing says headmistress
- anu g analyses a potentially staged incident on Chote Ustaad
- girlie girl feels sorry for Head Kiss Girl
- There are two professions where women outearn men says Mind Rush
- Are the phoren audience members also paid? wonders HoonPanGujarati
- Probably so, says Joules, after they are hunted down from Cafes
- At least those school kids are having fun says Cinderella